I see this Psalm in the light of the end time we live in. The end is surely very close, as all the world turns black with sin, the colour of necrosis, with a stench of human and satanic wickedness.
As the end comes, so enemies consolidate and join forces, to come against God and us with great fury. But, God is ready to send His punishments. Many enemies now arise, and more are to come, but some enemies will be put to shame before the end.
In particular I think of homosexuality and its enslaved adherents, whose end will come swifter, because they ignored the very plain punishment of God in the diseases they carry and spread. Many of them have already died, but the remainder scorn God and continue to sin, inviting more disease and death. It is possible that God will visit them with an even hotter wrath in the very near future.
In every Psalm we see the demand for us to live righteously. Do not put it to one side – it is both a warning and an overture to do what is right. Live in God’s name and on His path, and He will give you whatever you legitimately ask for! It is part of your inheritance in Christ!
The king shall joy in thy strength, O LORD; and in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!
Thou hast given him his heart's desire, and hast not withholden the request of his lips. Selah.
I write this study at a time when oppression of the soul almost removed all joy. It has come about because I have opposed some of the most wicked people on earth. Though I stood strong for three decades against this enemy, it has taken its toll, so now I try to rest from the battle.
Only those who enter battle and experience the actual hatred and injuries of the enemy can possibly understand what it is like. That is how I understand why David wrote as he did. He was no armchair critic or aspirational writer! He knew what he spoke of! So, coming to this Psalm has revitalised me. My soul will recover as God moves within to console and strengthen. And this is how we ought to read such a Psalm. Nothing in scripture is just an archive, a record of things past! It is ALL relevant and applicable to our everyday lives.
This is another musical poem handed to the Temple’s chief musician, to be sung and played before the congregation. “The king” – David – says he is full of joy because of the power of Jehovah, a power that is passed down to David, who rejoices because Jehovah saved him from his enemies.
Today, few Christians really understand who their enemies are, or how wicked they are. Christian witness has been watered-down, and enemies given a place of pride in the nation, even in our churches. Instead of fighting the enemy most believers sit back and accept what the enemy is doing. Whilst we ought to love our enemy, it does not mean we must treat them with fondness, but only with the most basic of agape - regard for persons as created beings. Too often, we give enemies a position of respect they should not have… there is no way we can give them respect, when what they say and do acts directly against God.
David’s Psalm is a call for us to rise above the effects evil men can have on our constitution, thoughts and responses, no matter how dire the effects can be. God gave David “his heart’s desire” and never refused to answer his requests. What a testimony! Can we honestly say God has given us our heart’s desire and has never refused what we pray for? It goes to show that to receive such a 100% response, David had to be righteous. He fell badly at one time, and suffered the earthly consequences, but the rest of his life made him the ‘apple’ of God’s eye. So, God gave him what he prayed for.
Is this open to us today? Of course it is. We rarely experience this kind of response because we tend not to live righteously! It is a warning to us to get our spiritual act together, and not to enjoy such a close relationship with the world. When we, too, live as David did, in complete harmony with God in righteousness, we can also say with him – Selah… so be it. These first two verses are powerful for David. He is rejoicing so much, he causes the music to stop temporarily, as if to savour the moment.
For thou preventest him with the blessings of goodness: thou settest a crown of pure gold on his head.
He asked life of thee, and thou gavest it him, even length of days for ever and ever.
His glory is great in thy salvation: honour and majesty hast thou laid upon him.
For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad with thy countenance.
For the king trusteth in the LORD, and through the mercy of the most High he shall not be moved.
This closeness with God has many benefits, some given by God as a reward, and others as a continual consequence of being righteous. In this verse, David says that God’s goodness to him “preventest him”. In modern language this means to stop or block. But, in the Hebrew it also means to meet, be in front of as in ‘going before’; it also means something similar to our modern word, ‘to forestall’.
In this verse, David is saying that by His goodness, God stops him from sinning, and goes before him in battle and in his walk in life. Not only does He walk with David and give him general good things, but He has given him wealth. Verse 3 says this came as a crown of pure gold. But, David’s real source of joy is not the physical crown he had as an emblem of his regal superiority and godliness, but the spiritual crown of being God’s child.
Verse 4 is as close to a New Testament claim to salvation as we can get. David “asked of thee, and thou gavest it him, even length of days for ever and ever.” That is, God not only gave David long years of rule and life on earth, but He also gave him eternal salvation. We know this because the word for ‘life’ is chay, which describes fresh flowing water, being alive. It is a symbol often used to speak of eternal life, and here it is further qualified by the words “for ever and ever”.
This is further reinforced by the root, chayah, meaning, amongst other things, to live forever. David asked, and God gave. What a straightforward transaction! Many of us today fail to see the transaction, because we are filled with earthly desires and woes. But, the same straightforward joy is available to all who are saved in Christ, if only we live righteously and trust implicitly. I ask – God gives! Simple but potent.
David then says that his own kingly glory is possible because of God’s protection and power. David had “honour and majesty” poured on him by God, for his righteousness. When we act properly before God, He gives us a dignity we do not deserve, and even honour. At no time do we deserve rewards, but God gives them to us anyway when we live as we ought, because He wishes to. We cannot demand it, for everything He gives us for our good is undeserved, and His prerogative only.
