Summary: No matter how deep of a hole you find yourself in, if you have a relationship with God He will hear, He will find, and He will rescue you, though the victory may not be what you expect, it is accomplishing God's will
Psalm 18 is the longest Psalm we have dealt with so far at fifty verses. It appears to have been written by David (though some argue against this) at a time after his lengthy battles with enemies that surrounded Israel and Saul’s battle against him for the kingship. It really speaks to the Lord’s faithfulness in rescuing those that belong to Him. This Psalm, by the way, is repeated almost word for word in 2 Samuel 22 during a portion of Scripture that recounts David’s and David’s men and their achievements. Keep in mind as we look at God as warrior portions of this psalm that God came to be our Ultimate Action Hero, to fightt and defeat sin that was seeking to devour us!
1 – 3
Look how David begins: “I love You, Lord!” How many times do you just simply tell God that? The most important thing we have going for us is the love relationship we have with the Lord. Here, David is saying “Yahweh, I love you!”
Then he uses some very descriptive and poetic words to describe how God has shown His love for David: rock, fortress, mountain, shield and “the horn of my salvation” which means that God has the power to save like the powerful horn of an animal.
How God uses these metaphors is to provide strength, deliverance, refuge, and salvation.
David says he called on God and was saved. There many times in David’s life where God literally hid him away from Saul. David here is looking back. Individual battles or experiences were tough and sometimes in the midst we cannot see the hand of God moving powerfully. But it is good for us to look back sometimes and see a series of events where God has come through for us, and rejoice!
I’d like to read the whole next section together because it is really one beautiful picture of how David felt about the Lord rescuing him.
4 – 19
David paints the picture of being pulled under the waves (vs 16). If you have ever experienced this you know how frightening it can be. I remember as a teenager I was body surfing at The Wall, a beach in Southern California, and I started riding one particular wave and it was really large and took me and slammed me down on the ocean floor and held me there. I really thought this was it, I couldn’t move, I couldn’t breathe, and I couldn’t escape the ocean’s hold.
Sometimes that’s what it feels like when we have been overcome with tragedy, difficulty, and attack.
In very wonderful and picturesque speech David pictures the Lord hearing about David’s plight and coming in a dramatic and forceful way, piercing through the enemy to reach down and pull David up and rescue him “Because He delighted in me.” (vs 19)
We may feel that God couldn’t love us enough to get us out of this jam we are in. But if you have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ then you are His child. This reminds me of a parent that has discovered their child is in danger. Parents, you know how it feels—you will spare nothing in order to rescue your child.
There is no pit so dark that our God cannot see and rescue (vs 15 “the depths of the sea became visible, the foundations of the world were exposed.”)
No matter how powerful your enemy (vs 17) God is more powerful.
20 – 24
This section is why some think that David could not have written this himself but was most likely someone writing about David. Because David was far from perfect, just ask Uriah the Hittite or ask the thousands who died in a plague because of David’s census. But the idea of righteousness means either righteous or forgiven. David had blown it, but he had also repented and sought forgiveness by the Lord. These verses go along with 25 through 29. It is really all about God’s faithfulness and the fact that those who love God are loved by Him.
As a Christian, your righteousness doesn’t come from your obedience; it comes from your relationship with Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.
2 Corinthians 5:21 He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
David is saying I “have not turned from my God.” God repaid David because he had a relationship with Him, and God will come to your rescue because He knows you and you are His child!
25 – 29
Here we have two opposites compared: those that love God, and those that reject Him. The “faithful” of verse 25 refers to those who are in relationship with God. If you are loyal to God He is loyal to you—you are His family. We are blameless and pure because of the sacrifice of Jesus, or of the looking forward to the sacrifice of the Messiah, and so God deals with us on that basis.