Moses, a man, chosen and inspired by God, was humble and faithful, honoured to be called a friend of God. The purpose of his mission was to lead God’s people, whose pilgrim began when God called Abraham (Gen 12). The pilgrims experienced God as their dwelling place, refuge, shelter and protection from generation to generation (Psalm 90). Indeed, God is the source of all life and each day is God’s gift, for God gives us the ability to breathe, live, think and act.
Psalm 90 is a hymn of praise (1-2), a lament on the brevity of life (3-12) and a prayer for the restoration of God’s favour (13-17). The background of this hymn is the pain and grief Moses experienced at the death of his sister Mariam and his brother Aaron and God’s rebuke to Moses as he struck the rock (Numbers 20). As a result, God stopped his entry into the promised land. So today, much pain, grief, and groaning send shivers of helplessness in the face of deaths induced by the coronavirus; even the wisest and the most robust have returned to dust. Yet, we don’t despair. Instead, like Moses, we too pray (12-17).
Moses knew the wayward nature of humanity and the righteous judgment of God, and in the light of life’s brevity, he asked God for wisdom to understand life (v.12). Indeed, we need to be at peace with God through Christ Jesus, so when we stand before God’s judgement seat, we find God’s favour to live and reign with God eternally!
Moses pleaded for God’s compassion (v.13) so that God’s people are satisfied in God’s unfailing love, and the days of gladness and rejoicing will be many (v.14,15). Thus, the experience of God’s love secures our life-long gladness, as people know the beauty of God (v.16). With God’s blessing in our lives, our work and its effectiveness will last and bless others (v.17). So Moses prays for a new beginning, possible by God’s grace and obedience of people, so should we!