Psalm 22

Psalm 22

For the director of music. To the tune of “The Doe of the Morning.” A psalm of David.

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
    Why are you so far from saving me,
    so far from my cries of anguish?
My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
    by night, but I find no rest.

Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One;
    you are the one Israel praises.
In you our ancestors put their trust;
    they trusted and you delivered them.
To you they cried out and were saved;
    in you they trusted and were not put to shame.

But I am a worm and not a man,
    scorned by everyone, despised by the people.
All who see me mock me;
    they hurl insults, shaking their heads.
“He trusts in the Lord,” they say,
    “let the Lord rescue him.
Let him deliver him,
    since he delights in him.”

Yet you brought me out of the womb;
    you made me trust in you, even at my mother’s breast.
10 From birth I was cast on you;
    from my mother’s womb you have been my God.

11 Do not be far from me,
    for trouble is near
    and there is no one to help.

12 Many bulls surround me;
    strong bulls of Bashan encircle me.
13 Roaring lions that tear their prey
    open their mouths wide against me.
14 I am poured out like water,
    and all my bones are out of joint.
My heart has turned to wax;
    it has melted within me.
15 My mouth is dried up like a potsherd,
    and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth;
    you lay me in the dust of death.

16 Dogs surround me,
    a pack of villains encircles me;
    they pierce my hands and my feet.
17 All my bones are on display;
    people stare and gloat over me.
18 They divide my clothes among them
    and cast lots for my garment.

19 But you, Lord, do not be far from me.
    You are my strength; come quickly to help me.
20 Deliver me from the sword,
    my precious life from the power of the dogs.
21 Rescue me from the mouth of the lions;
    save me from the horns of the wild oxen.

22 I will declare your name to my people;
    in the assembly I will praise you.
23 You who fear the Lord, praise him!
    All you descendants of Jacob, honor him!
    Revere him, all you descendants of Israel!
24 For he has not despised or scorned
    the suffering of the afflicted one;
he has not hidden his face from him
    but has listened to his cry for help.

25 From you comes the theme of my praise in the great assembly;
    before those who fear you I will fulfill my vows.
26 The poor will eat and be satisfied;
    those who seek the Lord will praise him—
    may your hearts live forever!

27 All the ends of the earth
    will remember and turn to the Lord,
and all the families of the nations
    will bow down before him,
28 for dominion belongs to the Lord
    and he rules over the nations.

29 All the rich of the earth will feast and worship;
    all who go down to the dust will kneel before him—
    those who cannot keep themselves alive.
30 Posterity will serve him;
    future generations will be told about the Lord.
31 They will proclaim his righteousness,
    declaring to a people yet unborn:
    He has done it!
(Psalm 22:1-31 NIV)

Today we take a look at Psalm 22 – written by David.  This is clearly a messianic psalm, looking forward from David’s viewpoint to Messiah (Jesus).

Today, let’s take a slightly different approach.  Rather than go verse by verse or phrase by phrase, let’s look at the parallels of this psalm to Jesus in the four gospel accounts.

  • Verse 1 – “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
    Jesus quotes this phrase from David’s psalm as He hung on the cross (Matthew 27:46).
  • Verses 6 – 8  – people hurling their verbal abuse at Him (Matthew 27:39-43)
  • Verses 12 -13 – those in power verbally abusing Him (Luke 23:35-39)
  • Verses 14 – 15 – Jesus’ physical pain and thirst on the cross (John 19:28)
  • Verse 16 – Jesus is crucified (Luke 23:26-33)
  • Verse 18 – Soldiers divide up Jesus’ clothes (Luke 23:34b)
  • Verses 19 – 21 – Jesus commits Himself to His Father in death (Luke 23:46)
  • Verse 31 – Jesus’ mission accomplished and proclaimed (John 19:30)

Join me in walking through this psalm again and seeing God’s love, sovereignty, pain, and loss in order to forgive our sins and reconcile us to Himself.

Blessings,
~kevin

Psalm 128

Psalm 128

A song of ascents.

Blessed are all who fear the Lord,
    who walk in obedience to him.
You will eat the fruit of your labor;
    blessings and prosperity will be yours.
Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
    within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
    around your table.
Yes, this will be the blessing
    for the man who fears the Lord.

