Desmond Tutu and Psalm 85


Episcopalian vicar Fleming Rutledge kept newspaper clippings dating back to the apartheid era in South Africa.  Years later, while pondering the testy tone of Psalm 85, she reflected on the yellowed words of Desmond Tutu, then Anglican bishop of Johannesburg, South Africa.

Once again Tutu’s passport had been confiscated by government officials.  And once again his response was stunning.  Losing his passport, Tutu said, was not the worst thing that can happen to a Christian.  Even, he said further, being killed is not the worst thing that can happen to a Christian.  “For me,” he said, “one of the worse things would be if I woke up one day and said to the people, ‘I think apartheid is not so bad.’  For me this would be worse than death.”
Rutledge writes that the good African Bishop has shown the world “that the only way forward is through.”  Psalms, especially psalms that name our enemies, the dragons of life, help us through.  (Based on an article in The Christian Century Nov 17-24 199 pg 117))

For more posts like this, visit www.psalmstory.com a website/blog for Pastor Kevin Adams’ new book “150: finding your story in the Psalms.”

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