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 FRAMEWORKS: Psalm 16: Security in the Lord's Presence


A miktam of David.


[Preliminary Comments: A ‘writing' [it is suggested] of David in which he again asks for the Lord's protection [v.1], recognises the wonder of his relationship with the Lord [v.2], how he is blessed by other believers [v.3] – while rejecting unbelievers [v.4] – and indeed how that relationship means he is secure [v.5]. The end result is that he is in a good place [v.6] in the presence of the Lord who teaches him [v.7] and so, knowing this, he keeps his focus on the Lord confirming that security [v.8] in which he can rejoice [v.9] and receive protection from his life coming under threat [v.10]. Thus he knows life, joy and pleasure in the Lord [v.11]. He may be conscious of potential threats [v.1] but ultimately all else in the psalm confirms he is secure in knowing the Lord.]



v.1 A Request for protection


v.1  Keep me safe, my God,
    for in you I take refuge.


v.2 A Declaration of confidence in the Lord


v.2  I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
    apart from you I have no good thing.”

v.3 He affirms he is blessed by the other believers in the land


v.3  I say of the holy people who are in the land,
    “They are the noble ones in whom is all my delight.”

v.4 By contrast he will have nothing to do with idol worshippers


v.4  Those who run after other gods will suffer more and more.
    I will not pour out libations of blood to such gods
    or take up their names on my lips.


v.5 God is his central focus and thus he is secure


v.5  Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup;
    you make my lot secure.

v.6 His home, his location, is a blessing


v.6  The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
    surely I have a delightful inheritance.

v.7 In that place God is with him and teaches him


v.7  I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
    even at night my heart instructs me.

v.8 He has learned to keep his eyes on the Lord and that means he is secure


v.8  I keep my eyes always on the Lord.
    With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.


v.9 With all this he rejoices in his security


v.9  Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
    my body also will rest secure,

v.10 He has learned that this security means his life is not threatened really


v.10  because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead,
    nor will you let your faithful one see decay.

v.11 His walk with the Lord brings life, joy and pleasure


v.11  You make known to me the path of life;
    you will fill me with joy in your presence,
    with eternal pleasures at your right hand.



[Additional Thoughts: The world around us may present us with threats, but when we walk closely with the Lord we become more aware of his protective presence. Rather like the old hymn used to say,

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace,

similarly the fears of the earth grow strangely dim when we know His protective presence with us.]



Continue to Psa 17