Type of Psalm: Praise
Emotions: Abandonment by God
A psalm of David.
Give to the LORD, you sons of God, give to the LORD glory and might;
Give to the LORD the glory due his name.
Bow down before the LORD’s holy splendor!
The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD, over the mighty waters.
The voice of the LORD is power;
the voice of the LORD is splendor.
The voice of the LORD cracks the cedars;
the LORD splinters the cedars of Lebanon,
Makes Lebanon leap like a calf, and Sirion like a young bull.
The voice of the LORD strikes with fiery flame;
the voice of the LORD shakes the desert;
the LORD shakes the desert of Kadesh.
The voice of the LORD makes the deer dance and strips the forests bare. All in his Temple say, “Glory!”
The LORD sits enthroned above the flood!The LORD reigns as king forever!
May the LORD give might to his people;
may the LORD bless his people with peace!
-This psalm is used as part of Jewish ceremonies in the celebration of Pentecost
-Magnifies the sovereignty of God and the power of God in his creation
-Looks at God’s power through a storm over the Mediterranean
-Remembers God’s power in the flood
- Splendor of Holiness
- His voice is over the waters
- His glory thunders
- His voice is powerful
- His voice is full of majesty
- His voice breaks the cedars
- His voice flashes forth the flames of fire
- His voice shakes the wilderness
- He sits enthroned over the flood
- He sits enthroned as the King forever
- He gives strength to his people
- He blesses his people with peace
Yesterday I started to come to the realization that I was finding ways to seek God in the middle of the storm. I was seeing the need to praise God even when the days were tough. I was beginning to seek him and wanting to do even more. Today in Psalm 29 we see that in the midst of the storm the heavenly angels proclaim glory!
As the First Five App states, “As Psalm 29 glorifies the God who rules over creation, we are reminded that when things look bad in the moment, we can trust the view from above is entirely different. Even the angels have a front-row seat in the heavenlies, and they cry, “Glory!”
We find the power of God in his word. David shows God’s power as he describes God’s voice through a storm that comes over the Mediterranean. David saw God’s power and so can we. As the First Five explains, “The Word of God is just as powerful today as it was when David described His voice in Psalm 29. When we submit to God’s Word — to His commands throughout Scripture — we invite God’s power to transform us from the inside out. Because His voice changes everything.”
Warren Wiersbe reminds us, “When we see clouds gathering and know that a storm is about to come into our life, do you think about the glory of God? David did. So often we don’t. We think of escape rather than the glory of God. God often speaks to you in the storm. The next time you find yourself in a storm, listen to his voice. Look for His glory and power and be reminded that He is in control.”
God’s voice is powerful and it is greater than the storms that come through our days. May we remember to follow his voice instead of focusing on the noise of the storm!
As we affirm and acknowledge what you can do may we bring glory to your name. Your voice is over the waters and it is more powerful than the storms. Thank you for the reminder today that things here on earth look different from your view in Heaven. As our storms rage, the Angels praise your glory. Help us to do the same. I don’t always seek your voice in the middle of the storm. Many times I want to run from trouble. Help me to be like David and seek your glory in the middle of the storms of life. Help us to listen to your voice and to always remember that you are in control. In your Great name, Amen!
Type of Psalm: Thanksgiving
Emotions: Mourning turned into Joy
A psalm. A song for the dedication of the Temple. Of David.
I praise you, LORD, for you raised me up
and did not let my enemies rejoice over me.
O LORD, my God, I cried out to you for help and you healed me.
LORD, you brought my soul up from Sheol; you let me live, from going down to the pit.
Sing praise to the LORD, you faithful; give thanks to his holy memory.
For his anger lasts but a moment; his favor a lifetime. At dusk weeping comes for the night; but at dawn there is rejoicing.
Complacent, I once said, “I shall never be shaken.”
LORD, you showed me favor, established for me mountains of virtue. But when you hid your face I was struck with terror.
To you, LORD, I cried out; with the Lord I pleaded for mercy:
“What gain is there from my lifeblood,
from my going down to the grave? Does dust give you thanks or declare your faithfulness?
Hear, O LORD, have mercy on me; LORD, be my helper.”
You changed my mourning into dancing;
you took off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness.
So that my glory may praise you and not be silent. O LORD, my God, forever will I give you thanks.
-David exalted the Lord because God brought him up and did not let his enemies rejoice over him.
