READ Psalm 79:9–13. 9 Help us, God our Savior, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins for your name’s sake. 10 Why should the nations say, “Where is their God?” Before our eyes, make known among the nations that you avenge the outpoured blood of your servants. 11 May the groans of the prisoners come before you; with your strong arm preserve those condemned to die. 12 Pay back into the laps of our neighbors seven times the contempt they have hurled at you, Lord. 13 Then we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will praise you forever; from generation to generation we will proclaim your praise. BLOOD CRIES OUT. The psalmist hears the victims’ blood crying out to be avenged (verse 10). The Bible often speaks of injustice “crying out” to God, as did the shed blood of Abel against Cain (Genesis 4:10–11). The psalmist calls for God to pay back the invaders (verse 12). What he did not know was that Christ’s blood would someday be poured out in Jerusalem too, blood that “speaks a better word than the blood of Abel” (Hebrews 12:24). It demands forgiveness rather than retribution for those who believe. Christians too can praise God in the face of mistreatment (verse 13). But in addition they love their enemies and pray for their salvation (Matthew 5:43–48). Prayer: Lord, how can I, who live only by your mercy and grace, withhold the same from anyone else? Thank you for lifting from me the impossible burden of thinking that I know what others deserve who have wronged me. Help me to leave that to you. Amen.