Written by: Tim Wood
Thank you for joining the summer in the Psalms online bible study. Let’s start with a word of prayer. “Lord, open my eyes and my mind to see your wisdom and truth today. I need it and you can provide it. In Jesus Name – AMEN.”
Psalm 34 was written by David. There are 14 Psalms, written by David, that contain a heading letting us know why he wrote the Psalm. I love when we can get this background information because it helps us know how to apply the Psalm in our own life. Psalm 34 was written after David pretended to be insane before Abimelech (1 Samuel 21:10-15). David was fleeing from Saul. He was afraid. Fear had replaced his faith in God and he tried to find refuge from the King of Gath. Some of the people of Gath recognized David and he feared for his life so he pretended to be insane. For some of us, we don’t have to pretend. Our schedules can drive us crazy. Our relationships can do the same. World events leave us full of fear and faith in God gets pushed aside…that’s nuts, that’s insanity.
So what did David do? He escaped back to his brothers and wrote Psalm 34. It’s a Psalm that helps us get our minds off of the insanity we may be facing and back on God. We’ll look at it in sections. Today let’s focus on verses 1-3 from the New Living Translation:
1 I will praise the Lord at all times.
I will constantly speak his praises.
2 I will boast only in the Lord;
let all who are helpless take heart.
3 Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness;
let us exalt his name together.
The verbs in these verses tell us how David put his attention back on God – praise, speak, boast, tell, exalt. Praise the Lord. Speak of the Lord. Boast in the Lord. Tell of the Lord’s greatness. Exalt the name of the Lord.
Focusing our blessing and praise on the Lord should be a consistent practice in our life – “at all times, constantly speaking His praises”.
It should be a corporate practice in our life – “let us”. David is experiencing the presence of the Lord with his brothers. He’s enjoying community. When we worship the Lord in community together, it brings sanity to our insanity.
It should be a courageous practice in our life – “let all who are helpless take heart.” David felt a sense of helplessness as he feared for his life. But as his attention turned to the greatness of God his confidence in God soared to new heights. Paul wrote, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31).
When I am full of fear I am acting like I don’t know God. When I am full of praise for the Lord I am joining a heavenly army and I am full of faith.
Where are your eyes today? What is your attention on today? Begin to praise the Lord, talk about him and boast in him. Faith will begin to replace fear. Like the hymn says, “Turn your eyes on Jesus. Look full in his wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace!”
Prayer: Father, in this insane world in which I live, remind me to praise you at all times, speak of your greatness consistently and boast in you only. Fill me with Your word and courage today. Amen.
Join me next week as we look at another section of Psalm 34.