Psalm 34

The Happiness of Those Who Trust in God

A Psalm of David when he pretended madness before Abimelech, who drove him away, and he departed.

1 I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.  2 My soul shall make its boast in the LORD; the humble shall hear of it and be glad.  3 Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.

4 I sought the LORD, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.  5 They looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces were not ashamed.  6 This poor man cried out, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.  7 The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them.  8 Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!

9 Oh, fear the LORD, you His saints!  There is no want to those who fear Him.  10 The young lions lack and suffer hunger; but those who seek the LORD shall not lack any good thing.  11 Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.  12 Who is the man who desires life, and loves many days, that he may see good?  13 Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.  14 Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.  15 The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry.  16 The face of the LORD is against those who do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.

17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles.  18 The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit.  19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all.  20 He guards all his bones; not one of them is broken.  21 Evil shall slay the wicked, and those who hate the righteous shall be condemned.  22 The LORD redeems the soul of His servants, and none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.

The following commentary is from Warren W. Wiersbe’s book, ‘BE Worshipful’.

The title connects the psalm with David’s dangerous experience with the Philistines in Gath, as recorded in 1 Samuel 21:10–22:1, after which he fled to the cave of Adullum.  The emphasis on fearing the Lord (vv. 7, 9, 11) and trusting His goodness (vv. 8, 10, 12) would fit into this historical context.  The Philistine king is called Achish in 1 Samuel, but the dynastic title of Philistine kings was Abimelech, as in the title of the psalm……David shared in this psalm four instructions for his own followers (1 Sam. 22:1-2), as well as for us today, to help us keep out of tight situations and live a life that pleases God.

       1.  Bless the Lord  (vv. 1-3).  David was delighted to be out of enemy territory (where he probably shouldn’t have gone to begin with) and back in the wilderness with his men.  Note the verbs: bless, boast, magnify, exalt.  The name “LORD” is used sixteen times in the psalm……David gave thanks to the Lord by magnifying Him and exalting His name……He answered prayer (vv. 4, 15), provided for his needs (vv. 9-10), delivered him from trouble (v. 17), and protected him from danger (v. 7).  David didn’t boast about his own cleverness or skill; he boasted about the Lord, who He is and what He does……Knowing who we are in Christ and who the Lord is ought to make us want to bless the Lord.

        2.  Seek the Lord  (vv. 4-8).  David gave a threefold witness of what the Lord does for His own: He saves (vv. 4-8) He keeps (v.7), and He satisfies (v.8)……To seek the Lord is the same as to look to the Lord; and when we look to Him by faith, He looks to us and “shines upon us” (4:6; Num. 6:22-27).  If we walk in unbelief, our faces will be ashamed; if we walk by faith, our faces will be aglow (Ex. 34:29; Matt. 17:2; Acts 6:15; 2 Cor. 3:18)…….  

           Those who seek the Lord discover that He not only saves and keeps but also satisfies (v. 8).  “Taste” doesn’t suggest a sip or a nibble; it implies feeding on the Lord through His Word and experiencing all He has for us (1 Peter 2:3…).  It means knowing Him better and enjoying Him more……

          3.  Fear the Lord  (vv. 9-16).  Those who fear the Lord (vv. 7, 9, 11) need fear nothing else, for this is the fear that drives out all fear (112:1).  When we fear the Lord, He provides all that we need when we need it.  Verse 9 is the Old Testament equivalent of Matthew 6:33.  “No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly” (84:11).  God promises to give us what is good for us and to cause all things to work together for good (Rom. 8:28).  If we don’t receive what we think we need, it means it isn’t good for us and we don’t need it at this time……

         ‘Desire what is good’ (v. 12).  To be one who “desireth life” means desire a full life, the abundant life Christ came to give (John 10:10).  This kind of life has little to do with possessions, status, or fame; but it has a lot to do with character, faith, and a desire to honor the Lord……To cultivate a heart that desires what is good, a heart that delights in the Lord (37:4), is the first step toward the life that overflows with the blessing of the Lord.

          ‘Speak what is true’ (v. 13).  If we can control the tongue, we can control the body (James 3:1-12); :whoever guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from troubles: (Prov. 21:23).,,,,,

           ‘Pursue what is right’ (v. 14).  This means abandoning sin once and for all, doing good as God gives strength and opportunity, and being a peacemaker and not a troublemaker……”Pursue” means that we have to work at it, with the help of the Lord.

         ‘Expect what is best’ (vv. 15-16).  We must live by faith, trusting the Lord to guide us, care for us, and help us do the right thing.  We need not fear because His eyes are upon us (32:8) and His ears are attentive to our prayers.  God’s face is against those who would do evil to us……

          4.  Trust the Lord  (vv. 17-22).  Nowhere in this psalm does David suggest that the life of faith and obedience will exempt the child of God from trouble (see vv. 4, 6, 17, 19).  He does promise that, if we trust Him and call on Him, the Lord can see us through our troubles and make them a blessing to us and through us to others (See 28:7; Isa. 41:10;Heb. 13:6.)  He is also able to help us with our feelings (v. 18).  The assurance is that God is near us when our hearts are broken and our spirits are crushed, whether we feel like it or not.  This is not a promise with conditions attached to it; it is a fact. ( 69:20; 119:151…..).

             The Lord will take care of our physical safety (vv. 19-20) until our work is finished……The Lord is able to keep our enemies in check, and their own evil deeds will destroy them, for sin is its own executioner (v. 21…Prov. 5:22)……The wicked are condemned, but the righteous face no condemnation because they trust the Lord (Rom. 8:1; 33-34).  God redeemed David, just as He had redeemed Israel from Egypt, and He is able to redeem us from our troubles.

I wish everyone a very blessed day.




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