My wife and I are reading through the Psalms in our evening reading and occasionally a nugget of the Psalms jumps out of the page. Don’t you love it when, after years of reading the “Old Book” passages become alive, reinforcing old teachings or simply warming your heart.
This is the book of Psalms, and it is rich.
In our previous post, I supplied an introduction to this psalm that may be beneficial for review if you have not read it. Psalms for Psome – Ps 34 – A
Lets continue with Psalm 34:4-6
4 I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.
6 This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him and saved him out of all his troubles.
David speaks of three actions, all directed to the One who is the Savior.
Seeking the Lord
In David’s plight, his self inflicted trouble, in his humiliation and shame, he sought the Lord. When he had nothing but trouble, he asked for the Lord’s mercy. In his fear before Achish, he asked for deliverance from his situation. David had nothing to offer to the Lord but fears, yet the Lord took pleasure in answering David’s prayer and delivering him from his fears.
This last two years have seen an increase (exponentially) of fear pedaling upon the population. Many nights I would fall into fitful periods of sleep, expecting to die of a man made disease. If death wasn’t chasing me, utter poverty and sorrow would surely engulf me and my loved ones. There seemed to be no escape. I begged for mercy before the Lord, and yet I continued to struggle with fear, a debilitating fear.
David tells us he was delivered from all his fears. He sought the Lord. May I suggest he didn’t seek the Lord for self preservation, but simply sought the Lord. He looked for the Lord in this time of his life. There is a difference!
Looking to the Lord
Above I suggested David looked for the Lord in his trial. In this verse, David speaks of looking to the Lord. In my mind, there is a difference, and I find it instructive to consider the difference.
To “look to” someone is an admission of dependency, of admitting of a need, and that the One we look to is the only One that can help.
Consider it this way.
When I am at work and chatting with my mechanical engineer, I tell him I am “looking to” him to complete the P&ID’s. I have no skill, ability, knowledge, understanding or thoughts on the package I need from him. Dang it, it has only been a few weeks that I knew what those dang letters meant! (Piping & Instrument Diagram). But I looked to him for delivering this to our client. He, that is my mechanical engineer, delivered the package. He was able. I was not. When I told him I was “looking to him” for the package, I was admitting my ignorance, and inability to perform the action.
Same with David in this situation. He “looked to” the Lord, since he had no strength, or understanding, no wisdom or ability to perform the required deliverance.
And he was radiant! This is life changing! Quit trying to fix everything Carl – You are out of your depths! Look to the One who is mighty, and joy will flood your soul, radiance will be the fruit of my admission of weakness.
In our last post we referred to John 3:30, where John the Baptist declared – “He must increase, but I must decrease.” So much could be said about this verse, yet the connection with David in Psalm 34 seems so obvious in my deliberations
Look to the Lord, and quit looking to your own self for the answers!
Crying to the Lord
When I was an itty bitty youngin, I tended to be a weepy fella. I would cry at the drop of a hat, to the point where I was tagged with a nickname that emphasized my “weakness” (No – I am not going to reveal my nickname!)
David is not speaking of weeping in this verse. This is a call out for help. This term is used in Genesis 1:5, where the Word states “God called the light day….” It is a very common term for declaring, for stating, for proclaiming. It can imply an emotional call out to the Lord of heaven, but emotion is not the focus here, but that of calling out a truth, a fact, confessing a reality.
David stated facts. Consider the following three facts in this verse.
- He was a poor man
- Destitute in his strength, wisdom, understanding, conditions, situations, trials…. He stated his need. Oh the blessedness of understanding our need for the Lord.
- The Lord heard him
- The Lord is one whose ears are open, especially astute to the truth, for He is the truth and the fountain of all life. He resonates with our confessing truth, (whether it be good or bad truth, from our standpoint)
- David isn’t speaking simply of the Lord receiving vibrations of David’s vocal chords, but of hearing the need, of understanding David’s cry.
- The Lord Delivered him out of all his troubles
- This is a timely reminder that in the midst of our trials and troubles, He is the deliverer. Of course we must see this as a call to deliver others out of their troubles when we are able, but the point of the verse is the the future king of Israel was at the mercy of his circumstances, with Saul nipping at his heals, and in front of an enemy king!
- At some point in our lives our situation may seem hopeless, but remember that He is the Savior, and not we ourselves.
We need to understand our neediness before the Creator Redeemer, our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.
But more so than that, and primarily the source of our understanding our need, is a correct view of God, the Almighty God who is all knowing, full of wisdom, exercising mercy upon generations and Who is Love.
May His name be honored in our lives today.
Thanks again for coming to visit. I hope you found something of interest in this post and would appreciate a comment, to begin a discussion.