Each Day in the Word, Saturday, September 30, 2023

Psalm 27:1-14 NKJV

27 The Lord is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked came against me
To eat up my flesh,
My enemies and foes,
They stumbled and fell.
Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident.

One thing I have desired of the Lord,
That will I seek:
That I may dwell in the house of the Lord
All the days of my life,
To behold the beauty of the Lord,
And to inquire in His temple.
For in the time of trouble
He shall hide me in His pavilion;
In the secret place of His tabernacle
He shall hide me;
He shall set me high upon a rock.

And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me;
Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle;
I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.

Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice!
Have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
When You said, “Seek My face,”
My heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.”
Do not hide Your face from me;
Do not turn Your servant away in anger;
You have been my help;
Do not leave me nor forsake me,
O God of my salvation.
10 When my father and my mother forsake me,
Then the Lord will take care of me.

11 Teach me Your way, O Lord,
And lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies.
12 Do not deliver me to the will of my adversaries;
For false witnesses have risen against me,
And such as breathe out violence.
13 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

14 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

In Luther’s “Summaries of the Psalms” of 1531 he says this: “The 27th Psalm is a psalm of thanks, yet it also prays much and gives us comfort against the false teachers, who give a false witness, blaspheming without any hesitation. For only entirely foolhardy saints give a witness, bold and impudent, before God—from whom they have no command! It is as we see daily; the more foolish and unlearned the people are, the more bold and audacious they are to preach and to teach the whole world. No one knows anything; they alone know all. They prepare themselves well to make war and revolt against the true saints and God-fearers.”

Luther characterizes Psalm 27 as a psalm of thanks that also serves as a prayer offering profound comfort. In a world fraught with false teachers who distort the truth and blaspheme without hesitation, the psalm becomes a sanctuary of reassurance for believers. Luther’s description of “entirely foolhardy saints” echoes the audacity of those who preach without a divine calling. These individuals, driven by their own motives rather than God’s command, present a façade of knowledge and piety. Their boldness stands in stark contrast to the humble, God-fearing believers who rely on God’s Word as their foundation.

In the Psalm, David seeks the Lord’s face—it is a prayer for intimate communion and acknowledges that God’s answers may not always come in the way or time we expect. This echoes our faith’s emphasis on the importance of God’s Word as our guiding light amid life’s uncertainties.

Luther’s caution against false teachers aligns with David’s plea for deliverance from enemies and adversaries. In the midst of opposition, David’s confidence remains steadfast, rooted in God’s promises. This serves as a powerful reminder that true boldness doesn’t stem from self-serving motives but from a deep trust in God’s faithfulness.

Let us pray: Lord, we pray that your grace may always go before and follow after us, that we may always be ready to do your good works; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

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