Psalm 56 today. David has been seized by the Philistines. Saul is still hunting him to kill him. With everything seemingly crashing in on him, here is what David prays: -Vs 1: “O God, have mercy on me.” His first place is inward. As is so often the case when we’re overwhelmed with problems, we need first to ask, “What did I do wrong, Lord? Is there anything in me that has caused this? If so, please have mercy on me.” David, a man after God’s heart, asked first for God’s mercy on himself.
-Vss 2, 5, 6: You see some more reasons why David’s heart was hurting. They not only attacked David but they slandered him constantly. They twisted what he said. They plotted to harm him. They spied his every step, eager to kill him.
-Vss 3,4: These verses give us insight into how David handled this inward pain. He first made a faith declaration: “When I am afraid, I will trust in you.” Try this today. Just say it over and over again: “When I am afraid, I will trust in you.” David declared his child-like faith to trust God no matter what. Next, he praised God’s word. There must have been some written word for David to read. Since he believed in God’s word, when he read it, he could say, “I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? Third, he came to the important realization that as hard and painful this world is, it’s not all there is: “What can mere mortals do to me,” David asked. The worst they can do is kill the body but they can’t capture the soul. The eternal soul is immune to earthly attacks!’’-
Vs 8: What an incredible verse this is. Look at these two thoughts:
- “You keep track of all my sorrows.”
- “You have collected all my tears in your bottle...you’ve recorded each one in your book”
For every person who has ever been hurt, cried a few tears, God knows each one. Each tear has been collected in God’s bottle. He is very aware of your pain and sorrow.
Vs 9: Because of God’s care, he knew he could call upon him and his enemies would retreat. Then David makes another incredible faith declaration: “This I know: God is on my side!” God is on the side of the poor, hurting and needy. He is on the side of the unrighteous, those who have been treated unjustly!
VSs 10,11: David repeats his trust in God and his word, therefore, “What can mere mortals do to me?”
Vss 12,13: Final statements of faith, a sacrifice of thanks by David. BTW, what does it mean to offer a “sacrifice of thanks” to God? Why is it a sacrifice? I would guess because he didn’t feel it! It wasn’t natural. He was overwhelmed by enemies. There seemed humanly to be much hope. The sacrifice was he thanked God anyway. He didn’t look at his circumstances but he looked to God. He didn’t look to his feelings but he looked to his God. “So now I can walk in your presence, O God, in your life-giving light.” That was David’s faith. That was his belief!
I pray it’s yours too, today.