Summary: How did David make it through one of the darkest valleys of his life? By knowing that God was on his side!
GOD IS FOR ME!!
The 56th Psalm has somewhat of an interesting subscription to say the least. If you’ll notice just over verse #1 of this particular Psalm, we can gather that it was addressed to the chief musician. And then notice these words, “Upon Jonath-elem-rechokim,”. Most commentators agree that this is the title of this particular Psalm, as it has been translated, “The Silent Dove in Distant Places.” I believe that it will be made evident why that David entitled this Psalm as such throughout the course of the message tonight.
Another thing that interesting about the subscription over verse #1 is the fact that we see the words, “A Michtam of David.” In fact this is one of 5 Psalms that are identified as such in the Bible. And the word Michtam literally means to cut or to engrave. You see, the thought that David was trying to establish in the mind of the chief musician when he penned this particular Psalm was the fact that he wanted this to be a permanent writing. And of course we know that God must have agreed, because t has been eternally preserved in the Bible that you hold in your hand this morning.
The remaining portion of the subscription over verse #1 lets us know that David was led of the Lord to pen these words, when the Philistines took him to Gath. You’ll find by studying your Bible that those words have reference to David fleeing from King Saul for his life and while in his haste to do so, he ran right into the Philistines at a place called Gath. The king of Gath had put David under arrest and was under pressure from his advisers to put him to death. After all, this was the man that killed Goliath, several years earlier and what an opportunity for the Philistines here to do away with David all together. But my what an encouragement these verses of Scripture are, as we read of God’s protecting hand on David’s life. LET’S READ ABOUT IT TOGETHER (READ TEXT)
Now when you study your Bible, I believe that you’ll find that this the 56th Psalm is actually a twin Psalm to the 34th Psalm that God used David to pen as well. The 34th Psalm seems to have been written after David’s escape from the Philistine king, however the 56th Psalm seems to have been written while David was still in Gath, held as a prisoner in enemy hands. Of course this the 56th Psalm stands shoulder to shoulder with the preceding Psalm (55th Psalm) where we read of David’s troubles being caused by his family and his friends. But here in the 56th Psalm, David’s troubles are being caused by his foes. And my what trouble David was facing here in the 56th Psalm.
I can see David in my minds eye under lock and key in Gath, a prisoner in a foreign land, the home of the hereditary foes of his own people. His life at this point hangs in the balance. No doubt outside of his cell, the triumphant troops of the Philistines march up and down, gloating over their capture of the slayer of Goliath. Some of thus Philistine soldiers had lost brothers, sons, or friends in the battle that shortly followed at Elah, after David had killed Goliah. And now they have David in their hands. So what is David to do? At this point the had nowhere to go, but to the Lord. He had nowhere else to turn, but to the Lord.
But friend these verses of Scripture before us tonight teach us that when the Lord was all that David had. The Lord was all that David needed! John Phillips gives us a wonderful outline of this the 56th Psalm.
In verses 1-4 of this Psalm David declares that GOD IS MERCIFUL!
We not only see evidence of David’s Foes in verses 1-2, but we also see evidence of David’s faith in verses 3-4. And while considering those things, we certainly can gather along with the Psalmist that GOD IS MERCIFUL!
In verses 12-13, David declares that GOD IS MIGHTY!
And that thought not only made David, Happy in His Soul in verse #12, but it also made David, Heedful of his steps. And again while considering those truths we most certainly can gather that GOD IS MIGHTY.
But what I specifically felt led of the Lord to do this evening, was to call your attention if I may to verses 5-11 of this Psalm, where David declares that GOD IS MINDFUL.
The Lord was not only mindful of David’s TRUST in verses 10-11. The Lord was not only mindful of David’s TRIALS in verses 5-7, but the Lord was also mindful of David’s TEARS in verses 8-9. In fact notice again if you would please what David had to say about his tears in verses 8-9. He said,