Prayer, Protection, Praise, and Posture

September 4, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Posted in Selected Psalms | 4 Comments
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David had fled to Gath, the Philistine home of his old nemesis, Goliath. There, they harassed and mocked him. They slandered him. They made threats against him.

[To the chief Musician upon Jonathelemrechokim, Michtam of David, when the Philistines took him in Gath.] Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me. Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High. What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.

Psalm 56:1-4

If David was going to praise God in these circumstances, even his praise would have to come from God. It is right for God to praise Himself.

David’s first prayer was: Keep me alive.

Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up…

Psalm 56:1

David’s second prayer was: Keep me upright.

Every day they wrest my words: all their thoughts are against me for evil. They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.

Psalm 56:5-6

David had a bull’s eye on his back. All Christians do. We are Satan’s primary targets. God wants us to stay upright, but we don’t get upright before God by getting on our feet. We get upright before God by getting on our faces.

Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?

Psalm 56:8

God numbers our hairs and our tears. He accurately knows everything we have been through.

Thy vows are upon me, O God: I will render praises unto thee.

Psalm 56:12

In prayer, it is okay to remind God of His Own promises – not because God forgets, but because it refocuses us on His covenant.

David’s third prayer was: Keep me praising You.

Thy vows are upon me, O God: I will render praises unto thee. For thou hast delivered my soul from death: wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?

Psalm 56:12-13

God answered David’s three prayers. He kept him alive. He kept him upright. And He kept him praising God. God did this by shining His light. Light is essential for life, for staying upright, and for praising God. God is the Father of Lights, and He is to be worshiped in spirit and in truth.

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