-David tells others to give thanks to the Lord because his anger is only for a moment but his favor is for a lifetime
-David learned that his own self-assurance is not enough when things go well. He had to submit all things to the Lord. He had to stop saying “I shall” or “I shall not” and say “You have…”
-God heals David from sickness
-Comes from 1 Chronicles 21:1-22 and 2 Samuel 24
- He draws his people up
- He does not let our foes rejoice over us
- He heals
- He restores
- His name is Holy
- His anger is but for a moment
- His favor is for a lifetime
- He is our helper
- He turns our mourning into dancing
- He loosens our sackcloth and clothes us with gladness
Over the past couple of years, I have been moved in ways that I did not understand. I did not want to live in the constant chaos of emotions that guided my actions. I wanted to find out a way to not be moved by my circumstances. I thought I was doing well until the day that it became clear that I was not. Fearing the start of the school year moved me more than I expected. Thinking that if I did certain things I would not be moved eventually left me lost when I was indeed shaken. In my fear, I started to look to distractions and things I could control. I then began to accept that maybe it is okay to just not be okay. This worked for awhile but then I was back into the chaos again, not knowing how to get out. Looking back I can see how I was moving away from the will of God, but it was not until I read Psalms 30 that I really looked at what had happened. We must remember to stay focused on God’s will, his word, and his way or we will indeed be moved, left unstable, and left wondering what has happened. God’s favor can leave us but it is most often in those times that we leave him first. David’s Psalms continues to show us how to remain and what to look for if we are being moved and better yet how to find the face of God when we loose our way.
Psalm 30 describes a time when David has disobeyed God and has seen how God does indeed hide his face from his people. It is assumed that this psalm is from the time of 1 Chronicles 21:1-22 and 2 Samual 24. As Warren Wiersbe explains, “This recounts the national plague David caused when he numbered the people and 70,000 people died. David also purchased a plot of ground from Ornan and dedicated it to be the site for the temple and he began to use the plot as his own personal place of worship.The message of the psalm is clear: “the Lord forgave David and gave him the blessing of a new beginning.”
In order for these blessings to be noted by David he went through a process of realizing that he was wrong in his thinking. David had to realize that it was not his works that was keeping him grounded but the works of the Lord. The First Five App describes how David realizes his pride that was getting in the way of God’s blessings as they explain, “Psalm 30 begins and ends with words of thanksgiving, but right in the middle of this psalm, David confesses a certain heart-attitude. He says: “As for me, I said in my prosperity, ‘I shall never be moved.’ By your favor, O LORD, you made my mountain stand strong; you hid your face; I was dismayed.” (Psalm 30:6-7) This is a telling admission. Beneath an earlier facade of confidence, David says a heart of pride lurked beneath his prosperity. In other words, when things went well and David prospered, he knew it was because of God’s favor, and he assumed it would last forever. It never occurred to him the Lord might remove His favor. But sometimes God allows our world to crumble so we won’t misplace our confidence either in ourselves or in any earthly system — like wealth or status or relationships — because none of these things can ultimately sustain us. God wants our total dependence on Him and nothing else. He wants us to know that without Him, nothing is possible. This leaves us with the question: In whom do we place our confidence? If we place our confidence in any thing or any person other than the Lord Jesus Christ, we will be like David and experience deep dismay. Psalm 30, then, is a gentle reminder for us to put our hope in God alone, because with Him all things are possible.”
It is pointed out by Warren Wiersbe that the words “You have” is repeated 5 times in Psalms 30. This is important as we see how David goes from focusing on his prosperity to what God has done. Once David sees that he can not stand on his own ways he then must focus on the Lord.
Warren Wiersbe speaks of prosperity as he explains that, “Prosperity means careless ease, a carefree self-assurance because things are going well. When we have prosperity without humility we have adversity. Why? Because we start to be more concerned with things than we are with God. David said in his prosperity, “I shall not be moved.” But then he found out that he could be moved. He found out his prosperity did not guarantee security. So instead of saying, “I shall” or “I shall not,” he began saying “You have.” He submitted his will to God’s will.”
David realized that his pride led him to a deep pit that only God could save him from. David went from focusing on his own ways to looking to what God does. David disobeyed God but as he humbled himself before God he was forgiven and many blessings were given to him by God. Many times our feet can become unplanted. Just when we feel that we have it figured out, God shows us that he can and will shake things up so we remember once again who is in control. When we feel that we are loosing our footing may it be our reminder to turn our face towards this truth and may it be our guide back to his will instead of our own.