May the Lord bless you from Zion;
    may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
    all the days of your life.
May you live to see your children’s children—
    peace be on Israel.
(Psalm 128:1-6 NIV)

Psalm 128 is another Song of Ascents, a psalm for those on the pilgrimage of life.  Psalm 128 picks up where Psalm 127 ends, with the blessing of family.  Like many other psalms, the author is not named, and there is no indication as to when it was written.

The psalmist begins by listing the reason for blessings – fear (healthy respect) of the Lord and living obediently according to His commands (v. 1).  The psalmist uses the word “walk”, which involves action and intention.  The psalmist did not say “run”, which can only be kept up for short periods of time, nor did he say “sit”, which implies passiveness or inaction.

The psalmist’s use of the word “walk” also shows direction toward the Lord.  The person’s will, their heart, is pointed toward the Lord.  This is the inner life of the person, their desire to obey the Lord.  The person walking shows the outer life of the person, their taking action to be in agreement with their inner life, to move toward the Lord.

It’s easy to write these words, but hard to live them, isn’t it?  At least it is for me.  I feel the Apostle Paul’s pain and struggle in Romans 7:14-25, where he says his will and his actions are often not aligned.  Paul wants to do the right thing but doesn’t (sins of omission), and the bad things he doesn’t want to do, he ends up doing (sins of commission).  The struggle is real, friends!

The Lord will manifest these blessings on those who walk with Him in multiple ways:

  • The psalmist was in an agrarian economy; they were farmers.  Their hard work will pay off – their crops will flourish, and there will be enough to eat and some to sell for profit (v. 2).
  • The family will flourish like a garden (v. 3):
    • The wife, like a grapevine, will bear the fruit of her womb and have children.
    • The children will grow like new shoots sprouting up around an olive tree.  Olive trees send out underground roots that sprout up as new olive trees.  The old olive tree in the middle eventually dies at a very old age, but is now surrounded by young and fruitful olive trees from its roots.  A wonderful analogy for the continuity of life across generations, isn’t it?

In verse 4, the psalmist stops to ponder and meditate, to think about the blessings of walking with the Lord. Sometimes, like the psalmist, it’s good to stop and consider the goodness of God, and the blessings of walking with Him.   We see God’s hand of provision and protection on our lives, and we simply say “thank You, Lord” for all that He has done, all that He is doing, and know that we can trust Him with the future as well.

In verse 5, the psalmist shares his thoughts – the blessings, the result of walking with God in his family – with the city of Jerusalem.  The psalmist is encouraging others to walk with the Lord and partake in the blessings the Lord offers.  As families walk with the Lord, the larger community (city) prospers.

In verse 6, the psalmist extends the idea of generational blessing as his children walk with the Lord and teach their children to walk with the Lord.  The psalmist desires to see (and for others to see) the Lord’s blessing on the future generations who walk with Him, to see grandchildren walking with the Lord.  The blessing then extends from families to communities (in their example, Jerusalem), and from communities to the entire nation (in their example, Israel).

May we, no matter which generation, young or old, have this same goal, to walk with the Lord, and to pray faithfully for our children and our children’s children to walk with the Lord as well.

That single olive tree, if well tended over many generations, can become an entire grove.

Blessings,
~kevin

Psalm 127

Psalm 127

A song of ascents. Of Solomon.

Unless the Lord builds the house,
    the builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
    the guards stand watch in vain.
In vain you rise early
    and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat—
    for he grants sleep to those he loves.

Children are a heritage from the Lord,
    offspring a reward from him.
Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
    are children born in one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
    whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
    when they contend with their opponents in court.
(Psalm 127:1-5 NIV)

In our last time together, we looked at Psalm 126, where we saw the psalmist rejoice in the Lord’s restoration of blessings.  The Israelites certainly knew the pain of loss – loss of loved ones, loss of freedom, loss of relationship to God, loss of joy.  When they turned their hearts back to the Lord, then their seeds of faith, watered by their tears and warmed by God’s love, sprouted into a tremendous blessing that ultimately yielded an abundant harvest of joy.

In today’s psalm, we see Solomon identified as the author.  This is the same King Solomon who wrote many of the Proverbs, and who penned Ecclesiastes (“Vanity of vanities! All is vanity.” – Ecclesiastes 1:2 NASB).

