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David’s psalms: Psalm 12–17; Psalm 19–21

King David was a prolific poet and songwriter, and some of his work has been passed down to us through the psalms. Many of these have no event recorded with them, so at the end of David’s life, we have a large group of ‘unallocated’ psalms.

In his letter to the Romans, Paul tells us that:

Romans 1:19-24 … what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. 22 … Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. … They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator – who is for ever praised. Amen.

Recognising God as the creator is the first step to knowing His righteousness.

Job found out this much when God (finally) answered his questions with a challenge based on the intimate role God has in His creation, from forming the earth, to having power over sea monsters, to providing food for the birds. Job’s response was to repent for questioning God’s justice.

David expressed the same idea in the poetry of his psalms. A God who has shown his hand in his creation has set up not only the physical laws that govern how we live, but also the spiritual and moral laws.

Psalm 19

The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words;
no sound is heard from them.
Yet their voice goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.
It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
It rises at one end of the heavens
and makes its circuit to the other;
nothing is deprived of its warmth.

7 The law of the Lord is perfect,
refreshing the soul.
The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy,
making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right,
giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant,
giving light to the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is pure,
enduring for ever.
The decrees of the Lord are firm,
and all of them are righteous.
They are more precious than gold,
than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
than honey from the honeycomb.
By them your servant is warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.
But who can discern their own errors?
Forgive my hidden faults.
Keep your servant also from wilful sins;
may they not rule over me.
Then I will be blameless,
innocent of great transgression.

14May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight,
Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

 

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