Daily in the Psalms : Psalm 34
psalms 34A SONG OF PRAISE
I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the LORD: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad. O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together. I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. They looked unto him, and were lightened: and their faces were not ashamed. This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. Psalms 34:1-7
Every day of the Christian life there are opportunities for the Lord to work in blessing and mercy. Because of this we ought to have a new song of praise to sing each day. When we reach the end, we should be able to look back over a life filled with daily praise to Him. This is what we see David doing in this Psalm. The Psalmist is praising the Lord, Jehovah. He is the self-existent Creator. Our praise should be:
David says, “I will.” His praise comes freely from his heart. Praise is his life not just his duty; it is his delight, not his burden.
He says, “At all times.” Our circumstances may change, but God never changes. He is worthy of our praise in adversity and in prosperity, in our darks hours of despair or our bright moments of joy. Just as the lamps burned continually in the Temple, praise ought to flow from our hearts continually.
He says his soul shall boast or glory in the Lord. He was rejoicing in the watch care of his God. Some may boast in the physical strength, their personal riches, their intelligence, or even their religion, but David boasted only in the Lord.
God was his true glory. He is the Only One that can truly satisfy and bless our soul.
There is influence when the poor, needy, and meek bow their heads in true worship and praise. Those that are rich and worldly may praise, but their praise is usually in themselves or their possessions and it is an offense to God and to those that observe it. But the praise of God’s humble people is a sweet smelling Savor to God and it always gets His attention. It also gets the attention of those that observe them. The grace of God can touch others through our heart-felt praise. One person rising to praise God will naturally cause others to do the same. It is the will of God that we praise Him and that our voices join together to magnify His Name. Our feeble efforts could never add to His Name because He is Infinite, Unchangeable, and Eternal. Nothing we do could increase or diminish His glory. But our praise could increase His Name to others around us. It could cause His Name, His cause, and His character to grow in their sight and they would see that He is the supreme object of our love and praise. The Church ought to be a place of unified worship. We ought to celebrate our new life in Him and our hope of heaven and the gift of eternal life. We will spend eternity praising Him and our life here ought to reflect our promised life to come.
I’ve known God presence in times of pain,
I know not what the events of this day may bring,
Many times we find ourselves in a place where we must have the deliverance of God. Sometimes we are in that place of our own doing. This is where David was. Our sin must not deter us from calling on God in our hour of need. In fact, it should make us pray more earnestly. The Word of God promises us an Advocate with the Father and this promise extends even to the rebellious. The Bible says that where sin abounds, grace does much more abound. Our Advocate, the Lord Jesus Christ, can and will deliver us from all our fears. We pray, as we should, for God to deliver us from our present troubles and He does that at times, but as we said, that is only for the present. When we are delivered from our fears; that is a gift for now and for the future. We are not only safe; we are secure. This is a privilege reserved only for the saved. The lost may find some relief form their troubles, but because they don’t know the Lord it is doubtful that they could ever be free from fear. What a blessed hope we have to look toward God’s loving kindness and know that God hears us when we pray and know that He cares for us. What a blessing it is for the Saint of God to call on Him in expectation, looking for Him to fulfill His promise and fill our soul with His light and truth. What a blessing it is to remember all the times that He has delivered us in the past. Because of what He has done, we can sing the song of victory, even in the midst of present troubles.
Only two times in the Book of Psalms do we have the phrase, “The Angel of the Lord.” This is remarkable in that it speaks of the Angel of the Lord and the Lord Himself at the same time. The Lord camps around us to give us His protection, what shall we fear?
VIEWS OF RELIGION
O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him. The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing. Psalms 34:8-10
Because of the world’s perversion of the word “Religion” we have almost thrown it out and hardly use it any more. The Bible speaks of pure and undefiled religion. It is the influence of our faith in God upon our lives and our souls. Our reference to religion here is that influence and faith. Religion is that which belongs to the soul; it is not ritual, but a way of life. It is that which is personal between the soul of man and his God. It is not something that can be done for us by a priest or even the Church.
IT IS PERSONAL FAITH THAT GOD IS GOOD
Religion is the personal understanding and knowledge of God, His Word, and His will for our lives. It is receiving the personal revelation of His mysteries or counsel by our faith in Christ. Religion is the maintenance of our relationship with God. The Bible describes it as a covenant, between the soul and God. He makes it possible that by faith we have a love for Him and a communion or walk with Him.