In verses 1 – 2, Solomon voices a similar idea, that human efforts without God are in vain.  This does not alleviate our need to work hard and to work well at whatever the Lord gives us to do.   Other scriptures, both Old and New Testament, are quite clear on this – don’t be a sluggard (lazy) – take lessons from the ant, whatever you do, do it for the Lord with all your might, if you don’t work, you don’t eat, etc.

Notice that Solomon recognizes that God takes care of us and provides for us, even giving us sleep (v. 2).  Solomon had written about this before, recognizing that God gives us rest:

When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
    when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
(Proverbs 3:24 NIV)

The theme and focus of Solomon’s thoughts in verses 1 – 2 is not on us, but on God. Author and pastor Eugene Peterson expresses it this way:

“The pilgrimage is not at the center; the Lord is at the center. No matter how hard they struggled to get there, no matter what they did in the way of heroics—fending off bandits, clubbing lions and crushing wolves—that is not what is to be sung. Psalm 127 insists on a perspective in which our effort is at the periphery and God’s work is at the center.”
(Eugene H. Peterson, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction
(Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1980), p. 107)

 

In the second half of the psalm (verses 3 – 5), Solomon contrasts all the things done in vain (verses 1 – 2) with work that will last and hold value – raising children.

Solomon recognizes that children are a heritage, a priceless and lasting gift from the Lord (v. 3).  Yes, parents are obviously involved in the creation of the children, but the gift of having children comes from God Himself.

Solomon then describes the tremendous value that children bring to the family (v. 4).  Just as arrows in the hand of a skilled hunter help bring in food, and arrows in the hand of a warrior protect the people behind the front lines, so children help provide for and protect the family.

Solomon is not referring to child soldiers or using children as indentured servants here – he is talking about children who have grown, matured, and have been trained in basic life skills and can add value to the family.  In our modern culture, think in terms of 18 – 21-year-old children that can go to work, hold a job, and be responsible for their own well-being as well as helping their parents and other siblings.

Finally, Solomon concludes this psalm by reminding us of God’s blessing of children in our lives (v. 5).  Solomon identifies multiple children in a family as a blessing from the Lord, just as a warrior is blessed with multiple arrows in his quiver.

Solomon closes by recognizing the tremendous value of advocacy within a family when faced with outside opposition.  In ancient civilizations, the city gates were the place of meeting and commerce, and also where disputes were settled and justice was dispensed.

The assumption here is that the accused family is innocent, but a wrongful accusation has been brought against them.  Rather than the father trying to defend himself alone against the accusers, having children of age standing together with the father provides honor and integrity to the matter.  Remember, in ancient times there were no video surveillance cameras, no cell phones, no photography – only the word of one person or group against another’s.  Having advocates (multiple sets of eyes) within a family in the marketplace prevented unscrupulous people from taking advantage of individuals.

May we see God at the center of everything we are and do.

May we see our children as a blessing from the Lord, and an integral part of our family dynamic and life.

Blessings,
~kevin

Psalm 126

Psalm 126

A song of ascents.

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
    we were like those who dreamed.
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
    our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
    “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
    and we are filled with joy.

Restore our fortunes, Lord,
    like streams in the Negev.
Those who sow with tears
    will reap with songs of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
    carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
    carrying sheaves with them.
(Psalm 126:1-6 NIV)

This psalm is another undated psalm with no author specified.  The overall themes are what the Lord has done on behalf of His people (v. 1, 2, 3), and the peoples’ joyful response in songs of joy (v. 2, 5, 6).

Many commentators link this psalm with the return of the exiles to Jerusalem after 70 years of exile.  Jeremiah had predicted that God’s people would be evicted out of the Promised Land if they did not worship Him and live according to His ways.  Jeremiah also shared God’s promise that after their discipline was over, they would return to the land that God had given them.

Verses 1 – 2 capture the joy and wonder of the returning exiles.  We see a parallel joy recorded in Ezra 3:11-13.  In this passage, Ezra recorded the joyful shouts and singing of the returning exiles, some aged folks that had seen the original temple as a child before their families were exiled, and some young folks that had heard the stories but had never been to Jerusalem.  In both cases, everyone was filled with praise to the Lord for bringing them home.

