Today: [Psalm Fifty-Six] Experience the Weightiness of God’s Promise! In this chapter David is taken captive by the Philistines. As was his custom David composes a song! Can you imagine being a prisoner of war, facing torture and execution and your response is “I think I will write a song!” David’s response under fire always brought the faithfulness of God online to deliver him. In this psalm we see several things that David did under pressure that we can emulate. If we do with our faith what David did with His faith we will experience the same results.
[Psa 56:1-13 KJV] 1 [[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. 2 Mine enemies would daily swallow [me] up: for [they be] many that fight against me, O thou most High. 3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. 4 In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me. 5 Every day they wrest my words: all their thoughts [are] against me for evil. 6 They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul. 7 Shall they escape by iniquity? in [thine] anger cast down the people, O God. 8 Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: [are they] not in thy book? 9 When I cry [unto thee], then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God [is] for me. 10 In God will I praise [his] word: in the LORD will I praise [his] word. 11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me. 12 Thy vows [are] upon me, O God: I will render praises unto thee. 13 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?
David was a man constantly confronted by adversity and assault from those around him. From the day that Samuel first anointed him king until the end of his life he was constantly under threat by enemies within and traitors without. Even his friends and his family alike constantly vied for position and advantage in his presence. On his deathbed he was dealing with problems and challenges to his legacy and the rebellion of his own sons against the plan of God for his life. Experiencing adversity is no sign that God is not with you. In fact Jesus stated the following:
Mark 10:29 And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, 30
But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.
If you aren’t being persecuted then you aren’t doing anything with the salvation that Jesus bought for you. Many times when we go through difficulties in life we beg the question “what did I do wrong?”. Jesus approached adversity and difficulty quite differently when he taught in Luke 6:26 to beware when all men speak well of you. There is no concord Paul taught between light and darkness. There is no fellowship, no common ground between Christ and Belial. If you want to identify Satan’s seat in your life identify were the resistance is coming from. That which is “adverse” is that which originates from the “adversary”.
When David encountered adversity and conflict his first response in verse 1 of our chapter was to appeal to God’s mercy. He didn’t ask for what he deserved because he knew what he was made of. He realized that outside of God’s mercy there is little suffering that cannot be construed as only getting what one deserves. When you are under pressure and being oppressed by the enemy the most powerful prayer you can pray is for God’s mercy. When you appeal to God’s mercy and are prepared to give God’s mercy even to your enemies you will fast track yourself to the blessing and benefit of God – even the table that is spread in the presence of your enemies.
In verse 2 David refers to those that lie in wait for him. The marginal reading renders this as those that were watching for David and observing David from a distance. If you purpose in your life to live for Christ and to walk worthy of the vocation wherewith you are called you will be subject to the scrutiny of others. They will watch for your feet to stumble. They will wait holding their breath for a moment of vulnerability that they might justify their ungodly opinions of you. Refuse to give them the satisfaction of worrying about what they will do next.
In verse 3 we find after some years of experiencing the faithfulness of God under fire that David’s response under pressure is to put his trust in God. Notice he says “when I am afraid I will trust in thee…” What that tells you is that trust is more than emotional reliance. You may be struggling with a spirit of fear but that does not mean that trust in God is not present. It is the nature of your human vulnerability to fear and be overly concerned with what is happening around. Trust in God arises not out of your emotions but out of your will – from a choice to say even though you are struggling with intimidation your choice is to trust and rely on God. This is the heart response that pleases the Father’s heart and fast-tracks you through the conflict at hand.
Verse 4 also tells us that David’s trust in God was translated into action. This is why in this case when David was taken in Gath by the Philistines and other times in his life that he would pause and compose a song. God gives to us a new song sometimes in the most inconvenient seasons. When you are pressed and about to panic let your response be the one that came out of David – praise and worship before the Lord. Praise Him in advance even before you see deliverance. Dance in advance. Rejoice pre-emptively because you know that in the situation at hand God is going to make Himself known and you will come out intact and whole with your foot in the neck of your enemy.
In verses 5-6 we find that even though David was trusting in God he still took the time to inventory for God in his prayers what was happening. It is true that God knows what you are facing but it is His will and His way that you report to Him as though He had no knowledge of things at all. The lament psalms of David were not intended to record David’s grumbling and complaint. His psalms were written from an expectation of trust in God. He laid his situation out of the Father and fully expected for things to be taken in hand. Let David’s prayer life and devotional life be mirrored in your own. Cry out for God’s mercy. Declare your trust in His hand of deliverance. Review before Him what the enemy is doing. Expect change to come. Know that God will be faithful.
In verse 9 David declares ahead of time what he knows is going to take place. He will cry unto God and his enemies will be turned back. Do you see how this will benefit you? We ask many times “where is God in all of this?” We assume that because God knows what is going on without our telling Him that He should be acting in our behalf. You have to know that you have control over when the hand of God will move in your defense. Like David learn the lesson that when you cry out to God the next thing that happens is God will deliver. You may point to experiences in your past where it didn’t seem to turn out that way but make up your mind – where does the authority in your life lay? In your past experience or in what the testimony of God’s word says?
In verse 10 David speaks of “praising” the word of God. What does the word praise mean? It means to magnify. When you put your attention on something it tends to fill your field of vision. If you constantly look at the problem the problem will get bigger and consume the landscape of your life. You won’t be able to see over it or around it. Make a decision not to magnify the problem but to magnify your trust in God and your confidence in God. The word of God says you are destined for life and life more abundantly because of who Jesus is on the inside of you. Put your attention there. You are where your attention takes you. Set your affections and attenuate your emotions on the faithfulness of God and the faithfulness of God will find you and define and set the parameters for what happens next.
In verse 11 David settles the matter of where he places his trust. In verse 3 he initiated his trust in God and in verse 11 he establishes his trust in God. Make up your mind. Refuse to vacillate or equivocate in the area of your confidence in the Father to act in your behalf. There may be things in the realm of possibility that man can do to you in coming against you. Learn to trust in God even though the hand of man has yet to be restrained against you. The end result will be deliverance and overcoming in every situation. Remember that the half has not be told. The end of the matter is not yet come. While there is breath there is life and hope. God will come through for you.
In verse 12 David expresses the fact that the vows of God or the promises of God are weighing more heavily on his heart than the threats of the enemy. You may be under pressure from without but allow the weight of God’s promise make more of an impression upon you inwardly than the oppression of the enemy. I had a dear friend whose daily confession was “greater is the pressure of God on the inside flowing out of my life than the pressure of the enemy on the outside attempting to flow into my life…” If you are going to be burdened down – be burdened down by the weightiness of God’s glory over you. Experience the weightiness of God to bless and benefit you and the false burden of the enemy will be dissipated and removed from your life.
Finally in verse 13 David makes a proactive declaration. He isn’t delivered yet but he makes the decree. He declares “past tense” that God has delivered us. This type of prayer is very powerful. It is being future tense oriented. It is refusing to allow what the enemy is doing to be a predictor of what happens next. You are coming out of the battle. You will be intact and in a place of blessing. The plan of the enemy will come to nothing and your life will be spared, saved, blessed and benefited in extreme measure!
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