August 20th, 2020 – Psalm 39:7

Verse of the Day Devotion: Psalm 39:7  And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.

This is another psalm of David.  He starts in verse one by saying he will watch out how he speaks to his enemies.  “I said, I will guard my ways That I may not sin with my tongue; I will guard my mouth as with a muzzle While the wicked are in my presence. I was mute and silent, I refrained even from good, And my sorrow grew worse.” Psalm 39:1-2.  He chooses to be careful in what he says to his enemies.  Not necessarily because of their reactions, but because he did not want to sin because of his words and actions.  Then in verse three he alludes to the feelings of anger and intense excitement of his emotions that came upon him.  “My heart was hot within me, While I was musing the fire burned; Then I spoke with my tongue” Psalm 39:3.  His emotions were rising within him, endeavoring to come out. 

In this situation, it seems David wearied of his life.  In verses 4-6, he is looking at the brevity, or shortness of life here on earth.  First, he asks God how long must he stay here. “LORD, make me to know my end And what is the extent of my days; Let me know how transient I am.” Psalm 39:4.  Then he says that our lives are short, which is the idea of handbreadth, speaking of the short span when our four fingers are spread apart.  God is eternal, and his short life is nothing in comparison.  Then he adds that compared to eternity our lives are like a single breath.  “Surely every man walks about as a phantom; Surely they make an uproar for nothing; He amasses riches and does not know who will gather them.”  Psalm 39:6.  And because of this, our lives are vain as we amass riches and wealth, but in a short time we die and have it no more.”

And so, because life is short, we come to our focus verse.  “And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.” Psalm 39:7.  He in essence is saying, in this life, I will place my reliance in you and what you bring about and make happen.  It is not the world he must rely on, or his own means, for it is not in his power to solve the mysteries in this life, and in reality he knows he does not have the wisdom or knowledge to make a positive difference.  And neither do we.  The theologian Albert Barnes in his commentary on psalms puts it this way.  “it is in the God that made all, the Ruler over all, that can control all, and that can accomplish His own great purposes in connection even with these moving shadows, and that can confer on man thus vain in himself and in his pursuits that which will be valuable and permanent.” We can do nothing; we must rely on God to do everything.  We must not contemplate on what the world can do to meet our needs, desires, or in bringing of peace to us.  We must rely on God in all things.  For only then can we find ourselves content, for He alone can bring it to us and help us through.  The world can only fail in this goal and exacerbate the issue.  God loves us, He is always with us.  And He will help us.  “The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace  Because he trusts in You.” Isaiah 26:3.

I encourage everyone reading this to trust completely in God who can do everything and loves us with an unending love.  We may feel helpless, however, we have nothing to be concerned about, because, He has this.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries. 

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