Have you ever seen God come through for you, when life seemed impossible and all hope was gone?  The joy of experiencing God’s unanticipated blessings can be overwhelming.  That joy, however, is often a result of facing trials and persevering in what God calls us to be and to do.  The joy that God’s people experienced and celebrated came after 70 years of exile, followed by much manual labor to rebuild the foundation of the Temple.

In the second half of verse 2, the psalmist notes that other nations recognized that God was behind their restoration and blessing.  In verse 3, the psalmist wholeheartedly agrees, giving God the glory and thanking Him for all He has done.

In verse 4, the psalmist asks the Lord to restore their fortunes – in other words, to continue the blessings.  The psalmist was extremely grateful for this blessing, and also recognized that they could not survive without God’s continued hand upon them.  Just as the land could not sustain life without the annual rains, the psalmist knew that God’s people could not survive without God’s continued hand of blessing upon them.

Verses 5 – 6 express the same thought twice.   The psalmist acknowledges that life is hard, but must be lived in faith.  In the midst of trials and tribulations and tears, God calls us to step out in faith, with the promise of a blessing later.  Seeds of faith sown in tears will indeed be blessed by God and end in spiritual blessing later.  The word picture of the farmer sowing seeds in tears and later reaping the harvest with joy says it all.

This psalm has great personal significance to me.  The Lord brought this psalm to my attention during a very hard time in my life, when I was feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders and not seeing much hope of relief for the future.  I knew I needed to break out of the sadness, but was not sure what to do or how to get started.  I knew God was faithful and His Word was true, but I also knew that He sometimes leads His loved ones through the desert experiences of life to teach and prepare them for the next phase.

When my church put a notice in the bulletin looking for volunteers for several ministries, the Lord prompted me to check out one of the needs.   That small step of faith, to lend a hand to one of the ministries, was truly seed sown in tears.  And I can testify that serving with that ministry was one of the greatest blessings during that phase of my life – the seeds sown in tears came back a hundredfold harvest in joy.

May you be encouraged today as you face your trials and persevere in what God calls you to be and to do.

What small seed are you willing to plant in faith, watered by your tears, giving that seed to the Lord to grow into a harvest of praise and joy?

Blessings,

~kevin

Psalm 130

Psalm 130

A song of ascents.

Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord;
    Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
    to my cry for mercy.

If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,
    Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness,
    so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
    and in his word I put my hope.
I wait for the Lord
    more than watchmen wait for the morning,
    more than watchmen wait for the morning.

Israel, put your hope in the Lord,
    for with the Lord is unfailing love
    and with him is full redemption.
He himself will redeem Israel
    from all their sins.
(Psalm 130:1-8 NIV)

In this psalm, David cries out to God for mercy and forgiveness as he goes through the journey of life.  Like a lot of psalms, we don’t know the specific background as to when or why David wrote these words.

David begins with the words “out of the depths”, using verbal imagery of being a drowning man urgently in need of rescue.  David calls out to the only One who can rescue him from his calamity – the Lord.  This is not a silent prayer – David is literally, audibly calling out to God, crying out as a child for their father’s or mother’s help.

From verse 3, we see that David’s predicament may be of his own doing, as David confesses his sinfulness before the Lord.  David knows that he is not in righteous standing before God, and knows that he does not deserve God’s mercy and rescue.  But in the same confession, David knows that his only hope is in the Lord, the only One who can forgive his sin and restore him to righteousness so he can serve the Lord again.

In verses 5 – 6, David quiets his soul and waits on the Lord.  David puts his hope in the Lord, not an empty “I hope it doesn’t rain today” hope, but his full trust that God is sovereign and will keep His promises to rescue those who call out to Him.  David waits expectantly, as the watchmen on the city walls look forward to the rising of the sun each morning.  Just as David cannot will the sun to come up each morning, David knows that he cannot will God to show up and rescue him.  But David can, and does, rest in God’s promises to watch over him and come to his aid as God had fulfilled His promises to his ancestors and to him many times before.

Notice that David uses the setting of the night to describe his current situation.  Have you ever been up with a sick child or sat beside a gravely ill loved one in the hospital as the night passed?  Seconds seem like minutes, minutes seem like hours, and hours seem like days, don’t they?  16th-century mystic St. John of the Cross wrote an untitled poem that has become known as “The Dark Night of the Soul”, where he describes the movement from sinfulness to union with the Lord.  It is this same passing of time that David refers to, knowing that God will come in His time, just as the sun rises in the east each morning.

