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FRAMEWORKS: Psalm 57: A Song from a Cave of Refuge


For the director of music. To the tune of “Do Not Destroy.” Of David. A miktam. When he had fled from Saul into the cave.


[Preliminary Comments: Yet another historically based psalm – see 1 Sam 22 – the cave probably being the cave of Adullam. It is easy to read the historical accounts of what happened to David in the second half of 1 Samuel, but his writings reveal the angui9sh he felt when he was on the run from the king. He is a man who turns to the Lord in a crisis [v.1] knowing the Lord will be there for him [v.2,3]. There are those who are out to get him [v.4] but he determines the Lord will be glorified in all this [v.5] with his enemy bringing himself down [v.6]. He, in the meantime, will remain true to the Lord [v.7] and will sing and praise the Lord [v.8] and testify of His goodness [implied] to the whole world [v.9], secure in God's love [v.10] who he desires to be exalted above all. [v.11] Again a psalm in a time of trouble which yet reveals David's faith and strength of relationship with the Lord.]



v.1 David seeks the Lord for refuge, for protection, from those who are against him


v.1  Have mercy on me, my God, have mercy on me,
     for in you I take refuge.
I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings
     until the disaster has passed.


v.2 He is sure the Lord will defend and justify him [against those enemies]


v.2  I cry out to God Most High,
     to God, who vindicates me.

v.3 The Lord's love & faithfulness upholds him


v.3  He sends from heaven and saves me,
     rebuking those who hotly pursue me—
     God sends forth his love and his faithfulness.


v.4 In the land there are those who would seek to destroy him


v.4  I am in the midst of lions;
     I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts—
men whose teeth are spears and arrows,
     whose tongues are sharp swords.


v.5 He turns to glorify the Lord – he wants His name honoured


v.5  Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
     let your glory be over all the earth.


v.6 Although his enemy sought to bring him down, it rebounded on them and they fell


v.6  They spread a net for my feet—
     I was bowed down in distress.
They dug a pit in my path—
     but they have fallen into it themselves.


v.7 He determines to remain unwavering in his faith


v.7  My heart, O God, is steadfast,
     my heart is steadfast;
     I will sing and make music.

v.8 He stirs himself up to sing and praise the Lord first thing every day


v.8  Awake, my soul!
     Awake, harp and lyre!
     I will awaken the dawn.


v.9 He will sing and testify to the Lord before all peoples


v.9  I will praise you, Lord, among the nations;
     I will sing of you among the peoples.


v.10 He is secure in God's love for him

v.10  For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
     your faithfulness reaches to the skies.


v.11 Thus he wants the Lord to be rightly exalted over all else.


v.11  Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
     let your glory be over all the earth.



[Additional Thoughts: Note how David describes the Lord: his refuge [v.1], the One who will vindicate him [v.2], who saves him [v.3], the One to be exalted [v.5,11], the One worthy of praise [v.9], whose love and faithful is immense [v.10]. It may be about David's troubles and anguish but it is even more about the wonder of the Lord.]



Continue to Psa 58