Psalm 27 (NET) reads:
The LORD delivers and vindicates me!
I fear no one!
The LORD protects my life!
I am afraid of no one!
2 When evil men attack me
to devour my flesh,
when my adversaries and enemies attack me,
they stumble and fall.
3 Even when an army is deployed against me,
I do not fear.
Even when war is imminent,
I remain confident.
4 I have asked the LORD for one thing--
this is what I desire!
I want to live in the LORD's house all the days of my life,
so I can gaze at the splendor of the LORD
and contemplate in his temple.
5 He will surely give me shelter in the day of danger;
he will hide me in his home;
he will place me on an inaccessible rocky summit.
6 Now I will triumph
over my enemies who surround me!
I will offer sacrifices in his dwelling place and shout for joy!
I will sing praises to the LORD!
7 Hear me, O LORD, when I cry out!
Have mercy on me and answer me!
8 My heart tells me to pray to you,
and I do pray to you, O LORD.
9 Do not reject me!
Do not push your servant away in anger!
You are my deliverer!
Do not forsake or abandon me,
O God who vindicates me!
10 Even if my father and mother abandoned me,
the LORD would take me in.
11 Teach me how you want me to live;
lead me along a level path because of those who wait to ambush me!
12 Do not turn me over to my enemies,
for false witnesses who want to destroy me testify against me.
13 Where would I be if I did not believe I would experience
the LORD's favor in the land of the living?
14 Rely on the LORD!
Be strong and confident!
Rely on the LORD!
Psalm 27 is another great example of David expressing his confidence in YHWH's ability to protect him. Although the immediate context may have been a conspiracy of false witnesses (v. 12), David extends his confidence even to times of violence and war (vv. 2–3).
The basis of David's confidence is YHWH's willingness to take him under His arms. He writes, "Even if my father and mother abandoned me, the LORD would take me in" (v. 10). David is confident that YHWH's faithfulness means protection from enemies (v. 5).
In response to YHWH's protection, David swears that he will offer sacrifices and sing songs of praise (v. 6). He also asks YHWH, "Teach me how you want me to live; lead me along a level path because of those who wait to ambush me!" (v. 11) David recognizes that the way of the Lord is both wisdom and covenant responsibility.
The verses that stuck out to me today are the last ones. David asks, "Where would I be if I did not believe I would experience the LORD's favor in the land of the living?" (v. 12)
This is a great and terrible question. As followers of Jesus, we recognize that YHWH is in supreme control of the universe. No one can thwart His will. No one can harm whom He protects. No one can protect whom He is against. Where would we be if we did not think that YHWH was for us?
I am reminded of something Alistair Begg said in chapel during my freshman year of college, "I am not tossed about on the waves of chance." Where would I be if I did not believe this?
Finally, in verse 13, David exclaims, "Rely on the LORD! Be strong and confident! Rely on the LORD!" Is he talking to himself or to others? Perhaps both.
"Father, it is easy to forget about Your control over everything that happens. It is easy to fear. It is easy to worry. It is easy to despair. Father, we confess Your greatness. We confess Your power and Your might. No one can stop You. No one can control You. No one can slow you down. And Father we thank you for your faithfulness and Your goodness. We thank you that You hear our prayers and that you wish our welfare. We confess our trust and reliance on You. Amen."
Prayer For The Third Sunday Of Advent - Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedil...
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