Each week in service we read a passage of Scripture together as a congregation during our worship. It is often a wonderful moment, reminding us of some goodness of God or of living as his people. This week was especially exciting, so I thought I would share.
As one of our songs ended, we had prepared a space for the reading and the first slide came up:
Hide me from the conspiracy of the wicked,
from that noisy crowd of evildoers.
They sharpen their tongues like swords
and aim their words like deadly arrows.
They shoot from ambush at the innocent man;
they shoot at him suddenly, without fear.
The Scripture reference read, “Psalm 63:2-4.” The text, however, came from Psalm 64.
I had two thoughts simultaneously: This has to be the wrong passage, and, I hope there isn’t any more to this. By then the slide changed to reveal the rest of the passage.
They encourage each other in evil plans,
they talk about hiding their snares;
they say, "Who will see them?"
They plot injustice and say,
"We have devised a perfect plan!"
Surely the mind and heart of man are cunning.
But God will shoot them with arrows;
suddenly they will be struck down.
He will turn their own tongues against them
and bring them to ruin;
all who see them will shake their heads in scorn.
Long one, isn't it? Try reading it outloud...in front of the congregation...slowly.
One of our worship leaders dutifully read through the end of the passage. The others stopped talking to keep themselves from laughing openly. The next song was a slower, thoughtful song, and it was at least a verse before one of the singers was able to join in.
And who, might you wonder, was at the root of our “Smiting Scripture Gaffe”? The youth pastor. Surprised?