Face Down Your Fears – Peace from God
When David wrote this psalm, his courageous slaying of Goliath was a distant memory. That victory aroused King Saul’s jealousy, and he’d deliberately placed David in harm’s way. When that failed, he ordered his capture.
So David, on the run, escaped into the Philistine territory of Gath for sanctuary (see 1 Samuel 21:10-15).
But King Achish’s officers were suspicious. So, in a desperate ploy to save his skin, our hero stooped to faking insanity.
Interact with God’s Word: Psalm 56:1-13
- Viewed from ground level (vv. 1-2, 5-6), how grim is David’s situation?
- What is David’s natural reaction to this (v. 3)?
- What is David’s gut-level reaction (v. 7) to his enemies’ treachery?
- How would David’s previous experience (v. 13a) bolster trust now?
- How does David say he’ll respond (v. 12) to the Lord’s past protection?
- Does David see God as remote or uncaring (v. 8)?
- What is his basis (vv. 4, 11) for shaking off fear?
- How confident is he (v. 9) of God’s future protection?
- What stance (v. 13b) does David’s God-is-on-my-side review lead him to?
Spend Time in Prayer: Ask God for a growing freedom from your fears as you verify God’s ability to shield you from harm.
1 O God, have mercy on me. The enemy troops press in on me. My foes attack me all day long. 2 My slanderers hound me constantly, and many are boldly attacking me. 3 But when I am afraid, I put my trust in you.
4 O God, I praise your word. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me? 5 They are always twisting what I say; they spend their days plotting ways to harm me. 6 They come together to spy on me— watching my every step, eager to kill me.
7 Don’t let them get away with their wickedness; in your anger, O God, throw them to the ground. 8 You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book. 9 On the very day I call to you for help, my enemies will retreat. This I know: God is on my side.
10 O God, I praise your word. Yes, LORD, I praise your word. 11 I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me? 12 I will fulfill my vows to you, O God, and offer a sacrifice of thanks for your help. 13 For you have rescued me from death; you have kept my feet from slipping. So now I can walk in your presence, O God, in your life-giving light.