The Word Made Fresh
1The LORD is my guide and my savior.
Whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the strong fortress around me.
Of whom shall I be afraid?
2When my opponents and my enemies attack me
they will not succeed, but will fall flat.
3Even if an army surrounds me with their camps
I will not be afraid.
Even if war is declared against me
I will still be filled with confidence.
4I asked the LORD of only one thing that I earnestly seek:
to abide in the LORD’s house my whole life long,
to see the LORD’s splendor
and to pray in the LORD’s sanctuary.
5In God’s shelter I will be protected when troubles come.
I will be hidden under the LORD’s tent
high upon the rock.
6My head is raised above all the enemies that surround me.
I will offer sacrifices in God’s tent with joyful shouts,
and I will sing melodies to the LORD.
7Hear me, LORD, when I cry out to you.
Graciously answer my plea.
8My heart tells me to come and seek God’s face.
I do indeed seek your face, LORD.
9Please, don’t turn away from me,
and don’t send me away in anger,
for you have been my savior.
Don’t cast me away and turn from me now,
for you are the God who can rescue me!
10Even if my own parents should forsake me,
the LORD will stand with me.
11Show me the way I should go, LORD.
Lead me on a straightforward path
to avoid my enemies.
12Don’t surrender me to their will,
for those who bear witness against me are liars
breathing the fire of violence.
13But I believe I shall see the LORD’s goodness
while I am living.
14So, I will wait for the LORD.
I will be strong, and my heart will take courage.
I will wait for the LORD!
Superscription: the 24th “psalm of David.”
1-3: This is rather typical of hymns expressing confidence in God’s favor. Compare, for example, Psalms 18 and 118. No matter what might happen, even an enemy invasion, the psalmist is certain that God’s protection will prevail.
4-6: The great temple in Jerusalem is referred to in five ways here: it is God’s house, sanctuary, shelter, tent, and rock. Each term brings forth rich images of the way in which believers experienced God’s help through the generations.
7-10: When the psalms speak of seeking God’s face, it is an expression that means seeking God’s attention.
11-14: Threatened by false witnesses – possibly a reference to legal problems – the psalmist counsels himself to exercise patience, to wait on the LORD.
Whatever is going on in your life right now, remember that God’s protection will prevail. Whatever the outcome of your trials may be, trust that it will be God’s will, and God expects you to find the blessing that may be hidden there. Not everything God does for us seems to be a blessing at first, but patience is the sword of every sacred sufferer.