So what is David’s conclusion?  How does he end this psalm?

King David, in his quiet confidence and reliance on God, tells all his weary subjects to put their hope and trust in the Lord, to confess their sins before the Lord, and God will rescue them from their sins and provide full redemption and restoration of their relationship to Himself.  God loves Israel, and will restore them to fellowship with Himself when they come humbly before Him and repent.  God is not looking for acts of piety, for sacrifices and money donated and social justice for the downtrodden.  Those are all good things, but God is concerned about the inner life of David and the Israelites, about their desire to be in a restored relationship with Him as their one and only God.  Only when the inner life is ordered and set right before God do any of the outward actions count as righteousness before the Lord.

What was true for King David and ancient Israel is true for us as well.  May we recognize when we are drowning in our own self-sufficiency, when we need to confess our sins and admit that we cannot save ourselves.

May we cry out to the Lord and put our hope in Him alone – not in our own power, not in our own resources, not in government, not in science, or medicine, or any other human endeavor, but in God alone.  There is nothing wrong with all those other things, but they all take a back seat to our trust and hope in the Lord and in His promises, and being rightly related to Him first and foremost.

May we then wait patiently for Him, as we wait for and trust in the Lord to bring the sunrise each morning.

Blessings,

~kevin

Psalm 131

Psalm 131

A song of ascents. Of David.

My heart is not proud, Lord,
    my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
    or things too wonderful for me.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
    I am like a weaned child with its mother;
    like a weaned child I am content.

Israel, put your hope in the Lord
    both now and forevermore.
(Psalm 131:1-3 NIV)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the prince of preachers, said of this psalm, “It is one of the shortest Psalms to read, but one of the longest to learn.” [C. H. Spurgeon, The Treasury of David, 3 vols. (reprint, Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, n.d.), 3/2:136.]

In this psalm, David focuses on contentment and security and abiding in relationship with the Lord.  As we look at verse 1, we see David humbly coming before the Lord, having already confessed his sin, repented, and found forgiveness in Psalm 130.

So what did David repent of?  Verse 1 gives us his list:

  • Pride
  • Envy
  • Self-righteous judgment of others
  • Unbridled ambition
  • Managing others for the sole purpose of self-promotion and achievement

George Washington Carver, the great scientist and researcher, told a similar story of his humbling and life calling before the Lord:

One day I went into my laboratory and said, “Dear Mr. Creator, please tell me what the universe was made for.” The Great Creator answered, “You want to know too much for that little mind of yours. Ask something more your size, little man.” Then I asked, “Please, Mr. Creator, tell me what man was made for.” Again the Great Creator replied, “You are still asking too much.” So then I asked, “Please, Mr. Creator, will you tell me why the peanut was made?” “That’s better,” God answered, “what do you want to know about the peanut?” “
(William Federer, George Washington Carver: His Life and Faith in his Own Words, (St. Louis, MO: Amerisearch, 2002). p. 35.)

So what propels us forward?  Is our purpose to honor God and His calling, or to selfishly seek our own fame and fortune and power?  Why do we do what we do?  What is our inner motivation?

Please note that David’s comments do not give us the freedom to do nothing and depend on others, nor do his comments allow us to run away from our problems, either physically or mentally or through self-medicating addictions like drugs, alcohol, work, pornography, or co-dependent human relationships.

In verse 2, David compares his contentment to that of a weaned child leaning against its mother.  Note that this contentment is learned and not instantaneous.  David says that he had calmed and quieted himself – he was no longer anxious and restless and demanding.

When a child is still on a milk diet, nursing from its mother, the child runs on instinct and self-seeking fulfillment.  When babies are hungry, they get fussy and cry and have a fit until their needs are met.  And newborns quickly learn where that nourishment comes from if they are being nursed by their mothers.  If the child is hungry, it begins rooting around and clamoring for nourishment from its mother’s breasts.

When the weaning process takes place, the child’s world is turned upside down.  The child’s source of nourishment changes from its mother’s breast to its mother’s hand.  The child cries, lifts up outstretched arms to its mother, and feels betrayed and denied.  And yet the mother knows that this is in the best interests of the child.

As we noted above, contentment is learned and not instantaneous.  We should also note that contentment is also learned and formed in a relationship.  The child has moved from nutritional dependence on its mother to relationship with its mother.  The child is at peace with simply sitting and resting beside its mother, content in knowing that its mother’s love and provision is sufficient to meet all its needs.

