LORD, how many are my foes!
How many rise up against me!
Many are saying of me,
“God will not deliver him. ”
But you, LORD, are a shield around me,
my glory, the One who lifts my head high.
I call out to the LORD,
and he answers me from his holy mountain.
I lie down and sleep;
I wake again, because the LORD sustains me.
I will not fear though tens of thousands
assail me on every side.
Deliver me, my God!
Strike all my enemies on the jaw;
break the teeth of the wicked.
From the LORD comes deliverance.
May your blessing be on your people.
David was the second king of Israel. God describes David as “a man after my own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). He anointed David king while Saul, the first king, was still on the throne and David was still a youth. Later, God would promise David: “Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever” (2 Samuel 7:16). This promise was, of course, fulfilled by the coming of Jesus from the lineage of David.
Despite the favor David had in God’s sight, he didn’t have it easy. He was hunted for the early part of his life by King Saul, who was jealous of the young man’s popularity and success and wanted him dead. David eventually became king, but his problems did not cease. Well into his reign, his third son Absalom plotted to kill his father and take over the throne (see 2 Samuel 15,16). Despite being murderously hunted by Absalom and hounded by enemies out for his blood on every side, we see David’s faith in God remains firm. He calls out to God, knowing that God will answer, even if he does take his time, and so sleeps without fear.
We, too, face opposition in our lives, sometimes from overwhelming odds. At times like these, we lose faith and turn to other solutions for our problems, including inner resources. However, human effort or human solutions are like a man waving a stick at a charging lion. The only one who can protect us is God, and only a total surrender of self will allow his strength to manifest in us.
We have even more reason for faith than David because we have seen the glory of God in full display through his Son, Jesus. He went through far worse rejection than David did, but unlike David, Jesus did not call on God to strike his enemies down. On the contrary, he allowed his enemies to strike him. We learn to triumph over our enemies with love. Difficult? Not when we are recipients of divine grace. God would tell Paul when the apostle was struggling: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). Say Amen.
God bless you.