Recognising this grace and mercy coming from God, David said: “For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad with thy countenance.” God made David blessed, not David’s own prowess. Though the Middle East’s most powerful king, David recognised that his power was not due to his own strength, but to God’s. Indeed, God “laid upon him” his earthly wealth and power. It was God’s gift, not a right.
It was God Who “made him most blessed”. The mere smile of God lit up David’s life, making him “exceeding glad”. Note that God made David glad “for ever”, ‘ad, meaning past present and future, and eternity. So, this is another indication of David’s salvation of soul.
When we give glory to God for everything good, He rewards us with benefits and even greatness. He demands that we obey and dedicate ourselves to Him. In return He gives us what we need and what we legitimately desire. This coincides with the words of His Son, Jesus Christ, as in, say, Matthew 6:6, and 21:20-22. What glorious words come from David’s lips, and are then confirmed in the Temple, sung with a great crescendo to the congregation! Do you tell your sons and daughters, wives and husbands, mothers and fathers, cousins and friends, that God is responsible, and He alone, for any good in your life? Do you heap praise upon His name for showing you such mercy and grace? And do you love as you ought, righteously?
You WILL do these things if you truly have faith in God: “For the king trusteth in the LORD, and through the mercy of the most High he shall not be moved.” (Verse 7). At the beginning I said I was pressed down by the enemy… but I was not moved away from God; I trust Him in the deepest of woes. David trusted in the Lord, and so God showed him mercy (which is always undeserved). Because of this David “shall not be moved”. Not to move means to mowt – to stay firm no matter what, not to shake or slip, or be overthrown.
We can be suddenly set-upon and so temporarily lose our footing because of shock, but a firm stand is quickly restored if we look to God for our strength, which He WILL give. This is more than shouting to God for help whenever we are in danger or in trouble; it is to call on God during our very real life of righteousness. Do not insult God by suddenly calling upon Him for help, when you normally live without Him.
Thine hand shall find out all thine enemies: thy right hand shall find out those that hate thee.
Thou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger: the LORD shall swallow them up in his wrath, and the fire shall devour them.
Their fruit shalt thou destroy from the earth, and their seed from among the children of men.
For they intended evil against thee: they imagined a mischievous device, which they are not able to perform.
God knows those who hate Him. He knows who His enemies are. David confirms this fact, suggesting that no enemy can hide away from God, Who will deal them a blow of death in His own time. The statement also tells us that God knows in advance who His enemies are, and so He knows who our enemies are, too, for His enemies are also ours. They WILL be dealt with. As I write this section I must remind myself of this truth, so that I do not fall into despair. God is already there before me!
When God strikes down our/His enemy, they will not survive, but will burn in the flames of God’s holy wrath, which is always deserved and always perfect. God will consume them with a fire so hot that no man can exist in its flames. Our enemies today laugh in scorn, but they will die and be punished by Almighty God. Sometimes, He will punish them on earth, too, as He does with AIDS, for example.
Those who are spawned by our enemies, by their scorn or propaganda, will also be dealt with by God. They cannot claim ignorance. God will indeed “destroy (their fruit)… and their seed.” As I continue in this study I received an anger-making news item, about the USA ‘training’ its troops in Afghanistan to accept and join-with homosexuals. I am furious! But, God is already there before me. He knows of this wickedness and will deal it a killing blow, so that “their seed (more homosexuals) will be (destroyed) from among the children of men.”
Why? Because, their intention is pure evil against Christians and God. They have every desire to subvert and subdue us, and to get rid of us, cursing God on the way. They are malevolent and full of sin. They have been allowed to think up thousands of wicked ways to destroy us… but God will destroy them instead.
They “imagined a mischievous device”, ways to harm us and God. And governments allow them to do so. God WILL visit them in His wrath, so they will be unable to perform what they wish to do. Currently, they are getting away with it in human terms – but God is watching and will crush them at the appointed time. In the meantime many die as a punishment for their evil acts.
Therefore shalt thou make them turn their back, when thou shalt make ready thine arrows upon thy strings against the face of them.
Be thou exalted, LORD, in thine own strength: so will we sing and praise thy power.
God is poised ready to attack His, and our, enemies. He is turning them to face Him, so that He can unleash His arrows into their chests. Thus we know they will die with knowledge of what God demands, but remain defiant. In this day, as we face an awful, relentless and wicked enemy, I see this as a prophecy of what is to come soon. The enemy is flaunting his evils, pushing them upon us openly. God will not allow it to continue.
Included in this is the need for us to march onward against the foe, resisting their claims and telling the truth. As the resistance grows, God makes ready. Suddenly, His arrows will fly, darkening the sky with the means of death. God will rid us of the foul pestilence, and so we must live righteously before that.
“Be thou exalted, LORD, in thine own strength: so will we sing and praise thy power.” This is what we must do, before God comes to deal a death-blow to the enemy. We must praise His name before the enemy, and tell them what is to come; we must tell them of His power and punishment.
I sincerely see this happening in the near future, though many enemies will continue to arise, because it is prophesied; some enemies will be crushed before the end comes, proving the might of God and His demand to live pure, unadulterated lives.
© February 2011
Published on www.christiandoctrine.com
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