Sometimes your words are hard to swallow, but the truth is so important. Just as you hid your face from David, we must know that you can do the same with us. But we must also remember that just like you forgave David, you also forgive us. Your son is our mediation and we must remember that it is never about the strength we have or the things we do, but the things that you have already done for us and what you continue to do. You draw us up when we are lowly. You save us from our enemies, and you are the ultimate healer. Your ways are higher than our ways. Though we may not always understand your ways, you heal in perfect and heavenly ways. We are to give thanks to your holy name. Even if weeping is noted for the night, you provide new joy every morning. Thank you for your word that shows us that there may be weeping but because of you…it does not last forever. There have been times that in my own pride and lack of humility that I have gone astray. In my own ways and under my own terms I tried to deal with my own weeping. Please forgive me Lord. Help me to seek your face with humility and to know that you are the one in control of all things. Help me to remember that your way will always be better than my own. Help me to stand strong in your ways and may I know to seek you when I start to be moved. Turn our mourning into dancing and our weeping into joy. Clothe us with gladness. May we continue to seek your ways and have prosperity that relies on you Lord and not on our own assurances. We pray all these things in your name, Amen!
Type of Psalm: Exile, Lament, Thanksgiving
Emotions: Fear turned into Security
For the leader. A psalm of David.
In you, LORD, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your righteousness deliver me;
incline your ear to me; make haste to rescue me! Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to save me.
For you are my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake lead me and guide me.
Free me from the net they have set for me, for you are my refuge.
Into your hands I commend my spirit;
you will redeem me, LORD, God of truth.
You hate those who serve worthless idols,
but I trust in the LORD.
I will rejoice and be glad in your mercy,
once you have seen my misery, [and] gotten to know the distress of my soul.
You will not abandon me into enemy hands, but will set my feet in a free and open space.
Be gracious to me, LORD, for I am in distress; affliction is wearing down my eyes, my throat and my insides.
My life is worn out by sorrow, and my years by sighing. My strength fails in my affliction; my bones are wearing down.
To all my foes I am a thing of scorn, and especially to my neighbors a horror to my friends. When they see me in public, they quickly shy away.
I am forgotten, out of mind like the dead;
I am like a worn-out tool.
I hear the whispers of the crowd; terrors are all around me. They conspire together against me; they plot to take my life.
But I trust in you, LORD; I say, “You are my God.”
My destiny is in your hands; rescue me from my enemies, from the hands of my pursuers.
Let your face shine on your servant; save me in your mercy.
Do not let me be put to shame, for I have called to you, LORD. Put the wicked to shame; reduce them to silence in Sheol.
Strike dumb their lying lips, which speak arrogantly against the righteous in contempt and scorn.
How great is your goodness, Lord, stored up for those who fear you. You display it for those who trust you, in the sight of the children of Adam.
You hide them in the shelter of your presence, safe from scheming enemies. You conceal them in your tent, away from the strife of tongues.
Blessed be the LORD, marvelously he showed to me his mercy in a fortified city.
Though I had said in my alarm, “I am cut off from your eyes.” Yet you heard my voice, my cry for mercy, when I pleaded with you for help.
Love the LORD, all you who are faithful to him. The LORD protects the loyal, but repays the arrogant in full.
Be strong and take heart, all who hope in the LORD.
-Because God had been faithful, David knows he can trust God.
-Quoted by Jesus when he was on the cross (31:6 is seen in Luke 23:46)
-Speaks of the besieged city, most likely Keilah in 1 Sam 23:5-14 and Saul’s attempt to capture David.
-According to Warren Wiersbe in his commentary of this psalm:
- David shows that when others do evil, we are to trust God for his strength (vv.1-8)
- David shows that when others cause you pain, you ask God for mercy (vv.9-18)
- David shows that when others see victory, you give God Glory (vv. 19-18*
- David makes sure his life was right before God.
- David puts his trust in the Lord.
- Remember that others are going through trial too.
-First Five App states, “Pride is the enemy of rest for our souls. And while humility is so opposite from almost everything we see in the world around us, Jesus is not asking us to do something He did not model for us. Our flesh will not produce this humility. We must daily take up our cross and follow Jesus and boldly approach God’s throne to receive mercy and find grace to help us.”
