O Lord, how many are my foes!
Many are rising against me;
2 many are saying of my soul,
“There is no salvation for him in God.” Selah
3 But you, O Lord, are a shield about me,
my glory, and the lifter of my head.
4 I cried aloud to the Lord,
and he answered me from his holy hill. Selah
5 I lay down and slept;
I woke again, for the Lord sustained me.
6 I will not be afraid of many thousands of people
who have set themselves against me all around.
7 Arise, O Lord!
Save me, O my God!
For you strike all my enemies on the cheek;
you break the teeth of the wicked.
8 Salvation belongs to the Lord;
your blessing be on your people! Selah
For our church:
Please pray that the members of our church would experience a deep confidence in the Lord such that it would be manifested in both their ability to find rest and sustenance in him and a joyful, determined resignation to his will.
Our teaching moment:
David had been cast out of his own city by his betraying son Absalom. (see 2 Samuel 15) After hearing that he had lost the hearts, the goodwill, and the allegiance, of the men of Israel, he instructed his family and close servants, “Arise, and let us flee…” (2 Samuel 15:14) As David contemplated the treachery of Absalom and the fickleness of some of Jerusalem’s inhabitants, his own leading men and trusted servants longed for retribution. When they came across Shimei, a member of the house of Saul, who was cursing and railing against David, this longing for blood revealed itself, “Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over and take off his head.” (2 Samuel 16:9) A portion of David’s response is sufficient to illustrate his marvelous resignation to the Lord, “And David said to Abishai and to all his servants, “Behold, my own son seeks my life; how much more now may this Benjaminite! Leave him alone, and let him curse, for the Lord has told him to. It may be that the Lord will look on the wrong done to me, and that the Lord will repay me with good for his cursing today.” (2 Samuel 16:11-12) In Psalm 3, David calls out to the Lord, “Arise, O Lord! Save me, O my God!” David’s resignation to the Lord in circumstances that were difficult, trying, and perhaps, easily remedied by readily available means (the sword of Abishai) enabled him with integrity to wait and call out to the Lord for his answer. May we follow in David’s footsteps today and trust him with all our Shimeis.
A prayer from the past:
“Lord, your judgments are like the great deep. Your footsteps are not known. Just and holy are you, O King of saints!
In the season of night, let me arise and give you thanks. Let my speech be of your lovingkindness and tender mercies, all day long.
May it be my sleep, my food, and my drink, to do the will of my Heavenly Father.
You who holds the wind in your fists, and the waters in the palms of your hands, accept our thanks for your past mercies. Set apart our travels, and if it is best, carry us with speed to where we should go. Send me wherever and whenever it seems good to your divine majesty.
Raise my heart and make your power known in the hearts of your people. Add daily to your church those who will be saved. They are noted in your book; let them also be written on my heart.
And now, let your servants depart in peace, for our eyes have seen and our hearts have felt your salvation.
Even so come Lord Jesus, come quickly. Amen and amen.”
[George Whitefield (1714-1770), cited in Elmer, Piercing Heaven, 54-55.]