Psalm 40: Testimony & Petition
the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
Comments: Another song of testimony and petition from
David. It starts with testimony [v.1-3], declaring the principle
that the Lord blessed those who trust in Him [v.4] for His activities
are many and plain to be seen [v.5]. The Lord hadn't wanted lots
of sacrifices from David [v.6], just his obedience [v.7,8] and
David had already testified to the Lord's goodness to him [v.9,10]
yet there are still prevailing circumstances where he needs the
Lord's help [v.11-13] for he still has enemies who would seek
to pull him down [v.14,15]. He knows the Lord delivers those who
seek Him [v.16] and he needs the Lord to do that for him now [v.17].
Yes a mixture of testimony to the Lord's goodness [seen mostly
in verses 1-10] and David's need to experience it afresh [seen
in verses 11-17].
1: v.1-10: TESTIMONY
The Lord has saved David from a calamity
waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and
heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord
and put their trust in him.
The consequence of trusting the Lord alone
is the one
who trusts in the Lord,
who does not look to the proud,
to those who turn aside to false gods.
God has been highly active on David's behalf
Lord my God,
are the wonders you have done,
the things you planned for us.
None can compare with you;
were I to speak and tell of your deeds,
they would be too many to declare.
The Lord hadn't wanted lots of sacrifices
and offering you did not desire—
but my ears you have opened—
burnt offerings and sin offerings you
did not require.
(Implied) All he had wanted and found was David's obedience
I said, “Here I am, I have come—
it is written about me in the scroll.
desire to do your will, my God;
your law is within my heart.”
David had testified before all of the God's great goodness
proclaim your saving acts in the great assembly;
I do not seal my lips, Lord,
as you know.
do not hide your righteousness in my heart;
I speak of your faithfulness and your
I do not conceal your love and your faithfulness
from the great assembly.
2: v.11-17: Petition
Yet now David need His help
not withhold your mercy from me, Lord;
may your love and faithfulness always
troubles without number surround me;
my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot
They are more than the hairs of my head,
and my heart fails within me.
pleased to save me, Lord;
come quickly, Lord, to help me.
He needs help from those who would seek to pull him down
all who want to take my life
be put to shame and confusion;
may all who desire my ruin
be turned back in disgrace.
those who say to me, “Aha! Aha!”
be appalled at their own shame.
As a general principle those who seek God will be saved
may all who seek you
rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who long for your saving help always say,
“The Lord is great!”
David knows this but still awaits for it in the present circumstances
as for me, I am poor and needy;
may the Lord think of me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
you are my God, do not delay.
Thoughts: The writer to the Hebrews attributes verses
6 to 8 prophetically to Jesus – see Heb 10:5-10. David, being
a man after God's own heart, reflects the heart of the Son of
God prophetically in the midst of this song of testimony (v.1-10)and
petition (v.11-17) that reveals yet again David's trust in the
to Psa 41