- Strong fortress
- Steadfast Love
- Sees our afflictions
- Knows the distress of our souls
- Does not deliver us into the hand of the enemy
- Sets our feet in a broad place
- Our times are in his hands
- His goodness is abundant
- Preserves the faithful
- Abundantly repays the one who acts in pride
I don’t do illness well. Unlike my husband who can live with cancer for 8 years and many not even know it, I cringe at sickness. I sit this morning with what seems like a daunting task of 7 more glasses of the worst tasting liquid I have had. My body is cold and empty. I want to be strong but this is the time I must call on the Lord. Last night as glass number 4 of 17 caught me in the throat…I looked up to God and cried for help. A simple procedure has brought me to my knees. As I am tired and worn down, I know I must make it to the bottom of glass 17. I have many diversions to choose from…reading material, my laptop, and endless distractions that good old Apple has brought to my eye! Yet, I know it is God that will get me through this morning. I go to the First Five App and smile as I read,” Don’t struggle to get out; instead, lean into it.” I can’t help but read on as they explain, “Remember those instructions if you ever find yourself in quicksand. Though most of us have never experienced getting stuck in quicksand, I’ve always been fascinated by the method of getting out of it. Experts say if you’re waist-deep in quicksand, you should actually lean back into it, putting more of your upper body into the quicksand. And while it may seem scary, you’ll actually float instead of sink. But if you try to stand, that’s a sure scenario for sinking in the sand. When we meet David in Psalm 31, he seems to be in the quicksand of life. He was no stranger to struggle. From his time as a shepherd boy to the time of his death, David faced circumstances that threatened to swallow him. Psalm 31 details David’s response to one of these sandpits of life. When we can’t see how God’s will is being worked out in our lives, we can still trust that His plan is good. When our circumstances take us places we wouldn’t have chosen, we, too, can choose to hope in God’s goodness and love. Yes, in the midst of our own desperate circumstances, releasing our lives completely to God can feel scary. But, just like quicksand, when we lean back into our faithful God, He will keep us afloat. It’s when we try to stand on our own that we risk sinking.”
With the thought of David in a cave fighting for his life or even worse…Jesus on the cross, a couple of glasses of liquid seem so trivial. God’s word has a way of putting so much into perspective. Yet, daily I forget and must submerge myself in this truth. Not sinking into quicksand, but still not wanting to embrace the next few hours…I go to the Lord in prayer.
We can take refuge in you. You are our rock of refuge and our strong fortress. You lead us and guide us. As David stated in the cave of Keilah and Jesus stated on the cross, “Into your hand I commit my spirit”, we too are to submit our lives to you. Thank you for being the one thing we can trust. So many times I can let pride get in the way of where my humility should be. I forget that I must come to you as frequently as needed to combat my fleshy desires. I want to do things my way and yet your perfect way waits for me every time. Forgive me for not choosing you first. Be gracious to us when we are in distress. When our eyes are wasted from grief and our soul and body is spent with sorrow, be gracious to us. Help us to find your strength when ours has failed because of our iniquity. May your face shine upon us and may we be saved in your steadfast love. May we be strong and may our hearts take courage as we wait for you Lord. In your great name, Amen!
Type of Psalm: Penitential/Thanksgiving
Emotions: When we need forgiveness
Of David. A maskil.
Blessed is the one whose fault is removed, whose sin is forgiven.
Blessed is the man to whom the LORD imputes no guilt, in whose spirit is no deceit.
Because I kept silent, my bones wasted away; I groaned all day long.
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength withered as in dry summer heat.
Then I declared my sin to you; my guilt I did not hide. I said, “I confess my transgression to the LORD,” and you took away the guilt of my sin.
Therefore every loyal person should pray to you in time of distress. Though flood waters threaten, they will never reach him.
You are my shelter; you guard me from distress; with joyful shouts of deliverance you surround me.
I will instruct you and show you the way you should walk, give you counsel with my eye upon you.
Do not be like a horse or mule, without understanding; with bit and bridle their temper is curbed, else they will not come to you.
Many are the sorrows of the wicked one,
but mercy surrounds the one who trusts in the LORD.
Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous; exult, all you upright of heart.
