The Psalms We Sing - Psalm 63
The Psalms We Sing: Psalm 63
O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. 63:2 Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. 63:3 Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You. 63:4 So I will bless You as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. 63:5 My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips. 63:6 When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches, 63:7 For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy. 63:8 My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me. 63:9 But those who seek my life to destroy it, Will go into the depths of the earth. 63:10 They will be delivered over to the power of the sword; They will be a prey for foxes. 63:11 But the king will rejoice in God; Everyone who swears by Him will glory, For the mouths of those who speak lies will be stopped.
A. Thirsting for the Lord (v.1)
B. Knowing God’s Covenant Love (vv.2-3)
C. Results in Praise (vv.4-5)
A’. Thirsting for the Lord (vv.6-8)
B’. Knowing God’s Covenant Deliverance (vv.9-10)
C’. Results in Praise (v.11)
1) We will thirst for the Lord if we know His Covenant Love (vv.1-5). Through the Psalm David expresses his desire in that he “seeks” earnestly and his “soul thirsts” for the Lord. His flesh “yearns” for the Lord (v.1). He sees literally and metaphorically (in the desert) that everything else is dry and weary. David thirsts for the Lord because he has seen God in the sanctuary. Specifically He has seen God’s power and glory (v. 2). Seeing God as He is has led him to see that the covenant love (hesed) of the Lord is “better than life.” The result is that the Lord is to be “blessed” and worshiped. The experience of authentic worship brings the realization that “My soul is satisfied” as with literally “fat food” (deshen).
2) We will thirst for the Lord if we trust His Covenant Deliverance (vv.6-11). David seeks God in his “down time” (“on my bed”). In the restlessness of troubled times he contemplates (meditates) the Lord’s salvation/deliverance. God has been his help, his cover, and his strength (v.7-8). David knows that the enemies that hunger to destroy him will be “delivered over” to His Covenant Protector. Their mouths will be stopped. Those who would prey upon him will become prey because David prays. The result of hungering for the Lord is to glimpse His glory. “Everyone who swears by Him will glory” (v.11).
Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more