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Our Heavenly Father, Protector of The Lowly

Psalm 68:5 (ESV) … “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.”

Orphans and widows in the Old Testament are traditionally representative of those who are defenseless, who have no one to take care of them and protect them. For Israelite society, only (adult) males had legal rights, which meant that orphans, widows, and resident aliens had no one in particular to defend their interests.

The word protector translates a Hebrew word which means “judge”. A just and compassionate judge would see to it that a widow’s rights were respected by all.

His sacred Temple” translates his holy habitation, which may be a reference to heaven.[1]

The compassion of God is praised here in this verse. Both the intervening of His compassion and the integrity of His compassion are noted. God looks out for the genuinely needy. Orphans have no means of support, but God takes care of them. Furthermore, He is a respecter of the widows. What assurance we have to know that even when we are needy and defenseless that the Lord our God stands ready to intervene. Truly, “His eye is on the sparrow and I know who watches me!”

[1] Bratcher, R. G., & Reyburn, W. D. (1991). A translator’s handbook on the book of Psalms (p. 579). New York: United Bible Societies.

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