-Discusses the 4 basic facts about sin and forgiveness according to Warren Wiersbe:
- The Blessing of Forgiveness (vv. 1-2)
- The folly of Impenitence (The result of sin) (vv. 3-4)
- The way of Deliverance (vv. 5-7)
- The Joy of obedience (vv. 8-11)
-Paul quotes Psalm 32 in Romans 4:6-8
-Psalm 32 comes from 2 Samuel 11-12 (After David sinned with Bathsheba)
-It is a song of Wisdom
-The Lord had sent the prophet Nathan to David to confront him and his sins and bring God’s word of forgiveness (2 Samuel 12)
- Forgives the iniquity of our sins
- He is a hiding place
- He preserves us
- He surrounds us with shouts of deliverance
- Steadfast love
(The biggest part of me wants to be silent, but I know I must share. These words were not easy to write but I know that humility is the step I must take to reach the joy of forgiveness. I believe we all fight silent battles and today I will share one of mine.)
Humility is a tough subject to speak about. Harder than admitting my weakness when I am sick, admitting my faults to others is harder. As I read through Psalm 32, I feel the pangs of guilt that have held part of me in bondage for sometime. I’ve always wanted to do things the right way. I raised my kids in church. We prayed together daily. I tried to do the best that I knew how. Some how something changed in these past few years. As my oldest became physically anxious in church and unable to go, our family activity of church attendance broke. As I got more into the Bible, my home church teachings did not seem to match what I was learning. As weeks went by…the habit of church attendance was no longer a habit. My family and I no longer attend church. I know I need the fellowship of other believers and yet I choose to no longer make it a priority. I want to sugar-coat it with reasons that are truly just excuses, but I know I must humble myself and admit the truth. I no longer place value in church attendance as God asks me to do. Just as my body was physically weak yesterday, my soul is weaker yet. I want to ask God for forgiveness but next Sunday will most likely be the same. I have to make a choice. Warren Wiersbe discusses how there are three levels on which God can deal with you. “You must decide whether you want Him to treat you as a thing, an animal, or one of His own children.” Warren explains how David went through these levels in Psalm 32. “David was rebelling. So God had to treat David like a thing. God also had to treat David like an animal. David had acted like a horse-impulsively, he rushed ahead and sinned. And then He became stubborn like a mule and would not confess his sin. But God wants to deal with us as children.” We must decide if we are going to walk in rebellion, be stubborn, or allow God to guide us as his children.
Psalm 32 has helped me to see the power behind forgiveness. I want to be forgiven but that also means changing my ways. The first place to start was God’s word and the next place to go is to prayer.
You bless those that come to you humbly confessing their sins. You will instruct and teach your people on the way to go. You are righteous Lord. You are rightly to be praised. Thank you for being a forgiving God. Thank you for being our hiding place in times of trouble. Thank you for surrounding your people with shouts of deliverance. Your word today finds me in much shame and with much need to be humble. I come before this group of women wanting to share how you have helped me to endure and yet, I do not make going to church a priority. I know I need a church family and I know that you are calling me to greater fellowship, but my flesh is weak and my heart is unsure. My plans of family unity and church attendance is no longer a reality and yet I know that your plans ask for my presence no matter what. Forgive me Lord and may the joy of forgiveness help me to find my way back to you. Help me to no longer be silent. Help me to acknowledge my sin to you. Help me to confess my transgressions and I ask for forgiveness of my iniquities. Help us to offer prayer to you in time when you are found. Help us not to be like stubborn animals but may we come to you as children. Help us to seek your forgiveness Lord. In your Great name, Amen.
Type of Psalm: Praise and Thankfulness
Rejoice, you righteous, in the LORD;
praise from the upright is fitting.
Give thanks to the LORD on the harp;
on the ten-stringed lyre offer praise.
Sing to him a new song; skillfully play with joyful chant.
For the LORD’s word is upright; all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right. The earth is full of the mercy of the LORD.
By the LORD’s word the heavens were made; by the breath of his mouth all their host.
He gathered the waters of the sea as a mound; he sets the deep into storage vaults.
Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all who dwell in the world show him reverence.
For he spoke, and it came to be, commanded, and it stood in place.
The LORD foils the plan of nations, frustrates the designs of peoples.
But the plan of the LORD stands forever,
the designs of his heart through all generations.
Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people chosen as his inheritance.
From heaven the LORD looks down and observes the children of Adam,
From his dwelling place he surveys
all who dwell on earth.
The One who fashioned together their hearts is the One who knows all their works.
A king is not saved by a great army, nor a warrior delivered by great strength.
