Thought for the day – Psalm 18


Psalm 18:46-50 – Selected Bible reading

46 The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock. Exalted be God my Saviour! 47 He is the God who avenges me, who subdues nations under me, 48 who saves me from my enemies, You exalted me above my foes; from violent men you rescued me. Therefore I will praise you among the nations, O LORD; I will sing praises to your name. He gives his king great victories; he shows unfailing kindness to his anointed, to David and his descendants forever.


Psalm 18 – God’s unfailing love

PLEASE NOTE –Psalm 18 has 50 verses. Space and time stop presenting it all, but only parts here. But please do read all Psalm 18. It is well worth reading! (Click here to read and listen to all of it here, or read it at the bottom of this page.)

(Verses 1-6) David gives his Music Director Psalm 18 to sing to mark God’s saving him from King Saul and all who seek his life. He praises God, his strength, rock, fortress, deliverer, refuge, shield, salvation, and stronghold. He recalls crying to God for help, God’s answer, and escaping death.

(Verses 7-15) David graphically compares God’s response to his prayer and fierce onslaught from would-be killers to a wild terrifying storm on land and sea. In poetic style he describes an earthquake, violent rainstorm, hail, thunder, lightning strikes, mountainous tempestuous waves, and gales. God’s same almighty power frightens and scatters his enemies. God is on his side.

(Verses 16-19) David tells of his rescue by God who reached down, took hold, and drew him out of the troubled waters of all-out enemy action against him. Too weak to save himself, God saved, supported, and put him in a safe and pleasant place. God rescued him and delighted in him.

(Verses 20-27) God saves David because he is His praying child, committed to God. What David now says is not to gain merit, but to show what each disciple of the Lord should be like. It describes his character. He should be righteous, clean, obedient, following, keeping God’s law, blameless, resisting sin, faithful, pure, and humble. None of us can achieve that by our own efforts. Only by putting our faith in Jesus, who bore our sins and its penalty on the cross, and by asking for His help, can we start to live like that, or even want to.

(Verses 28-36) David insists that God alone works in and for him, giving him light and courageous strength. His way is ‘perfect’, His word ‘flawless’ and He is his shield, refuge, and Rock. He provides David with strength, security, speed to escape, stability, uplifting, training for battle, and sustaining. ‘Your help has made me great’, says Israel’s most famous king. Even his path and walking on it, are God’s doing.

(Verses 37- 45) David explains how God has given him victories over his foes and defended him from attacks from some of his ‘people’. All this work by God makes King David now the ‘head of nations’, of whom foreigners hear, fear and tremble.

(Verses 46-50) David ends as he started – by praising God. He summarises his thanks for who God is and what He does for him – always a good thing to do. He closes with God’s ‘unfailing love’ to David and to his ‘descendants forever.’ We can know that love even more, if we trust in our crucified and risen Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.

(Below is Psalm 18 in full)


Psalm 18

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the Lord. He sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said:

I love you, Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise,
    and I have been saved from my enemies.
The cords of death entangled me;
    the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
The cords of the grave coiled around me;
    the snares of death confronted me.

In my distress I called to the Lord;
    I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice;
    my cry came before him, into his ears.
The earth trembled and quaked,
    and the foundations of the mountains shook;
    they trembled because he was angry.
Smoke rose from his nostrils;
    consuming fire came from his mouth,
    burning coals blazed out of it.
He parted the heavens and came down;
    dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He mounted the cherubim and flew;
    he soared on the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him—
    the dark rain clouds of the sky.
12 Out of the brightness of his presence clouds advanced,
    with hailstones and bolts of lightning.
13 The Lord thundered from heaven;
    the voice of the Most High resounded.
14 He shot his arrows and scattered the enemy,
    with great bolts of lightning he routed them.
15 The valleys of the sea were exposed
    and the foundations of the earth laid bare
at your rebuke, Lord,
    at the blast of breath from your nostrils.

16 He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
    he drew me out of deep waters.
17 He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
    from my foes, who were too strong for me.
18 They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
    but the Lord was my support.
19 He brought me out into a spacious place;
    he rescued me because he delighted in me.

20 The Lord has dealt with me according to my righteousness;
    according to the cleanness of my hands he has rewarded me.
21 For I have kept the ways of the Lord;
    I am not guilty of turning from my God.
22 All his laws are before me;
    I have not turned away from his decrees.
23 I have been blameless before him
    and have kept myself from sin.
24 The Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness,
    according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.

25 To the faithful you show yourself faithful,
    to the blameless you show yourself blameless,
26 to the pure you show yourself pure,
    but to the devious you show yourself shrewd.
27 You save the humble
    but bring low those whose eyes are haughty.
28 You, Lord, keep my lamp burning;
    my God turns my darkness into light.
29 With your help I can advance against a troop;
    with my God I can scale a wall.

30 As for God, his way is perfect:
    The Lord’s word is flawless;
    he shields all who take refuge in him.
31 For who is God besides the Lord?
    And who is the Rock except our God?
32 It is God who arms me with strength
    and keeps my way secure.
33 He makes my feet like the feet of a deer;
    he causes me to stand on the heights.
34 He trains my hands for battle;
    my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
35 You make your saving help my shield,
    and your right hand sustains me;
    your help has made me great.
36 You provide a broad path for my feet,
    so that my ankles do not give way.

37 I pursued my enemies and overtook them;
    I did not turn back till they were destroyed.
38 I crushed them so that they could not rise;
    they fell beneath my feet.
39 You armed me with strength for battle;
    you humbled my adversaries before me.
40 You made my enemies turn their backs in flight,
    and I destroyed my foes.
41 They cried for help, but there was no one to save them—
    to the Lord, but he did not answer.
42 I beat them as fine as windblown dust;
    I trampled them like mud in the streets.
43 You have delivered me from the attacks of the people;
    you have made me the head of nations.
People I did not know now serve me,
44     foreigners cower before me;
    as soon as they hear of me, they obey me.
45 They all lose heart;
    they come trembling from their strongholds.

46 The Lord lives! Praise be to my Rock!
    Exalted be God my Saviour!
47 He is the God who avenges me,
    who subdues nations under me,
48     who saves me from my enemies.
You exalted me above my foes;
    from a violent man you rescued me.
49 Therefore I will praise you, Lord, among the nations;
    I will sing the praises of your name.

50 He gives his king great victories;
    he shows unfailing love to his anointed,
    to David and to his descendants forever.