been afraid for my life by following Christ.
I mean, I look back to all the tense situations I’ve been in—even heated
ones and yet, I never thought my life was about to taken from me. Not so for David. David understood what it feels like to run
for his life and his only “crime” was being God’s anointed. He wrote this Psalm after one of the many
attempts Saul made on his life (1 Samuel 19).
In Psalm 59,
another imprecatory Psalm (see note on Psalm 58),
David calls out to the Lord for divine protection.
He prays, “1 Deliver
me from my enemies, O God; be my fortress against those who are attacking me.
2Deliver me from evildoers and save me from those who are after
my blood.” These bloodthirsty people wanted to kill him. They waited for him and made plans against
him—not because of anything he had done wrong but simply because of their own
jealousy (verse 3-4). Furthermore, they
scoff against the word of the Lord and think their evil deeds will never be
punished by anyone (verses 6-7). When
David calls for the Lord to have “no mercy to wicked traitors” (verse
5), remember two things:
1. This is the cry of someone who is afraid and
is trying to cast his anxiety on the Lord and had been betrayed by people who
were supposed to be his friends.
2. This is the anointed king of Israel. To stand against him was to stand against the
will of God. This isn’t just some random
person; David KNEW who he was in the Lord.
must be read a unit. Look at this:
9 You are my strength, I watch for you; you, God, are my
fortress, 10my God on whom I can rely. God will go before me and will let me gloat
over those who slander me.
11 But do not kill them, Lord our shield, or my people
will forget. In your might uproot them and bring them down.
12 For the sins of their mouths, for the words of their lips,
let them be caught in their pride. For the curses and lies they utter, 13consume
them in your wrath, consume them till they are no more. Then it will be known to the ends of the earth
that God rules over Jacob.
David, as the
anointed king of Israel, had the right to kill them for their betrayal. As magistrate and ruler he had the right but
instead, he puts it in the Lord’s hands.
Instead, David wants an example to the people of God. “Whoever sows injustice reaps calamity,”
instructs us, “and
the rod they wield in fury will be broken.”
Even when David would look out and see them lurking in
wait for him, David worshipped the Lord saying “You
are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble”.
You might not be facing a physical threat to your life
(but maybe you are!), but maybe you can still identify with these
feelings. I can tell you from
experience, the same God that protected David is the same God who hears our
cries in panic. He is still our
strength. We can sing praises to Him
because He is our fortress—our stronghold, our safe place. And we can rely on Him. Our Lord is our protection.