Useless is the horse for safety; despite its great strength, it cannot be saved.
Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon those who fear him, upon those who count on his mercy,
To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive through famine.
Our soul waits for the LORD, he is our help and shield.
For in him our hearts rejoice; in his holy name we trust.
May your mercy, LORD, be upon us; as we put our hope in you.
-From the Bible Study: “Psalms-Managing Our Emotions by Christian Bible Studies”
- “We think joy is dependent upon our circumstance, but the Psalms help us to realize that we can find joy in every circumstance.Joy stems from the knowledge of God’s work in our past, his plan for our present, and his power over our future.”
- Psalm 33 is a song of joy and a call to worship to assemble in celebration
- In the Hebrew, all pronouns in this psalm are plural, meaning that this joy is something that happens with others
- We express joy even if we are not joyful by finding our joy in God.
- God’s voice in this psalm is his actions and events.
- The secret of joy is to take our focus off of our circumstances and ourselves and put it firmly upon God and his goodness
- God is able to thwart the plans of the nations
- God’s plans stand firm forever! He is good and he never has evil plans
- God sees our hearts and our actions. He is concerned with our concerns.
- The word of the Lord is upright
- All his work is done in faithfulness
- He loves righteousness and justice
- The earth is full of the steadfast love of the Lord
- By the word of the Lord the heavens were made
- By the breath of his mouth all their host were made
- He gathers the waters of the sea as a heap
- He puts the deeps in the storehouses
- He spoke and it came to be
- He commanded and it stood firm
- The lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing
- He frustrates the plans of the peoples
- The counsel of the Lord stands forever
- The Lord looks down from heaven and sees all the children of man
- From where he is enthroned he looks out on all the inhabitants of the earth
- He fashions our hearts
- He observes our deeds
- His love is steadfast
- He is our help
- He is our shield
- Our heart is glad in him
- We can trust his Holy name
I lay in bed yet one more day. Yet, because of God’s word…I find joy. His truth continues to help me to seek what is higher and what is greater. My circumstances may change but His joy is everlasting!
The book of Psalms covers a variety of emotions. One of the common emotions is Joy. As I did the Bible Study: “Psalms-Managing Our Emotions” by Christian Bible Studies, I want to resonate with their words, “We think joy is dependent upon our circumstances, but the Psalms helps us to realize that we can find joy in every circumstance. Joy stems from the knowledge of God’s work in our past, his plans for our present, and his power over our future.”
Psalm 33 shows how this is done. In verses 1-9, David looks at the past.
- The word of the Lord is upright.
- His works are done in faithfulness.
- He loves justice and righteousness.
- The earth is full of his steadfast love.
- The heavens were made by his word.
- He gathered the waters.
- He spoke and it came to be.
- He commanded and it stood firm.
David then explains God’s plans for the present in verses 10-15.
- The Lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing.
- He frustrates the plans of the people’s.
- His counsel stands forever.
- He blesses the nation he has chosen as his heritage.
- He looks down and sees the children of man.
- He looks on all the inhabitants of the Earth.
David ends the Psalm by looking at God’s power over our future in verse 16-22.
- The eye of the Lord is on those who fear him.
- He delivers our soul from death.
- He will keep us alive in famine.
- He will be our help and our shield.
- We can trust in his holy name.
- His steadfast love will be always upon us.
We can find joy in all things as we can always find joy in you. Through our past, our present, and our future you are there and you are faithful. Your word is upright and we can stand on its truth to bring us everlasting joy. Thank you for all that you have done in the past, all you are doing in the present, and all you will do in the days to come. Forgive us when we seek to find temporary joy in our circumstances instead of everlasting joy in who you are. Help us to remember what you have done and continue to do. Help us to seek joy in who you are. May your truth always be in our heart and may we profess your joy from our mouths. May we find joy in the knowledge of your work in our past, your plans for our present, and your power over our future in all that we do. In your Great name, Amen!
Type of Psalm: Acrostic/Thanksgiving
Of David, when he feigned madness before Abimelech, who drove him out and he went away.
I will bless the LORD at all times;
his praise shall be always in my mouth.
My soul will glory in the LORD; let the poor hear and be glad.
Magnify the LORD with me; and let us exalt his name together.
I sought the LORD, and he answered me,
delivered me from all my fears.
Look to him and be radiant, and your faces may not blush for shame.
This poor one cried out and the LORD heard, and from all his distress he saved him.
