Psalm 139 (NIV)
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1 You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.
7 Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.
19 If only you, God, would slay the wicked!
Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
20 They speak of you with evil intent;
your adversaries misuse your name.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord,
and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22 I have nothing but hatred for them;
I count them my enemies.
23 Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.
We get to sit in with King David as he contemplates God’s character and attributes. This contemplation and meditation about the Lord’s character lead David to worship God.
Verses 1 – 6 recall God’s omniscience (God knows everything).
Verses 7 – 12 show God’s omnipresence (God is everywhere).
Verses 13 – 16 point out that God spans space and time, knowing us and everything about us before our life began, throughout our lifetime, and to the day we die.
In verses 17 – 18, David is awestruck by God’s care and attention to detail about every aspect of David’s (and our) lives. Nothing about us is too small for God to care for and keep track of, outnumbering even the grains of sand.
David is captivated by God’s all-knowing, all-present, and all-caring attributes that he cannot bear to think about anyone who hates God. Verses 19 – 22 capture David’s thoughts about those who would defy the Living God.
As David wraps up his meditations, he reflects on his individual character and life, asking God to reveal anything in his life that would come between him and God.
As we consider David’s meditation and worship time, may we see God in His infinite power, love, holiness, wisdom, and beauty.
And as we catch glimpses of God’s overwhelming glory, may we worship Him and invite Him in to examine our lives, not to our shame, but to His care and love.