And how David’s description of a child with its mother so aptly pictures our relationship with the Lord as we grow and mature in our walk with Christ.  Our relationship with the Lord changes as we mature in Christ.  We no longer demand that God meet our needs, what we want from God.  We are now simply content to be with God, fully trusting that He knows our needs and loves us and will provide for us.

David concludes the psalm by instructing Israel to likewise put their trust and hope (dependence) on the Lord, both currently and forevermore (the unforeseeable future).  David knew the history of the Jewish people, how they had been dependent on Moses rather than God; David knew that he wanted to point the Israelites to the Lord as their great King who would be their provider and protector long after he was gone.

May we take David’s words to heart:

  • Confessing our pride before the Lord and seeking forgiveness
  • Asking the Lord to teach us contentment and dependence on Him
  • Praising the Lord for His protection and provision He gives now and forever
  • Pointing others to His sufficiency and love, not trying to be “god” to them

May this old hymn be your mindset and prayer today:

Be Still My Soul, sung by the group Selah

Blessings,

~kevin

Psalm 26

Psalm 26

Of David.

Vindicate me, Lord,
    for I have led a blameless life;
I have trusted in the Lord
    and have not faltered.
Test me, Lord, and try me,
    examine my heart and my mind;
for I have always been mindful of your unfailing love
    and have lived in reliance on your faithfulness.

I do not sit with the deceitful,
    nor do I associate with hypocrites.
I abhor the assembly of evildoers
    and refuse to sit with the wicked.
I wash my hands in innocence,
    and go about your altar, Lord,
proclaiming aloud your praise
    and telling of all your wonderful deeds.

Lord, I love the house where you live,
    the place where your glory dwells.
Do not take away my soul along with sinners,
    my life with those who are bloodthirsty,
10 in whose hands are wicked schemes,
    whose right hands are full of bribes.
11 I lead a blameless life;
    deliver me and be merciful to me.

12 My feet stand on level ground;
    in the great congregation I will praise the Lord.
(Psalm 26:1-12 NIV)

As we read today’s psalm, we see David in some kind of distress, requesting God’s protection.  Historians can cite many such distressing occasions in David’s life, but none specifically to this particular psalm.

David begins by asking for God’s protection (v. 1).  David is more concerned about God’s reputation in all the accusations swirling around than his own.  David wants to be sure that he has not done anything to cause others to think less of the Lord.

In verses 2 – 3, we see that David was not self-righteously proclaiming his integrity in verse 1 because David asks the Lord to search his heart and mind for any unconfessed sin.  If the Lord points something out to David, he will confess the sin and deal with it.

David recounts his clear choices to live a life of integrity and avoid entanglement in those who make sinful choices (vv. 4-5).  David does not want to be associated with evildoers and those who have a wicked heart bent on doing what God has clearly said is sinful behavior.  David is not judging them; however, David is clearly making his choice to honor and obey God and not participate in sinful activities.

David does not claim to be perfect; he is clearly not sinless, but he is reconciled to God and stands innocent before the Almighty.  We see David needing to wash his hands (David recognizing and confessing and repenting of his sin, and God’s power to remove his sin).  But once David has confessed, repented, and been cleansed of his sin, he is now fit for service in the Lord’s house (vv. 6-7).

David loves being in God’s presence, abiding in God’s love like soaking in the sunshine on a warm spring day.  And David feels closest to God in God’s house, the tabernacle, where God’s glory resides among His people (v. 8).

David pleads with God to not be swept away when God purges the evildoers from the land.  David knows that the pull of sin is strong, and it would be easy to give in to the “easy life” and all its selfish pleasures rather than walk with God in humility and obedience (vv. 9-11).

But David chooses to walk with the Lord, to be counted among the faithful spending his time praising the Lord in God’s house.  David is resting in the Presence and protection of the Lord with others of like mind and heart.

May we have David’s same attitude of abiding in God’s Presence, protection, and love for us, choosing to shun evil and walk with integrity.

May we invite the Lord to examine our hearts and minds and confess and repent of any sins the Lord points out so we are fit for His service, to be used by God for His glory.

This is the day the Lord has made – let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Blessings,

~kevin