The angel of the LORD encamps
around those who fear him, and he saves them.
Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the stalwart one who takes refuge in him.
Fear the LORD, you his holy ones; nothing is lacking to those who fear him.
The rich grow poor and go hungry,
but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
Come, children, listen to me; I will teach you fear of the LORD.
Who is the man who delights in life, who loves to see the good days?
Keep your tongue from evil, your lips from speaking lies.
Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
The eyes of the LORD are directed toward the righteous and his ears toward their cry.
The LORD’s face is against evildoers to wipe out their memory from the earth.
The righteous cry out, the LORD hears
and he rescues them from all their afflictions.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted,
saves those whose spirit is crushed.
Many are the troubles of the righteous,
but the LORD delivers him from them all.
He watches over all his bones; not one of them shall be broken.
Evil will slay the wicked; those who hate the righteous are condemned.
The LORD is the redeemer of the souls of his servants; and none are condemned who take refuge in him.
-The title connects the psalm with David’s dangerous experience with the Philistines (1 Samuel 21:10-22:1)
-According to Warren Wiersbe it explains how to live a life pleasing to God:
- Control your tongue
- Depart from evil and do good
- Seek peace and pursue it
- Trust the Lord because he is watching you
-According to Warran Wiersbe it explains why bad things happen:
- It is part of human life
- Satan is against us
- It is one of God’s tools to help us grow
-According to Warren Wiersbe this psalm shows that we are to entrust 5 burdens to the Lord:
- Trust the Lord with your frustrations (v.17)
- Trust the Lord with your feelings (v.18)
- Trust the Lord with your future (v.20)
- Trust the Lord with your foes (v.21)
- Trust the Lord with your failures (v. 22)
-According to Warren Wiersbe we can use this psalm to remember what to do if things are not going well:
- Remember that god is near-The more we like God the nearer we will be to him.
- Remember God knows the meaning of a broken heart
- God give grace to the humble (James 4:6)
-According to Warren Wiersbe this psalm shows that:
- “Praise sanctifies us, Magnifies the Lord, and unity is created”.
- “The Lord does the following when we praise him: He answers us, Delivers us, Hears us, Saves us, and Makes us lack nothing.”
- He answers us
- He delivers us from all our fears
- He hears us
- He saves us from trouble
- The Lord is good
- Those who fear him have no lack
- Those who seek him lack no good things
- The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous
- His ears are toward our cry
- The face of the Lord is against those who do evil.
- The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
- He saves the crushed in spirit
- The lord redeems the life of his servant
Warren Wiersbe helps us to break down Psalm 34. He speaks about how David is teaching us how to live each day in a way that will be pleasing to God. (The following are notes based on Warren Wiersbe’s devotions and commentaries on Psalm 34.)
- We are to Bless the Lord. We bless the Lord because as David states in Psalm 34:1-3, praise will sanctify us at all times, it magnifies the Lord, and unity is created.
- We are to seek the Lord. In seeking the Lord we learn what he does when we praise him. As David states in Psalm 34:4-8, the Lord answers us, delivers us, hears us, saves us, and makes us lack nothing.
- We are to fear the Lord. David helps us to know how to have a good day in Psalm 34:11-16. He points out that we are to control our tongue, depart from evil and do good, seek peace and pursue it, and trust the Lord because he is watching you.
- We are to trust the Lord even if things do not go our way. Warren Wiersbe points out that even if things are not good we are to remember that God is always near, we are to remember that God knows the meaning of a broken heart, and that God gives grace to the humble. Warren also points out that bad things will happen because it is a part of human life, Satan is against us, and affliction is a tool God uses to help us grow.
You are rightly to be praised. You sanctify, you answer our call, you deliver us, you hear us, you save us, and because of you we lack nothing. Thank you for all that you provide when we are willing to praise you. It is hard at times to fear you as we should. Our flesh gets in the way when we should be controlling our tongue, departing from evil, seeking peace, and trusting you. Forgive us for the times we do not seek you and fear you as we should. Help us to trust you Lord even when things do not go as we would like. Help us to understand that you don’t prevent afflictions but that you deliver us from them. Help us to trust you with our frustrations, our feelings, our future, our foes, and our failures as your word guides us to do. In your Great name, Amen!
Type of Psalm: Implecatory
Oppose, O LORD, those who oppose me;
war upon those who make war upon me.
