Psalm 84 and 85 … Consider His Beloved and Glorious Presence

How lovely are Your dwelling places,
O Lord of hosts!
(84:1).

Surely His salvation is near to those who fear Him,
That glory may dwell in our land,
(85:9).

From Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance:
Lovely: 3039. יָדִיד yāḏiyḏ, יְדִידוֹת yeḏiyḏôṯ: An adjective meaning beloved, well-loved.
Glory: 3519. כָּבוֹד kāḇôḏ, כָּבֹד kāḇōḏ: A masculine singular noun meaning honor, glory, majesty, wealth.


From NIV Study Bible:
Psalm 84: a prayer of longing for the house of the Lord… the author (presumably a Levite who normally functioned in the temple service), now barred from access to God’s house… gives voice to his longing for the sweet nearness to God in His temple that he had known in the past.
Psalm 85: a communal prayer for the renewal of God’s mercies to His people at a time when they are once more suffering distress… Israel begins her prayer by appealing to the Lord’s past mercies… God’s saving power… His glory revealed.


Both Psalm 84 and 85 are written from that place of remembering the past in their current separation; separated from God’s temple, the place of His dwelling, and separated from God’s mercies, the place of His favor. And both psalms write of a desperate longing to once again be in that place of His Beloved and Glorious Presence.

Consider His Beloved and Glorious Presence

His Presence is portrayed in His Dwelling Places and His Favor… could there be anything more Beloved or Glorious?

  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His incomparable perfection
    • For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand outside.
      I would rather stand at the threshold of the house of my God
      Than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
      (84:10).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His good gifts
    • For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
      The Lord gives grace and glory;
      No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly,
      (84:11).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His favor and release from captivity
    • O Lord, You showed favor to Your land;
      You restored the captivity of Jacob,
      (85:1).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His forgiveness and mercy
    • You forgave the iniquity of Your people;
      You covered all their sin. Selah.
      You withdrew all Your fury;
      You turned away from Your burning anger.
      (85:2-3).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His salvation and compassion
    • Restore us, O God of our salvation,
      And cause Your indignation toward us to cease.
      (85:4).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His gracious touch
    • Lovingkindness and truth have met together;
      Righteousness and peace have kissed each other,
      (85:10).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His all-encompassing faithfulness
    • Truth springs from the earth,
      And righteousness looks down from heaven,
      (85:11).
  • His Beloved and Glorious Presence, the place of His righteous provision and way
    • Indeed, the Lord will give what is good,
      And our land will yield its produce.
      13 Righteousness will go before Him
      And will make His footsteps into a way,
      (85:12-13).

How do we respond to His Beloved and Glorious Presence?

An overwhelming gratitude seems like a compelling place to begin our response. We could meditate through the previous Scriptures for an entire year and we would neither exhaust the majesty and wealth contained within, or the thanksgiving they would evoke in us.

I have always been especially smitten with Psalm 85:10:

Lovingkindness and truth have met together;
Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

This verse depicts His Beloved and Glorious Presence being extended to His children by His amazing and unmerited grace and compassion. And it’s also a picture of a love story, a match made in heaven, so to speak. For without His Truth, we would never have met His Lovingkindness; and without His Righteousness, we would never be intimately acquainted with His Peace. And in that blessed union of His Lovingkindness and Truth, His Righteousness and Peace, we are granted a most comprehensive portrayal of His Beloved and Glorious Presence; it is intimacy with Almighty God! And that should knock us off our feet, take our breath away, cause us to be undone, and as Joy Dawson wrote, be “forever ruined for the ordinary.” (A great read: Forever Ruined for the Ordinary: The Adventure of Hearing and Obeying God’s Voice by Joy Dawson)

  • Oh, may we daily long and yearn for His Beloved and Glorious Presence, that we would know His joy.
    • My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the Lord;
      My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God,
      (84:2).
  • Let us daily seek to come to His Beloved and Glorious Presence, that we would ever praise Him.
    • How blessed are those who dwell in Your house!
      They are ever praising You. Selah.
      (84:4).
  • Let us trust Him with all that we are, that we would experience, by faith, the blessings of His Beloved and Glorious Presence.
    • O Lord of hosts,
      How blessed is the man who trusts in You!
      (84:12).
  • Let us set our hearts to listen and hear from Him, that we would never turn to folly, but always stay intimately attached to His Beloved and Glorious Presence.
    • I will hear what God the Lord will say;
      For He will speak peace to His people, to His godly ones;
      But let them not turn back to folly,
      (85:8).
  • Oh, may we be forever ruined for the ordinary; that we would live to reverence Him through obedience and dwell near to Him, each and every day, in His Beloved and Glorious Presence.
    • Surely His salvation is near to those who fear Him,
      That glory may dwell in our land,
      (85:9).

Oh, may we never settle for the ordinary. Lord, please grow our love for You, that we may have the heart of the psalmist, that we would choose to stand at the threshold in obedience, rather than ever miss out on even one day in Your Beloved and Glorious Presence.

For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand outside.
I would rather stand at the threshold of the house of my God
Than dwell in the tents of wickedness,
(84:10).

Let’s Grow Together!

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