The Word Made Fresh
(A song: a psalm of David.)
1My heart is devoted, O God, my heart is devoted.
I will sing a song to arouse my soul.
2Awaken, harp and lyre! Awaken the dawn!
3In the midst of all the people I give thanks to you, LORD,
and sing your praises among all the nations.
4Your love is steadfast, higher than the sky,
and your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
5You are highly praised, O God, higher than the heavens.
You are glorified across the whole world.
6With your good right hand give us victory,
so that those whom you love might be saved.
7In the sanctuary God has made a promise:
“In celebration I will separate Shechem
and divide the valley of Succoth.
8Gilead is mine. Manasseh is mine.
Ephraim is my helmet. Judah is my scepter.
9Moab is my bath. Edom is my shoe rack.
Philistia is my conquest.”
10Who will bring me to a safe haven?
Who will lead me to Edom?
11Have you rejected us, O God?
You no longer accompany our armies.
12Help us against our enemy,
for human help is not at all helpful.
13But with God we will be brave,
for God will walk over our enemies.
Superscription: David’s 59th.
1-4: The psalm begins with the steadfast heart of a faithful author praising the steadfast love of God.
5-6: It is a morning prayer; the dawn has arrived (verse 2) and the sun’s ascent gives rise to the sentiment that God will be exalted “above the heavens.”
7-9: The collection of nations and tribes in these verses is evidence that this particular psalm predates the division of Judah and Israel after the death of Solomon.
10-13: However, it is also a time of war with Edom, at a moment when the war is not going well. This description seems to fit best with a later time, when Joram king of Judah lost his hold over the Edomites (2 Kings 8:21).
The psalm presents a scenario that we might hope never to experience – war with neighboring nations. But we can still imagine how we might need God on our side when we face the trials of life. This psalm is a simple outline for prayer in troubled times: praise God, then ask for God’s help in the present situation.