Chief musician (Choir director): This tells us that this psalm was chanted or sung at the temple for corporate worship.
· Flutes: Nobody knows exactly what kind of instrument this is, but it has been interpreted ‘flutes’ here. It’s written in the plural, so could be referring to many strings, or many keys or many holes (as for a wind-based instrument) – or it could simply mean many instruments to be played together.
This Psalm is for people who want to be mature followers, mature servants, of the Living G-d.
v1-2: Give ear…consider…give heed: Three different words are used for listening or hearing. Listening is not passive. The listener is very much a part of the whole conversation, and is, actually, actively involved in the whole process – even though he/she may remain quiet.
· ‘Give ear’ – David wants G-d to hear him. If we want others to hear us we need to go closer to them. This is David’s cry – he wants to draw close to G-d, he wants G-d to be a part of his life.
· ‘Consider’: Perceive. In a good relationship, after hearing what someone has said, there needs to be cognitive understanding of what has been spoken (even to go so far as understanding what hasn’t been spoken but is underlying in the conversation).
· ‘Give heed’: David is inviting G-d to step into his life and act on what has been said and understood.
· King: Ruler. David is coming to G-d with a submissive attitude. He puts everything he is going to say and everything that is unspoken (his sub conscious) under G-d’s authority.
· G-d: The term used here in Hebrew is a word acknowledging G-d as judge. David, acknowledges that G-d is going to judge his words (Matt 12:36-37).
· For to You I will pray: David is desiring a response from G-d. When we pray we are taking our requests before G-d so that He can answer -according to His will (Phil 4:6).
v3: Morning is related, in an interpretive sense, to light. Something transparent/visible. David believes that G-d is going to act/respond.
· Direct: David is not flippant with his prayers. There is an administration or arrangement of them. He carefully and thoughtfully lays them out before G-d -with intent and purpose.
· I will look up: I will expect. David, after praying prayers in this way, waits with expectation for G-d to move. Something to consider: We will not have an effective prayer life unless we cognitively arrange our prayers in light of Biblical truth.
v4: A Biblical definition of evil is this: anything that is in conflict with the will of G-d. Something that is evil in G-d’s eyes might not seem evil in our eyes. A silly example but makes the point: if it is the will of G-d for you to give $100 to your enemy but you decide you would rather give it to your neighbour you have done evil in G-d’s eyes. You think you have done well because you gave that money, but He thinks you have done evil because that was not who He asked
give the money to. So…G-d doesn’t like anything wicked or anything against His will. Neither should we.
v5: The boastful (& workers of iniquity) shall not stand – those who are corrupt (in spiritual decay) are going to be unstable. They will not be able to go into G-d’s presence (in His sight). They won’t be able to hold their lives together.
v6: Falsehood: Those who tell lies are going to fall apart and come to an end.
· ‘Abhors’ is a strong word that means these things (the shedding of innocent blood, as well as those who tell lies etc) are an abomination to G-d.
v7: This verse is another example of parallelism (//). House//Temple. Mercy (Grace)//Fear.
What we learn from this is this: The abundance of G-d’s grace produces a walk (a lifestyle) of the fear of G-d (giving Him priority in everything). Grace is not a licence to keep sinning.
· I will come//I will worship: The reason we approach G-d is to worship Him. David places himself in a position whereby he is able to worship G-d. Mercy (grace) produces a desire for obedience. If we are not interested in obeying G-d then we are not a candidate for His grace. We can never obey G-d without His grace, but we will never be a true recipient of His grace until we desire to obey Him.
v8: It is only when we are a recipient of G-d’s grace, it’s only when we want to worship Him, it’s only when we are walking in His fear that we can ask G-d to lead us in righteousness.
· When G-d leads us in righteousness we are able to triumph over our enemies.
· Too often we pray for our own ways and own things. David wants to know what G-d’s way is so that he can rather walk in that.
v9: This verse could be speaking about our enemies.
· No faithfulness – no truth, nothing correct on his tongue/in his mouth.
· The very essence of them is disastrous, catastrophic.
· The throat – words come out of the throat. The words that form in this person’s throat have a horrible stench to them.
· They flatter – they speak slippery (maybe even eloquent) words.
When we don’t speak that which is correct/that which is truth it’s going to bring about destruction.
v10: This term for G-d again speaks of G-d as judge. Those who do not walk in G-d’s ways are going to be judged for their poor counsel (both the counsel they give, as well as for the counsel they receive and act upon). Poor counsel, which is counsel that is in rebellion to G-d’s ways, leads to abundant sin.
When we do not speak or live in a way which is correct/true (living IN Messiah) we are going to be guilty before G-d and are going to be driven away.
v11: But – a word of contrast
· Trust: A word for taking refuge in or taking cover under.
· Shout, in this context, is a term of praise.
· Love Your name – name is synonymous with character. This is speaking about those who love the very character of G-d and want to emulate it in their own lives.
v12: The righteous ones walk in the character and truth (Word) of G-d. These are the ones who are blessed by G-d.
· Shield: A military term. G-d surrounds the righteous with His protection. He moves to protect us from those things that attack the will of G-d in our lives. If we are walking in our own ways, against the purposes of G-d, we cannot expect G-d to be our defence.