October 22 2022
Today, Saturday October 22
Praise In Times of Trouble
“I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works. I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High. …. The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, A refuge in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; For You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.”
I want to thank everyone for your special prayers for my grandson Luke these past couple of days. As of this morning he is still in the NIC unit at the Roanoke hospital but if everything continues to check out ok, he should be able to go home again by this evening. It appears that there was an oxygen issue and that has been corrected and he is doing great! I had the wonderful privilege of holding him close for a few minutes yesterday and praying over him just before we left to come back to Sneads Ferry. He was very alert and responsive! Thank you, thank you, over and over again, for all your prayers and concerns!
I have said for years that my favorite verse or chapter in the Bible is the one I’m studying at the moment. Well, today my favorite one is Psalm 9! The more I read and think about this Psalm, the more I love it and enjoy it! David starts Psalm 9 with a shout of praise, and it is from his “whole heart”. David is surrounded by his enemies who are seeking to destroy him but instead of focusing on them and their evil intentions, he is looking up to his great God and “all of His marvelous works.”
David’s aim was to honor the Lord, not to glorify himself. His joy was in the Lord, not just in the great victory that He had been given (Phil. 4:4), and he wanted to tell everybody about God's wonderful works. Psalm 9:14: “That I may tell of all Your praise In the gates of the daughter of Zion. I will rejoice in Your salvation.” You find David doing this often in other Psalms that he wrote: Psalm 103:1-2, 117:1, and 138:1. We are encouraged to do the same in the New Testament: 1 Peter 2:9, and Ephesians 2:7.
A couple of times David mentions the “Name” of God in verses 2 and 10. In verse 2, David calls God by His name, "God Most High", which is El Elyon in the Hebrew language. You also see this name in Psalm 7:8, 10, 17; 18:13; 21:7. This was the name that Abraham honored after God gave him victory over the kings (Gen. 14). David knows that his victory over his enemies is because his God is higher than any other god, or anyone else for that matter!
You can help but notice the repeated phrase, "You have", in verses 4-6. “For You have maintained my right and my cause….”. “You have rebuked the nations, You have destroyed the wicked; You have blotted out their name forever and ever.” “You have destroyed cities…”. God turned the enemy back, and in their retreat, they stumbled and perished before the Lord. Why did the Lord do this? To maintain the right of David to be king of Israel and accomplish God's purposes in this world.
David recognized that God is the refuge for His people and that He will not forsake them (vv. 9-10). The first word means "a high safe place" and the second "a stronghold." During his years of exile, David found the wilderness strongholds to be places of safety, but he knew that the Lord was the safest refuge (46:1). The phrase "times of trouble" means literally "times of extremity". David frequently wrote about this “time of trouble” in other Psalms. (Read Psalm 10:1; 27:5; 37:39; 41:1; 73:5; 107:6, 13, 19, 26, 28).
Throughout this Psalm, David praises the Lord for His faithfulness in caring for His sheep. David’s focus centers on the people of the land, whom he calls the oppressed (v. 9), the humble ("afflicted" v. 12), and the needy and the poor (v. 18). These are the faithful worshipers of the Lord who have been persecuted, abused, and exploited by local rulers for being true to the Lord. For other assurances that God cares for you read Psalm 10:17; 25:16; 40:17; and 102:1. You can also see this in Zephaniah 2:3 and 3:12-13 and be confident that the Lord always hears the prayers of the humble.
I trust you will fall in love with this Psalm and in your times of trouble you will find solace here!