Psalm 57:2-3 I cry out to God Most High, to God, who fulfils his purpose for me. He sends from heaven and saves me, rebuking those who hotly pursue me; Selah God sends his love and his faithfulness.
The rubric in the Hebrew text at the beginning of this Psalm tells us that it is “Of David. A miktam. When he had fled from Saul into the cave.” King Saul was quite irrational in his hot pursuit of David. He was jealous of the young man’s increasing popularity and was feeling threatened by the possibility of losing the kingship to him. He had most probably heard the stories floating around that Samuel had already anointed David as the next king of Israel (1 Samuel 16:10-13).
So Saul could not rest while ever David remained alive. In the series of psalms in this part of the Psalter, David is dealing with his fears and emotions as he faces this constant murderous threat from the master he had once so faithfully served. The secret of his survival throughout this extended time is summed up in three things that he writes in today’s two verses:
Firstly, there is the fact that his God is the omnipotent ruler over every part of his creation, the ‘God Most High’.
Secondly, there is the fact that his God has an unchangeable purpose for David’s life that must and will be fulfilled.
Thirdly, there is the fact that his God’s character embodies love (the Hebrew word, cheséd, needs additional English words like ‘mercy’ and ‘kindness’ besides ‘love’ to do justice to its full meaning), and faithfulness (the Hebrew word, amunah, comes from the word for ‘truth’ from which we get ‘amen’ – cf 2 Corinthians 1:19-20).
As you face trials and difficulties – circumstances that cause you to wonder if God is really there, or if he cares – are you able to share David’s confidence that God knows exactly what he is doing with your life, that nothing can ever stop his carrying out his plan for you in every detail, and that in everything his motivation is his mercy, lovingkindness, truth and faithfulness? Is this the basis on which you cry out to him in prayer? Personally, I am encouraged to see that even someone like godly, courageous King David had to wrestle in prayer to bring his heart and his feelings into line with what he firmly knew to be true in his head!
– Bruce Christian