“Save me, O God, by Your name, and vindicate me by Your strength.”
This Psalm is a prayer set to music. In It, David is crying out to God to deliver him from those who are seeking to end his life. The title of the Psalm gives us insight into the situation he is facing.
‘A Contemplation of David when the Ziphites went and said to Saul, ‘Is David not hiding with us?’”
Because of the jealous rage of King Saul, David was forced to live in hiding. The Wilderness of Ziph provided a perfect hiding place for David and his men. The many caves made it difficult for anyone to pinpoint their whereabouts. That is, until the Ziphites, or inhabitants of that area alerted Saul to David’s location. When news reached David that King Saul knew where he was hiding, and that he was coming with an army to kill him, David’s reaction was to pray. He set his face toward heaven, sought God’s assistance and was delivered from his enemy. We discover in 1 Samuel 23 that God moved the Philistine army in order to deliver David. God is like that; since He is the King of kings, the universe is at His disposal. He will even move nations to deliver His people. When David prayed, God delivered.
Our reaction in times of difficulty, danger, fear or uncertainty, is not always faith-filled prayer. Instead, we are often filled with worry, fear and unbelief. Too many times, when we should be following the example of David and looking up, we find ourselves in a panic, perhaps even crippled with anxiety. How was it that in such grave danger, David was able to look to the Lord with confident prayer? Again, 1 Samuel 23 gives us the insight. Just prior to the Ziphites selling David out to Saul, we read,
1 Samuel 23:16-17 “Then Jonathan, Saul’s son, arose and went to David in the woods and strengthened his hand in God. And he said to him, ‘Do not fear, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you. You shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you. Even my father Saul knows that.’”
The conditions of life had greatly weakened David, until his friend came and strengthened his hands. Notice, David’s hands were strengthened when Jonathan simply shared the promises of the Word of God. This was not a pep talk, or a motivational speech. Jonathan was quoting to David what God had already promised, “You shall be king.” In our times of difficulty, faith-filled prayer is the answer. However, this kind of prayer stems from remembering the great and precious promises of God. Allow your faith to be built up for the challenges ahead, by reminding yourself of His wonderful promises.
- Read 1 Samuel 26 for background on the writing of this Psalm.
- David had the opportunity to destroy his enemy; did he?
- Within this psalm what is David’s attitude concerning those who are his enemies?
- Have you ever had opportunity to take vengeance, or to wrongfully take matters in to your own hand? If you are currently struggling with this pray that God will help you to trust the situation and those who are involved into His hands.
- Note verse 4. Compare this with John 14:16-18. Is this a real help?