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Psalm 29 (NRSV) describes a storm rolling over the Jordan valley.

The congregation I serve is riding out a hurricane at this time; for safety's sake we didn't gather for worship.

Can we, the church, offer this Psalm as solace to a family with a ruined house or an injured member (heaven forbid)? Or would they understand it as God's wrath falling on them?

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closed as off-topic by Flimzy, Nathaniel, Mr. Bultitude, Lee Woofenden, curiousdannii Apr 15 at 0:33

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions seeking pastoral advice are off-topic here; your spiritual problems are too important to be left in the hands of random Internet people. See: Pastoral Advice Questions" – Flimzy, Lee Woofenden
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Your link pulls up Genesis 18. 20 – 32. I'd edit it, but I'm not familiar with the way the Oremus site works. – Mason Wheeler Aug 28 '11 at 13:53
Oops, sorry @Mason. Fixed. – user116 Aug 28 '11 at 14:30

Well, the Psalm doesn't look like it says anything about wrath. But if anyone starts wondering about that, point them to Matthew 5: 45, where Jesus points out that God "sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust," and also to John 9: 1-3, where Jesus explains that even when a disaster strikes a specific person, it's not necessarily an expression of God's wrath or punishment, but an opportunity for good works.

The John passage could actually lead into a sermon, if you were giving one today, about Christian living. Once the storm is over, there will be a lot of opportunities for the members of your congregation to live the principles of the Gospel by helping their neighbors with cleanup, rebuilding, and possibly medical work.

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+1 I shared Matthew 5:45 with people at church today after reading your answer earlier. – user23 Aug 29 '11 at 2:01

I hate to be harsh, it is harder to accept that from me, a person separated from your situation. But all devastation is from God, as this is what God tells us.

Worry not about the things of this world, but worry about the souls of men. Pray not that your friends and family get better and are restored, but pray that they may repent of their sin and turn to God. God knows the heart of man and is just in his judgement, it is best that we accept Gods discipline that it may produce good fruit from us later.

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Can you reference where God tells us all devastation is from him? – a_hardin Aug 28 '11 at 19:24
While all devastation may be from God in a sovereign preeminent manner of speaking, I would find myself hard pressed to demonstrate, on balance of scripture, that it is all direct application of God's wrath to each particular individual. – user32 Aug 28 '11 at 21:34
Jonah 3:10, isaiah 30:28, dueteronomy 8:20, psalm 9:17, – Ecommerce Consultant Aug 28 '11 at 22:28