That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. 1John 1:3
It is more than a feeling, more than just knowledge, and more than just obedience to a moral code; it is the sacred bond, freely accepted and generously given. It is the testimony that our soul is miraculously attached to God. Biblical religion is absolutely practical. It is God’s power given to every Christian to bring us into a closer relationship with Him. Our relationship with God is important. It is important to us and also to God. If our personal relationship with God is wrong, everything else in our life is wrong. If our relationship with Him is right, everything else in our life will be right.
It is based on trust:
O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. Psalms 34:8
It is based on fear:
O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him. Psalms 34:9
And it is based on seeking Him:
The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing. Psalms 34:10
Just as there are consequences for not becoming a Christian, there are also consequences for becoming a Christian. When you truly become acquainted with the greatness and goodness of God, His character affects your character. There is no way to become a child of God without that relationship changing you. While the best and strongest men will be reduced to want without God, the Christian is abundantly and constantly cared for By God. This Divine relationship calls for and even demands faith, hope, and love. It appeals to the deepest feelings of the human heart. Once this relationship is personally experienced, the recipient is absolutely convinced of its excellence
IT DESERVES OUR EARNEST STUDY
The saved soul will have a desire to investigate every truth given to us in God’s Word. Our faith does not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. Therefore we are compelled to “Search the Scriptures.”
These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. Acts 17:11
It is only reasonable to assume that the most wondrous relationship in the world should be personally and profoundly studied.
IT DESERVES PERSONAL PRACTICE
O taste and see that the LORD is good… Psalms 34:8
There is nothing as convincing as personal experience. The only way that we can experience and realize what this relationship can do for us is to put its principles into practice in our lives. It is one thing to hear and believe that honey is sweet, but it is quite another to taste it for yourself.
IT DESERVES A FAITHFUL WITNESS
It is the duty of every Christian to declare the blessedness of this relationship. Our love for God and our fellow man constrains us to recommend this relationship. This recommendation must be accurate and just so it will draw men and not repel them.
Our witness must be demonstrated by our humility, patience, love, purity in the sight of others, and our trust in God. “O taste and see that the LORD is good” comes out of a heart of experience and belief. It is the proclamation of truth and joy.
THE ADULLAM SERMON
Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. Psalms 34:11-14
It is the conclusion of most commentators that these words were the words of David as he was hiding in the cave of Adullam:
David therefore departed thence, and escaped to the cave Adullam: and when his brethren and all his father’s house heard it, they went down thither to him. And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men. 1Samuel 22:1-2
This is a strange and diverse gathering. They did have a lot in common; they were expecting the same fate, they stood with the same resolve, they stood together, and they were willing to die for their leader. David was that chosen leader and here we find him addressing his followers. David was a fierce warrior and a famous figure in the land. The poor and the oppressed easily identified with him as well as the noble. His unwavering faith in his God drew men to him and his cause. His faith in God and God’s evident hand upon him gave his followers the assurance that he was born to be a king. These devoted followers listened with careful attention. He begins his address with the word “Children.” This not only expressed his authority, but also his tender love for them.
HIS SUBJECT WAS IMPORTANT – “The Fear Of The Lord!”
These men had common trials, common bonds, and common hopes. But they needed much more than that; they needed David’s faith. They needed the fear of Jehovah God to unite their hearts and give them strength.
HIS TREATMENT OF THEM WAS KIND AND AFFECTIONATE
He began by pleading for their attention, “Hearken unto me.” He spoke words they needed to hear, “I will teach you to fear the Lord.” He appeals to their own desires, “What man is he that desireth life and loveth many days, that he may see good?” He demands their obedience and even their lives, “Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.” The background of this crowd was a rough one, they had many things in their past to cause them to do the wrong thing. There was past sins, past mistreatment, their desire for revenge, and their very struggle for survival. There was much to make their lives bitter and cause them to return evil for evil. But David pleads with them and even demands that they do right. They were going to have to keep themselves pure and seek the peace of God. That is the only way they would be able to expect the favor of God. Revenge and/or evil would not make them happy; happiness is found in the blessings of God. When we know God knows all about our troubles and that we are the objects of His love and care, when we know that His ear is open to our prayers, when we are confident that He will supply our needs, then and only then do we truly know happiness in this life. If we choose to do evil and transgress His ways, we will have His face set against us and that will produce a life of misery.
So Glad To Be So Saved
Danny "Preacher" Bezet