“Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me.” God sent Israel into the land of Canaan as agents of conquest. But now, centuries after His revelation to Moses, David cried out to the Lord because the Philistines were seeking to destroy him. The “proud” stood against David, but the man who would be king put his trust in God.
David did not deny that he was afraid. In the midst of his fear, he found strength in God and in His Word. With confidence in his sovereign Lord, he knew that his enemies could not win the day.
Were David’s enemies dangerous? Yes, their thoughts were continuously against him. They stirred up trouble for him and looked for an opportunity to bring his life to an end. Yet David knew that the Lord would hold them accountable for their malice.
David also knew that the Lord was on his side. His God had tender regard for him. Though he was forced to wander among the Philistines, God was well aware of all his troubles and tears. The man whom God had chosen to replace Saul reminded himself again that he could rightly trust in the Lord and in His Word.
David looked forward to the day when he would be able to testify before his own people concerning the Lord’s faithful care. “I will render thank offerings to You.” He knew that the Lord would deliver him from the threat of death. He would “walk before God in the light of life.”
David would never be killed by his enemies, but one thousand years after David rested in the grave, the enemies of Jesus would seem to win the day. Jesus would suffer mortal wounds because of their violence. Nonetheless, like David, Jesus would “walk before God in the light of life.” Through the suffering of Jesus on the cross, sin and death would be utterly defeated. We who believe in the resurrection of Jesus should sing these great words of David with confidence: “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?”
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
Father God, You are gracious. We trust You. There is much danger everywhere, but You will protect us. You know about every enemy who stands against us, and every difficulty that will come before us. You are powerful to save in every situation, and You are with us.