Psalm 7 - God Is My Shield

INTRODUCTION: The title of this Psalm names David as the author and Cush a Benjamite as one who has slandered him in a most threatening manner. The time frame for the writing of the Psalm is left undetermined by the content, but the plea to God for rescue and the praise at the conclusion illustrate David's trust in the Lord even during very difficult circumstances.

NOTE: Scripture passages are from the 1901 American Standard Version.


A - DAVID TRUSTED IN JEHOVAH FOR REFUGE

Psalm 7 "1 [Shiggaion of David, which he sang unto Jehovah, concerning the words of Cush a Benjamite.] O Jehovah my God, in thee do I take refuge: Save me from all them that pursue me, and deliver me, 2 Lest they tear my soul like a lion, Rending it in pieces, while there is none to deliver. 3 O Jehovah my God, if I have done this; If there be iniquity in my hands; 4 If I have rewarded evil unto him that was at peace with me; (Yea, I have delivered him that without cause was mine adversary;) 5 Let the enemy pursue my soul, and overtake it; Yea, let him tread my life down to the earth, And lay my glory in the dust. Selah."

COMMENTS: David called out to God as his source of refuge and asks for protection and deliverance from all who had a desire to violently attack him to take his life because he said no one else could rescue him. David stated to Jehovah that if he was guilty of sinning by rewarding evil to anyone who has been at peace with him then he wanted God to allow his enemy to overtake him, and take his life so his glory would be laid in the dust. David said that on the contrary he has even kept from harming one who had been his enemy without cause. Such a situation could certainly apply to the two times David had not harmed King Saul when he had opportunity to kill him as Saul was pursuing David to take his life, but there is no clear evidence that was his reference.


B - THE RIGHTEOUS GOD EXAMINES BOTH THE MIND AND THE HEART

Psalm 7 "6 Arise, O Jehovah, in thine anger; Lift up thyself against the rage of mine adversaries, and awake for me; thou hast commanded judgment. 7 And let the congregation of the peoples compass thee about; And over them return thou on high. 8 Jehovah ministereth judgment to the peoples: Judge me, O Jehovah, according to my righteousness, and to mine integrity that is in me. 9 O let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but establish thou the righteous: For the righteous God trieth the minds and hearts."

COMMENTS: David asked Jehovah to rise up in righteous anger to take action against the unjustified violent anger of David's adversaries and to be aroused to the judgment that Jehovah has commanded. This expressed the belief that David held about the judgment that awaits the unrighteous at the time set by Jehovah, and David asked to have Jehovah stir into action for the immediate need. Thereby Jehovah would take his high position over the congregation to administer justice as they assembled around their God. David was willing to have his own righteousness and integrity examined by Jehovah, because those who would be found to be wicked before God would come to their end. The righteous are established before the one who can examine every detail of the thoughts and inmost motivations of all people. David was submitting himself to the mercy of the God in whom he believed and trusted. This then would be counted to David as righteousness from God as it was for Abraham. Galatians 3 "6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned unto him for righteousness. 7 Know therefore that they that are of faith, the same are sons of Abraham. 8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand unto Abraham, [saying,] In thee shall all the nations be blessed." This has been God's standard long before David's life, and up to the present era.


C - GOD IS A SHIELD TO SAVE THE UPRIGHT IN HEART

Psalm 7 "10 My shield is with God, Who saveth the upright in heart. 11 God is a righteous judge, Yea, a God that hath indignation every day. 12 If a man turn not, he will whet his sword; He hath bent his bow, and made it ready. 13 He hath also prepared for him the instruments of death; He maketh his arrows fiery [shafts]."

COMMENTS: David believed in the shield of faith that Paul later wrote about in his letter to the Ephesians. Ephesians 6 "14 Stand therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 withal taking up the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the evil [one]." The one who has placed full trust in Jehovah will be safe from the attacks of Satan and from future judgment. The wicked will receive the judgment that Moses had delivered from Jehovah to the tribes of Israel, which is in part restated in this Psalm. Deuteronomy 32 "39 See now that I, even I, am he, And there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal; And there is none that can deliver out of my hand. 40 For I lift up my hand to heaven, And say, As I live for ever, 41 If I whet my glittering sword, And my hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine adversaries, And will recompense them that hate me. 42 I will make mine arrows drunk with blood, And my sword shall devour flesh; With the blood of the slain and the captives, From the head of the leaders of the enemy." There is no escape from the God of all creation for those who have hated and rejected him.


D - THE WICKED MAN CONCEIVES EVIL BUT IT WILL RECOIL UPON HIM

Psalm 7 "14 Behold, he travaileth with iniquity; Yea, he hath conceived mischief, and brought forth falsehood. 15 He hath made a pit, and digged it, And is fallen into the ditch which he made. 16 His mischief shall return upon his own head, And his violence shall come down upon his own pate."

COMMENTS: David gave a metaphoric summary of the actions of the wicked man that begins with the plans of lies and wrongdoing he prepares in his thoughts. He lays a trap for his victim but it becomes his own snare. The shame and disgrace he intended for another will be applied to him, and the violence will fall onto the top of his own head. God can bring this about within the lifetime of the malefactor as seen in the two examples that follow, as well as in the time for final judgment. . 1 Kings 2 "43 Why then hast thou not kept the oath of Jehovah, and the commandment that I have charged thee with? 44 The king said moreover to Shimei, Thou knowest all the wickedness which thy heart is privy to, that thou didst to David my father: therefore Jehovah shall return thy wickedness upon thine own head. 45 But king Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David shall be established before Jehovah for ever. 46 So the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he went out, and fell upon him, so that he died. And the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon." Even when God's people are under the civil government of unbelievers, Jehovah may bring about present recompense. Esther 9 "24 because Haman the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite, the enemy of all the Jews, had plotted against the Jews to destroy them, and had cast Pur, that is the lot, to consume them, and to destroy them; 25 but when [the matter] came before the king, he commanded by letters that his wicked device, which he had devised against the Jews, should return upon his own head, and that he and his sons should be hanged on the gallows."


E - GIVE THANKS FOR THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF JEHOVAH AND PRAISE HIS NAME

Psalm 7 "17 I will give thanks unto Jehovah according to his righteousness, And will sing praise to the name of Jehovah Most High."

COMMENTS: David is firm in his commitment to continue giving thanks to Jehovah for the righteousness of God that has grounded David's faith. After he had gone through the process of voicing his requests and reflecting on the unwavering ways of God in which he trusted, he then set his heart to sing praise to the name of Jehovah Most High. I believe David would have agreed with the counsel offered by Paul many centuries later. Philippians 4 "6 In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus." Such peace from our Lord is certainly worthy of our continual and fervent praise to him.

--- REFLECTIONS IN PRAYER ---

LORD, I want to trust completely in the refuge you provide for me from the trials in my life with the type of confidence that David expressed, and I want to remember to bring my requests before you in prayer. Impress upon my heart that you have the full knowledge of every one of my thoughts and intents, and you will judge them in your mercy and righteousness. LORD, you have provided a shield of faith that protects me against the accusations and attacks of the evil one and of those who follow his ways. Though I sometimes feel impatient about the full establishment of your kingdom with reward to the believers, yet I trust you, LORD, for the final punishment you have also prepared to recoil onto those who are your enemies. As I wait for your future kingdom I offer thanks and praise from my whole heart, Jehovah Most High, for the righteousness you have given me through my faith in Christ. Amen and amen!

Published 6 April 2015