By Edgar Twedt
Psalm 62:1‐2, 5‐7
1. For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation.
2. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall never be shaken.
5. For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him.
6. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
7. On God rests my deliverance and my honor; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.
These beautiful verses are packed with hints of Advent, a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. One way to look at them is to see verses 1, 2, and 5, 6 as book ends within which we can begin to imagine and image Advent. And then one can see verse seven as the foundation stone on which the two bookends rest, and between these bookends rests the focus of the season of Advent. In the Hebrew text these two pairs of verses are virtually identical, with just a tiny bit of variation. One sees these slight variations in the second line of each verse when one compares verse one with verse five and verse two with verse six. It’s as if the author, in using rather typical Hebrew poetry, wants to do just a little more than repeat for emphasis. The author wants to add words (ideas) for even greater emphasis. Thus we learn a variety of things about the God whom we look for in this season of Advent. First of all we learn that in this Advent time of waiting, our soul is to wait for God alone and to wait for God in silence. Then we learn that from God comes our salvation (1) and hope (3). And we learn that God is our rock (2, 6), our salvation (2, 6) and our fortress (2, 6). Finally we learn that from all of this we shall NOT (6) be shaken. And, as if this isn’t enough, we learn that we shall NEVER (2) be shaken. Verse seven tops it all off by reminding us again that the foundation which underlies Advent, as well as all other seasons of the church, is the promise that God is our deliverance, our honor, our mighty rock and our refuge. Could we surround Advent with any more powerful or reassuring verses of Scripture? I think not, for the promise is finally the promise of God’s Self.