December 23, 2015.
Daily Reading: Psalm 139-141.
Background: Psalm 136-138.
Concepts and Connections.
God’s intimate knowledge of man: This psalm, attributed to David, is one that is fairly popular. It is a beautiful psalm that speaks to the knowledge of God and his intimate relationship with man. If anyone ever wondered if the God of the Bible is a personal God, this psalm should be one of the first places to look. The psalmist speaks to God, knowing that He had searched him and known him. He knows everything about the psalmist, from when he sits down to when he gets up, discerning his thoughts from afar. God knows the psalmist’s words even before he speaks them, and He is acquainted with all His ways. The psalmist calls this wonderful and high knowledge, even beyond his full comprehension. There is nowhere he can go to hide from the presence of His Spirit, though men have tried. From the height of heaven to the depths of the sea, God is there. Even darkness cannot have any feat over the Lord, for it is as light when with the Lord. The Lord formed the psalmist from day one, while he was yet in his mother’s womb, and the psalmist praises the Lord for it. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. Our days are written in His book. The psalmist then comments on the precious thoughts of God, their vastness and how they are innumerable. He then calls for God to slay the wicked and speak against those with malicious intent. He hates those who hate the Lord, counting them as enemies. In the final stanza, the psalmist calls God to search his heart and his thoughts to see if there any wicked way in him, and to lead him into the way everlasting. This is a very bold and courageous request when the context is taken into consideration, as the psalmist has spent the entire psalm speaking to the complete intimate knowledge and power of the Lord. The psalmist is fully aware of the knowledge of the Lord, but he requests him to search his heart regardless, putting his faith and trust in the Lord. May we ever seek to have this relationship with our Lord.
Protection and deliverance: This psalm, again attributed to David, is a prayer to the Lord for deliverance from the evil men that surround the psalmist. He asks the Lord to protect him against violent men who plan evil in their heart and constantly start wars. Paul quotes part of verse 3 in Romans 3:13 as he is talking about the wickedness of mankind. This psalm prays for deliverance constantly, establishing the Lord as his God and putting his faith and trust in Him to deliver him. The Lord was his strength of salvation and protection in the day of battle. He prays for the Lord to bring ruin on those who work evil. In the end, the psalmist tells of his faith in the Lord, knowing that He will hear the words of the afflicted and bring justice to the needy. The upright will dwell in His presence.
Guidance from the Lord: Attributed to David, this psalm is a plea of guidance from the Lord by the psalmist, calling on His name. He asks the Lord to recognize his prayer and call to Him. Then he asks the Lord to guard him from evil, keeping watch over him and not letting his heart be inclined to evil. He prays that he might not be enticed by the delicacies of the wicked. It is important to see here that we should have a prayer on our lips that the Lord guide us and protect us from committing sin by transgressing His ways. The psalmists recognizes that rebuke from a righteous man is precious and valuable, and he prays continually against the evil deeds of the wicked. Though he may be persecuted and afflicted in his path of righteousness, he sets his eyes on the Lord, seeking refuge in Him. He prays that he is guided away from the trap that was laid for him by evil doers, and that rather they would fall into their own trap while he passed safely by. May the Lord ever lead us away from temptation and sin.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Song of Songs 7-8.
May the Lord be your strength.