1 A prayer of David.
Hear, O LORD, my righteous plea; listen to my cry. Give ear to my prayer—it does not rise from deceitful lips. 2 May my vindication come from you; may your eyes see what is right. 3 Though you probe my heart and examine me at night, though you test me, you will find nothing; I have resolved that my mouth will not sin. 4 As for the deeds of men—by the word of your lips I have kept myself from the ways of the violent. 5 My steps have held to your paths; my feet have not slipped. 6 I call on you, O God, for you will answer me; give ear to me and hear my prayer.
7 Show the wonder of your great love, you who save by your right hand those who take refuge in you from their foes.
8 Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings 9 from the wicked who assail me, from my mortal enemies who surround me. 10 They close up their callous hearts, and their mouths speak with arrogance. 11 They have tracked me down, they now surround me, with eyes alert, to throw me to the ground. 12 They are like a lion hungry for prey, like a great lion crouching in cover.
13 Rise up, O LORD, confront them, bring them down; rescue me from the wicked by your sword. 14 O LORD, by your hand save me from such men, from men of this world whose reward is in this life. You still the hunger of those you cherish; their sons have plenty, and they store up wealth for their children.
15 And I—in righteousness I shall see your face; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with seeing your likeness.
Psalm 17 – What to ask God to do for me
(Verses 1-6) David’s requests to God end with ‘me’. ‘Hear me’ comes first. His plea is ‘righteous’, not ‘deceitful’. No deceit marks David’s words. If you trust in Jesus, God counts you ‘righteous’. He treats Jesus’ righteousness as yours. He knows that God sees, probes, tests and examines his life, talk, non-violence, and his walk with Him. God knows all about you, too.
(Verse 7) Then, by ‘Show me’ David asks to see God’s great and wonderful love. That love saves, gives refuge, keeps, and hides from wicked threats and assaults of wicked enemies who surround and threaten him.
(Verses 8-14) David next asks God, ’Keep me’ and ‘Hide me’ under God’s ‘wings’, as chickens hide under a hen’s wings. God keeps all who trust in Him as ‘the apple of [His] eye’ eternally. Jesus tells those in Jerusalem that He longed to hide them ‘as a hen hides her chickens under her wings’, but they declined His invitation. (Luke 13:34). Jesus bore your sins on the cross. His death will hide you from being judged and punished in Hell if you accept His invitation to repent and trust in Him. Cruel, and arrogant foes track David, like a hungry lion, to try to catch and kill him. So, he next pleads, ‘Save me’ and ‘Rescue me’ to escape from his evil enemies. The three foes of all who trust and follow Jesus are the ‘world’, the ‘flesh’ and the ‘devil’. They oppose Christ and us by promoting sinful thinking and living, wrong desires within us, and by applying Satanic power which is, at times, too subtle or too strong for us. But Jesus, our divine Friend, is far stronger and wiser than that evil trio. Always trust and obey Jesus in all problems. David knows God will meet all his earthly needs.
(Verse 15) David looks forward to waking up in Heaven after death, in his God-given righteousness. He will be satisfied to see God’s face and be made like Him. Today, that awaits all sinners who have turned from their sin (known as ‘repentance’) and trusted in Jesus personally! It awaits you, too, if you trust in Jesus. Well, do you?