Psalm 5 - Hear My Prayer

INTRODUCTION: The first three verses of this Psalm immediately bring to my mind the words and the melody from a song by the Haven of Rest Quartet that I first heard some years ago. Many psalms like this one offered in worship by the temple singers in the early days of Israel's kingdom have since provided inspiration for adaptation to additional songs of worship in more recent times. The poetic nature of these writings can serve to aid our memory for recalling worshipful thoughts about our God and our King.

NOTE: Scripture passages are from the American King James Version.


A - AN OFFERING OF PRAYER TO THE LORD

Psalm 5 "1 Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation. 2 Listen to the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for to you will I pray. 3 My voice shall you hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer to you, and will look up."

COMMENTS: The psalmist asks to be heard as he prays to the Lord, and he acknowledges that the Lord can respond not only to our spoken words, but even to the meditations of our heart. God is our Lord who has absolute authority over us as exercised in his love, and he is our king who will provide citizenship for us in a kingdom that transcends our present earthly realm. There is no other god or authority who can hear and answer our prayers with no limitation to his power. As each new day will have potential for blessings or difficulties, we need to look up to the one who is our constant source of help, and let our praise and requests be known.


B - THE LORD DOES NOT HAVE PLEASURE IN WICKEDNESS

Psalm 5 "4 For you are not a God that has pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with you. 5 The foolish shall not stand in your sight: you hate all workers of iniquity. 6 You shall destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man. 7 But as for me, I will come into your house in the multitude of your mercy: and in your fear will I worship toward your holy temple."

COMMENTS: the LORD of glory has no pleasure in wickedness, and their is absolutely no acceptance of any form of evil to have a place of dwelling with the LORD. If the foolish are to have any hope, they must first understand that if unconverted they will not be able to stand in the sight of the LORD, for you hate all workers of sinful, immoral, and unjust acts. You shall destroy those who speak lies. You will abhor the cruel and deceitful man. Scripture recorded the certainty of their coming destruction even long before this psalm was written. Job "34:22 There is no darkness, nor shadow of death, where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves." The LORD'S mercy is the only thing that separates the upright from the unrighteous. Anytime we come before the LORD to worship him, it is because of the vast array of his mercies given to us. Another scripture sets a contrast between those who trust in the LORD, and those who do not. Proverbs "10:29 The way of the LORD is strength to the upright: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity."


C - THE LORD PROVIDES HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS

Psalm 5 "8 Lead me, O LORD, in your righteousness because of my enemies; make your way straight before my face. 9 For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; their inward part is very wickedness; their throat is an open sepulcher; they flatter with their tongue. 10 Destroy you them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against you."

COMMENTS: We do not find our own way to righteousness, but the LORD leads us in that path to himself. This does not immediately remove us from the environment of the world, and the enemies of the LORD are also our enemies as we follow the way the LORD has prepared for us. Those who reject the LORD may use flattering speech, but their innermost thoughts and intents are not trustworthy for they come from the seat of a vicious and depraved heart. The words they speak flow out as if coming from an open grave, to draw those who listen receptively into a trap of death. Therefore LORD, I pray that you will cast them out to their just destruction for their rebellion against you. Their demise will be a result of their own counsels embodied in the multitude of their violations of your holy commands.


D - THE LORD'S RIGHTEOUSNESS BRINGS JOY

Psalm 5 "11 But let all those that put their trust in you rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because you defend them: let them also that love your name be joyful in you. 12 For you, LORD, will bless the righteous; with favor will you compass him as with a shield."

COMMENTS: All who trust in the LORD by his grace have great reason to be joyful as those who love your name, and even to shout for joy with an ever present attitude of rejoicing because you defend them. The apostle Paul spoke of this reality as provided through Christ. Romans "8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? 32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifies." You LORD will bless those who are righteous through Christ, and your favor will encompass them with an impenetrable shield. Other scriptures concur with the protection afforded to those who have placed their trust in the LORD. Genesis "15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am your shield, and your exceeding great reward." Psalm "28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoices; and with my song will I praise him." Proverbs "30:5 Every word of God is pure: he is a shield to them that put their trust in him."


--- REFLECTIONS IN PRAYER ---

Each time I come to you Lord, I want my words, whether brief or lengthy, to be from a sincere heart and lifted before you with the confidence that you have allowed me by your grace to come before you, my king and my God. You have rescued me from my own sinfulness, but you hate those who will not respond to your grace and mercy. It is only your righteousness applied to my soul that protects me from your enemies who will hate me as they have hated you. Lead me safely in your right pathways and let those who remain in rebellion against you fall by following their own sinful counsel. Enable all those who put their trust in you Lord to rejoice and even shout for joy because you are the defender of your own as you bless them and provide that unfailing protection of your love and power as by an incomparable shield. Amen.

Published 28 October 2012