1 For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil of David.
Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea; 2 hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught 3 at the voice of the enemy, at the stares of the wicked; for they bring down suffering upon me and revile me in their anger. 4 My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death assail me. 5 Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me. 6 I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest—7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert; Selah 8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.”
9 Confuse the wicked, O Lord, confound their speech, for I see violence and strife in the city 10 Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it. 11 Destructive forces are at work in the city; threats and lies never leave its streets.
12 If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were raising himself against me, I could hide from him. 13 But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend, 14 with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship as we walked with the throng at the house of God
15 Let death take my enemies by surprise; let them go down alive to the grave, for evil finds lodging among them.
16 But I call to God, and the LORD saves me.
17 Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and he hears my voice. 18 He ransoms me unharmed from the battle waged against me, even though many oppose me. 19 God, who is enthroned for ever, will hear them and afflict them— Selahremember, Selah seems to mean ‘pause, and think about that.’ men who never change their ways and have no fear of God. 20 My companion attacks his friends; he violates his covenant. 21 His speech is smooth as butter, yet war is in his heart; his words are more soothing than oil, yet they are drawn swords.
22 Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. 23 But you, O God, will bring down the wicked into the pit of corruption; bloodthirsty and deceitful men will not live out half their days. But as for me, I trust in you.
Trusting God in Trouble
(Verses 1-3) A child speaks directly to a caring parent. David asks God to listen to his prayer and not ignore his plea. He suffers as angry enemies slander, stare at, and revile him. He tells his caring Father.
(Verses 4-8) He trembles in anguish, fear and horror. They want him dead. He wants to fly away as a dove flees a violent storm to shelter in a safe and distant desert.
(Verses 9-11) He asks God to confuse and confound his wicked, violent foes who continuously prowl around the city’s walls and streets. They fill it with malice, abuse, destruction, threats, and lies.
(Verses 12-14) He could handle opposition by a known foe, but a once close friend is now his foe. They both enjoyed worship before and ‘sweet fellowship’. A once-believing friend turning against you hurts.
(Verse 15) We can see why David prays against his enemies. But Christians today must pray for any opposing us to turn to Jesus Christ and receive changed hearts. Romans 5:10 says, ‘when we were God’s enemies we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son’. Jesus bore God’s wrath against our sins so He can forgive and give us—His former ‘enemies’—eternal life. We must love our enemies, too. God is King and will deal with David’s foes. So David confidently prays. God tells sinners to repent and trust Jesus. David shares the details of his ex-friend’s state with God. That is always a good idea!
(Verses 22-23) Hell (‘pit of corruption’) awaits rebel sinners. But God says, ‘Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall’. Is your response like David’s, ‘But as for me, I trust in you.’?
|↑1||remember, Selah seems to mean ‘pause, and think about that.’|