Summary: Psalm 50 (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


(1). The Holy Judge (vs 1-6)

(2). The Heartless Worshippers (vs 7-15).

(3). The Hypocritical Worshippers (vs 16-22)

(4). The Honest Worshippers (vs 23)



• Chambers

• Criminal Justice

• Crown Court

• Garrows Law

• Judge John Deed

• Jury

• Kavanagh QC

• Law and Order

• New Street Law

• Rumpole of the Bailey

• Silk

• These shows are just a few of the British TV programmes based around a courtroom.

• Courtroom scenes on television or in film often make for good drama;

• Especially when the case takes a surprising turn, or when justice itself in on the line.


• In Psalm 50 we have a dramatic courtroom scene.

• God himself is the judge.

• He summons the whole world to the foot of Mount Zion (Jerusalem);

• To appear before his tribunal.

(1). The Holy Judge (vs 1-6)

“The Mighty One, God, the LORD,

speaks and summons the earth

from the rising of the sun to where it sets.

2 From Zion, perfect in beauty,

God shines forth.

3 Our God comes

and will not be silent;

a fire devours before him,

and around him a tempest rages.

4 He summons the heavens above,

and the earth, that he may judge his people:

5 ‘Gather to me this consecrated people,

who made a covenant with me by sacrifice.’

6 And the heavens proclaim his righteousness,

for he is a God of justice”.


• In the UK when a judge enters a courtroom,

• Everybody stands respectfully;

• But verse 2 tells us;

• That God’s entrance into his assembly is accompanied by the shinning of his glory.

• Notice in verse 3:

• God's courtroom is not like the mahogany panelled room we so often see on TV.

• His courtroom is surrounded by fire.

• And around him is a great storm, a tempest!

• ill: This description is very similar to the passage in Exodus chapter 19;

• When Moses went up Mt. Sinai (Mt. Horeb) to get God's law.

• There was thunder & lightening, fire and smoke;

• Coming before God was a was terrifying experience!


• Every good courtroom drama has a twist and so does this one;

• Because although in verse 1 the whole world is summoned.

• When the charges are read,

• Those assembled in the court soon realize;

• That the defendant is not WHO or WHAT they expected.

• Those gathered are about to discover that it is the people of God who are on trial.

• And not the rest of the world.

• They are about to learn that judgment begins in the house of the Lord!


• The purpose of this ‘trial’ was not to convict and condemn his people;

• Rather it is to open the eyes of the people, to help them see their faults and failings;

• So that they will repent and return to the Lord.

• There is a difference between Divine judgment and Divine wrath.

• Divine wrath destroys.

• Divine judgment brings us to repentance.

• Therefore though we may not like it, it is good to remember that;

• Divine judgment is not a bad thing. It is a good thing,

• It is a blessing, a working of the grace of God in our life.

Now before we move to the next section of this Psalm, let’s ask a question:

Question: What can we learn about the judge?

Answer: Two things.

• (a). We learn about the name of this judge:

• Human judges in the UK are often called “the honourable so & so”

• But this judge is different, just look at the descriptive titles used.

• Verse 1 calls him; “The Mighty One, God, the Lord”.

• Three different Hebrew words ‘El’, ‘Elohim’, & ‘Jehovah’.

• He is the strong, all-powerful God – when he commands people will obey!

• He is the only true God – we therefore only ever answer and are accountable to him

• He is the self-existing God – he depends on no-one but we all depend on him!

• (b). We learn about the character of this judge:

• Verse 6 refers to him as being righteousness.

• Verse 6 refers to him as being just.

• Being the Mighty God he knows all about those who are on trial;

• So no lever defence lawyer will ever get a guilty person off scot-free!

• Notice There will be no miscarriage of justice in this court!

• Because this judge can even call on all heaven and earth to witness the proceedings.

• In this court everything will be done correct and fair!


• Remind you again that the purpose of this ‘trial’;

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