Written by: Tim Wood
For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil of David. When the Ziphites had gone to Saul and said, “Is not David hiding among us?”
1 Save me, O God, by your name; vindicate me by your might. 2 Hear my prayer, O God; listen to the words of my mouth. 3 Arrogant foes are attacking me; ruthless people are trying to kill me—people without regard for God. 4 Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me. 5 Let evil recoil on those who slander me; in your faithfulness destroy them. 6 I will sacrifice a freewill offering to you; I will praise your name, Lord, for it is good. 7 You have delivered me from all my troubles, and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes.
This Psalm was written by David when he was betrayed by the Ziphites. The Ziphites lived nearby and two times had “outed” David to Saul (1 Samuel 26:1). David was the rightful King of Israel and the future of Israel lay with him, not Saul. Yet, this group of people sided with Saul. David certainly felt betrayed and fearful. So what did he do? He looks to God for his deliverance and help.
David relies on the character of God. In verse 1 he asks God to save him by “your name”. The name of God is the character of God. David used three names of God in this short poem. He uses the name “Elohim” (God) in verses 1, 2, 3 and 4. The exact meaning of Elohim is not known though it seems to contain the idea of strength and power. David also uses the name “Adonai” (Lord) in verse 4. This name of God stresses His sovereignty. David calls God “Jehovah” (LORD) in verse 6. This is the covenant name of God. Putting it all together, David looks to God who has power and might and is sovereign over his circumstances. He looks to a covenant God who will never leave him or forsake him. David understands it’s the character of God that will deliver him.
David is confident that God will help him. Read verse 4 again. “Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.” This is the focus verse in this psalm. It’s worth noting that Jonathan, David’s best friend, visited him about this time and the Lord used him to encourage David. God helps us in limitless ways. Many times God uses another believer to bring us encouragement and help. I can look to my Christian friends for help and I should always be open to God using me to help others. Be confident; be assured that God will help you!
David offers praise to God. In verse 6 he sacrifices a freewill offering to God and praises His name. This wasn’t forced praise or mandatory praise. This was the overflow of a mind that is focused on the delivering power of God’s name.
Just like David we can be confident in the delivering power of God. Why not look to God’s character today? Avert your eyes from your fears and betrayals and fix them on the sovereign power of God. Realize that God is your helper today. He may send an encouraging friend to sustain you in his power. Offer a sacrifice of praise to God. “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased” (Hebrews 13:12-13).