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Psalm 27

Updated on May 22, 2009
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Rebecca Graf is a seasoned writer with nearly a decade of experience and degrees in accounting, history, and creative writing.

A Psalm of David

The Psalms are so beautiful. They are poetry and song lyrics that are come straight from the heart. That cannot be denied. The most famous of the authors is King David of Israel. He was a man who has done many of things we have all done and he expressed his feelings over each incident through song. The accomplished musician gave us words that we can take to heart and claim as our own.

Psalm 27 is a wonderful one that David wrote that talks of the help God gives us today and the hope He gives for tomorrow.

(1) The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?

Fear is a powerful thing. We’ve all experienced it and it can consume us. It makes our heart race to amazing speeds. It makes our breath quicken even to hyperventilation. It makes us sweat. Our bodies go through such chaos and stress when fear is upon us. We fear losing our jobs. We fear physical harm. We fear the unknown. We fear fear itself. But this verse points out that David saw the Lord as the ultimate protector. With Him in his corner, who would he fear? The Egyptians? No. His own family? No. David felt that nothing was powerful enough to conquer his God.

(2) When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall.

Notice here that David says “when”, not “if”. There is no question that at some time in your life you will be attacked physically, emotionally, or verbally. There will be people out to get you intentionally or not. In fact there are some people who would do anything to see others suffer. Here David acknowledges that. But he goes further. He tells what he knows will happen to them. They will attack. They will be vicious. They will fall. They will not be as successful as they hoped. Evil will not triumph in the end.

(3) Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.

David shows the ultimate in trust and faith in this verse. Armies can be powerful. Armies can be deadly. Imagine the countries of today pulling all their forces together and attacking one lone man. He would have no chance. Even if he pulled an army of his family and friends together, it would be hopeless. In the eyes of the world it cannot be done and the man should give up. David says otherwise. He says that even with everything against him he will not falter and give up. He is confident in the strength behind him.

(4) One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.

He could ask for riches, power, and popularity. But instead he asks to only look upon the Lord for all eternity. What a simple request. What an honor to God. But why that?

(5) For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.

David wants to just be in God’s presence because he knows his Lord’s strength. He realizes that when the day comes, God will not set on his throne ignoring the pleas for help. It might seem that way because we want action yesterday. But He does hear and He does respond. He doesn’t ignore His children. He physically, emotionally, and/or spiritually protects those of His. He gives them shelter to run to. He shows them the high ground to run to when the floods of attack come in. He does not abandon.

(6) Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the LORD.

He knows that when God runs in and saves him that he will be protected from the disaster awaiting his attackers. Therefore, he will worship the Lord and sing his music for Him.

(7) Hear my voice when I call, O LORD; be merciful to me and answer me.

Here David pleads with God to always remember him and answer him. He shows humility and honor to God by placing all power and control in His hands.

(8) My heart says of you, “See his face!” Your face, LORD, I will seek.

David says that his heart cries out for God. He decides to listen to the inner cries and look to God.

(9) Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior.

This is not a demand. It is a plea. It is begging God to not turn away or ignore the pleas. By pleading, David is once again acknowledging God’s power and position.

(10) Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.

Many of us have experienced rejection by loved ones. Some go as far as totally ignoring us and acting as though we were dead. It might be over something we have done that was minor or major. But whatever the reason, you will have been rejected. God doesn’t do that. That is one consolation that we all have. There is nothing that we can do that is so bad that He will abandon us. He will always be there for us. He will always be willing to hold us in His arms.

(11) Teach me your way, O LORD; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.

When we are humble enough to seek God’s direction, you will have an amazing journey. Ask Him for instruction. Ask Him for guidance. When we do that, He leads us on safe paths. When we reach out and take the wheel ourselves, we have a tendency to go into ravines and canyons. We don’t heed the warning signs. Let Him be in control and guide your vehicle of life.

(12) Do not turn me over to the desires of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence.

People can be creative and especially so with revenge. Here David pleads with God not to see it in his best interest to be handed over to his foes. He knows that many of them rising against him are for false reasons and are deadly.

(13) I am still confident in this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.

David knows that there is evil and violence in all the land. But he is confident that he will see goodness from God even through all that. He will see the silver lining on the cloud.

(14) Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.

David ends his song with words of wisdom for each of us. We need to wait on the Lord. We need to take in a deep breath and wait on His direction. That can be hard. I’m not going to mislead you there. But we need to do that if we want to stay safe. When we are wanting to get revenge, wait on God. When we want to put in our two-cents worth, wait on God. Be strong and wait on Him. He’s worth waiting for.


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    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 8 years ago from Chicago

      Wonderful, insightful, incisive exposition. Thank you very much. I was edified by it.