Take up the shield and buckler; rise up in my defense.
Brandish lance and battle-ax against my pursuers. Say to my soul, “I am your salvation.”
Let those who seek my life be put to shame and disgrace. Let those who plot evil against me be turned back and confounded.
Make them like chaff before the wind,
with the angel of the LORD driving them on.
Make their way slippery and dark, with the angel of the LORD pursuing them.
Without cause they set their snare for me;
without cause they dug a pit for me.
Let ruin overtake them unawares; let the snare they have set catch them; let them fall into the pit they have dug.
Then I will rejoice in the LORD, exult in God’s salvation.
My very bones shall say, “O LORD, who is like you, Who rescue the afflicted from the powerful, the afflicted and needy from the despoiler?”
Malicious witnesses rise up, accuse me of things I do not know.
They repay me evil for good; my soul is desolate.
Yet I, when they were ill, put on sackcloth,
afflicted myself with fasting, sobbed my prayers upon my bosom.
I went about in grief as for my brother,
bent in mourning as for my mother.
Yet when I stumbled they gathered with glee, gathered against me and I did not know it. They slandered me without ceasing;
without respect they mocked me, gnashed their teeth against me.
O Lord, how long will you look on? Restore my soul from their destruction, my very life from lions!
Then I will thank you in the great assembly; I will praise you before the mighty throng.
Do not let lying foes rejoice over me, my undeserved enemies wink knowingly.
They speak no words of peace, but against the quiet in the land they fashion deceitful speech.
They open wide their mouths against me.
They say, “Aha! Good! Our eyes have seen it!”
You see this, LORD; do not be silent; Lord, do not withdraw from me.
Awake, be vigilant in my defense, in my cause, my God and my Lord.
Defend me because you are just, LORD;
my God, do not let them rejoice over me.
Do not let them say in their hearts, “Aha! Our soul!” Do not let them say, “We have devoured that one!”
Put to shame and confound all who relish my misfortune. Clothe with shame and disgrace those who lord it over me.
But let those who favor my just cause
shout for joy and be glad. May they ever say, “Exalted be the LORD who delights in the peace of his loyal servant.”
Then my tongue shall recount your justice, declare your praise, all the day long.
-This psalm is from 1 Samuel 19-26
-According to Warren Wiersbe:
- David prays 1stthat when he encounters trouble
- David then admits his helplessness
-According to Warren Wiersbe David makes 3 requests to God:
- Protect me (1-10)
- Reward me (11-18)
- Vindicate me (19-28)
- He delivers the poor
- Delights in the welfare of his servant
Psalm 35 is another imprecatory psalm. This is a psalm where the writer is seeking revenge.Warren Wiersbe points out the actions of David. He explains how David first went to God in prayer when he was encountering trouble. Psalm 35:1-6 is David’s call out to God. He makes the request to God to protect him. David then admits his helplessness in verse 35:10, “All my bones shall say, ‘O Lord, who is like you,delivering the poor from him who is too strong for him, the poor and needy from him who robs him?”. The psalms never fail to show us the way. What if we went to God in prayer at all times? What if we were able to admit our helplessness before we tried to fix things ourselves? David shows us a great example that we can learn from. David is upset but instead of seeking revenge on his own, he gives it up to God.
Warren Wiersbe explains how there are different levels of reactions to others when we are hurt. The human level will repay good for good and evil for evil. This is better than the demonic level which returns evil for good. Warren points out that what David does is not the human level or the demonic level as he chooses the divine level. The divine level returns good for evil.
When we are in trouble our human instinct is to take things into our own hands. Our instinct when someone hurts us is to hurt them back. We have other choices though and God’s word shows us what these choices are. Let’s seek God first in prayer, admit our helplessness to him, and seek to return good for evil!
You are the one we should seek first when trouble comes. You are the one that can help us when we are helpless. You deliver the poor and the weak. Thank you for being a righteous God. Thank you for hearing our troubles and helping us when we are weak. So many times it is hard to come to you first. So many times it is easy to want to seek revenge over your perfect justice. So many times it is hard to admit we are weak. You are the perfect vindicator and yet it takes humility to ask for your vindication. Teach us Lord how to come to you and ask for you to search our heart and soul. Help us to reach out to you first and to admit humbly when we need your help. Help us to not seek revenge on others but to return good for evil. Help us to have a heart like David even when we have been wronged. In your great name, Amen!