Reading Time: 5 Minutes
You can tell the character of a leader by the number of times he or she uses the word “I.” King David’s character is revealed by how often he uses the word “he” in reference to the work of God in his life. Pay attention to the number of times God is praised in verses 31-34.
This God—how perfect are his deeds!
How dependable his words!
He is like a shield
for all who seek his protection.
The Lord alone is God;
God alone is our defense.
He is the God who makes me strong,
who makes my pathway safe.
He makes me sure-footed as a deer;
he keeps me safe on the mountains.
He trains me for battle,
so that I can use the strongest bow. (Psalm 18.31-34)
As we turn our attention from self to God, these verses are perfect for that occasion. We can praise God for his deeds, his protection, his defense, and the strength he gives us. We can declare that the “Lord alone is God.”
There is no wonder that the Psalms have been used for centuries by God’s followers in prayer and praise. Let’s return to Psalm 18 over and over to learn the depths of God’s nature and our response to him.
In 2 Samuel 22, David used this song to praise God for deliverance from the Philistines. After the Exile the people of God used it to declare God’s praise in bringing God’s people back to their homeland. How many times has this Psalm been used to rejoice in God’s victory over the manifold enemies that seek ruin for his people? Countless, I am sure!
O Lord, you protect me and save me;
your care has made me great,
and your power has kept me safe.
You have kept me from being captured,
and I have never fallen.
I pursue my enemies and catch them;
I do not stop until I destroy them.
I strike them down, and they cannot rise;
they lie defeated before me.
You give me strength for the battle
and victory over my enemies.
You make my enemies run from me;
I destroy those who hate me.
They cry for help, but no one saves them;
they call to the Lord, but he does not answer.
I crush them, so that they become like dust
which the wind blows away.
I trample on them like mud in the streets. (Psalm 18.32-42)
Think about your own enemies. For me, my own faulty thinking is my greatest enemy. One of the old hymns has this refrain:
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it;
Prone to leave the God I love:
Take my heart, oh, take and seal it
With Thy Spirit from above. (Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing)
This hymn expresses my tendency to sin. Verses 32-42 provide me words to pray for God’s protection and praise for God’s victory.
King David was a picture of King of all kings, Jesus Christ. David won battles with an army. Jesus conquered with a cross.
You saved me from a rebellious people
and made me ruler over the nations;
people I did not know have now become my subjects.
Foreigners bow before me;
when they hear me, they obey.
They lose their courage
and come trembling from their fortresses.
The Lord lives! Praise my defender!
Proclaim the greatness of the God who saves me.
He gives me victory over my enemies;
he subdues the nations under me
and saves me from my foes.
O Lord, you give me victory over my enemies
and protect me from violent people. (Psalm 18.43-48)
Psalm 2 is a reference to God’s Anointed King. In its original setting, it referred to King David. In its fulfilled setting, Jesus the Anointed – the Messiah or Christ – is the focal point. Psalm 2 says:
Ask, and I will give you all the nations;
the whole earth will be yours. (Psalm 2.8)
As we think of God’s victory, let’s pray Psalm 2.8 for Jesus’ victory over sin and death. Let’s pray for Jesus to conquer his enemies by making them his friends. Let’s ask Jesus to conquer any resistance to his rule we may feel in our own lives.
King David ended this great Psalm with praise. Let’s join him in praising the our Savior and Lord.
And so I praise you among the nations;
I sing praises to you.
God gives great victories to his king;
he shows constant love to the one he has chosen,
to David and his descendants forever. (Psalm 18.49-50)
May We Pray For You?
Maywood Baptist Church has a prayer team that is happy to pray for you. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on Facebook. I will be sure to communicate your prayer request to them.