Jesus Creed

Jesus Creed


Our Common Prayerbook: Psalm 3

posted by Scot McKnight

Trust.jpgIt has been said often, and John Goldingay (Psalms, Vol. 1: Psalms 1-41
) says it here, “Most of Scripture speaks to us; the Psalms speak for us.” Psalm 3 [after the jump] speaks for our complaints to God that yield, somehow and sometime, to trust and praise. Surrounded by enemies, the psalmist (here said to be David) trusts God when taunted by enemies.

Humans sense at times that others don’t like them, and leaders can be driven to despair because they sense the opposition is so great. But David here is not talking about justifiable opposition; he’s concerned with unjustifiable opposition from enemies. Their opposition emerges as a claim about God: God will not deliver him [David] this time (3:2). Their accusations will lead most to wonder if God is not, in fact, with him/her/David. 
Perhaps his enemies think they will conquer and replace him as king. David, they are saying, has been abandoned by God. 
Prayer, so it seems to me as I read this Psalm, is about telling God what one is experiencing and talking through it with God. Prayer can begin with description of our condition, our problems, our issues — and God listens, and telling God what is going on can lead to trust.

3:1 Lord, how numerous are my enemies!

Many attack me.

3:2 Many say about me,

“God will not deliver him.” (Selah)

3:3 But you, Lord, are a shield that protects me;

you are my glory and the one who restores me.

3:4 To the Lord I cried out,

and he answered me from his holy hill. (Selah)

3:5 I rested and slept;

I awoke, for the Lord protects me.

3:6 I am not afraid of the multitude of people

who attack me from all directions.

3:7 Rise up, Lord!

Deliver me, my God!

Yes, you will strike all my enemies on the jaw;

you will break the teeth of the wicked.

3:8 The Lord delivers;

you show favor to your people. (Selah)



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