Then the earth shook and quaked; the foundations of the heavens trembled; they were shaken because He burned with anger.
I. DISTRESS. This may arise from various causes; such as:
1. Enemies. As in David's case, with the dangers of the battles fought against them. There are many forms less extreme in which the enmity of men may show itself and occasion pain or peril.
2. Circumstances. Worldly losses and anxieties.
3. Personal affliction. Of body or mind. Special distress from afflictions which implicate the nerves, and so the mind itself.
4. Death of dear friends.
5. Conviction of sin. (See Psalm 32:3, 4.) It would be well if this form of distress were more common.
6. Pressure of powerful temptation. The mighty and threatening uprising of inward corruptions, or the pressing solicitations of evil from without.
7. Fear of calamities or of death.
II. PRAYER. Natural for men to call upon God when they are in great trouble or danger. Yet all do not; and of many the prayers are unacceptable, because they lack the moral and spiritual elements of successful prayer (see Hosea 7:14). Prayer, to be acceptable, must be:
1. That of a righteous man. (Vers. 21-25; James 5:16; Psalm 66:18.) Yet the prayers of one who is stirred by his affliction to sincere repentance will be heard; for repentance is the beginning of righteousness.
2. Offered in faith. (Matthew 21:22.)
3. Importunate and persevering. (Luke 11:8, seq.; Luke 18:1-8.)
4. Accompanied, where practicable, with the use of appropriate means. David fought vigorously as well as prayed earnestly.
III. DELIVERANCE. The Almighty heard the psalmist's voice "out of his temple" (equivalent to "the heavens"), and, interposing in majesty and power, delivered him, discomfiting and scattering his foes. True prayer is always heard and answered; but the deliverance granted is often not according to our conceptions and desires, yet ever according to the perfect wisdom and goodness of our heavenly Father. Sometimes the causes of our distress are removed; sometimes they are allowed to continue, but the distress is allayed, and the causes turned into blessings. So it was with St. Paul's "thorn in the flesh," although he prayed earnestly and repeatedly (2 Corinthians 12:8-10) Spiritual deliverance, however, is always granted to those who truly seek it; and ultimately complete rescue from all that afflicts the Christian.
IV. GRATEFUL REMEMBRANCE AND THANKSGIVING. Although David's victories were wrought through the skill and valour of himself and his troops, he gives to God all the glory of them; for he knew that all was due to him. His example will be followed by the Christian, as he reviews life and calls to mind his distresses and deliverances. He will recognize the hand of God in all, and render praise to him who both furnishes the means of deliverance and exercises the power which renders them successful. Finally, let none wait for trouble before they begin to pray. Live in the habit of prayer, and you will be able, when trouble comes, to pray truly and successfully. Otherwise you may find yourself in the miserable condition of those described in ver. 42, who "looked even unto the Lord, but he answered them not." - G.W.
And that bringeth me forth from mine enemies.
The Sciences as Sources of Illustration.Those meteoric stones, which sometimes fall to the earth, but which much more frequently, at certain seasons of the year, are seen shooting across the midnight sky, may also be fragments of the aforesaid world which has perished. These blocks of meteoric matter are flying through space, and when they get within the range of our atmosphere, there is an opposing medium, they have to drive through it at an enormous rapidity, and so they become burning hot, and thus they become visible. And, in like manner, I believe that there are plenty of good men in the world who are invisible till they get to be opposed, and being opposed, and having the love of God driving them on with tremendous momentum, they become red-hot with holy fervour, they overcome all opposition, and then they become visible to the eye of mankind. For my part, I rather like to pass through an opposing medium. I think that we all want to travel in that kind of atmosphere just to give us the sacred friction that will fully develop the powers with which we have been entrusted. If God has given us force, it is not at all a bad thing for us to be put where there is opposition, because we shall not be stopped by it, but shall by that very process be made to shine all the brighter as lights in the world.
(The Sciences as Sources of Illustration.).
TopicsAngry, Bases, Foundations, Heaven, Heavens, Moved, Quake, Quaked, Reeled, Rocked, Shake, Shaken, Shaking, Shock, Shook, Tremble, Trembled, Trembling, Troubled, Violent, Wrath, Wroth
Outline1. David's psalm of thanksgiving for God's deliverance and blessings
Dictionary of Bible Themes2 Samuel 22:8
8609 prayer, as praise and thanksgiving
LibraryDavid's Hymn of victory
'For Thou hast girded me with strength to battle: them that, rose up against me hast Thou subdued under me. 41. Thou hast also given me the necks of mine enemies, that I might destroy them that hate me. 42. They looked, but there was none to save; even unto the Lord, but He answered them not. 43. Then did I beat them as small as the dust of the earth, I did stamp them as the mire of the street, and did spread them abroad. 44. Thou also hast delivered me from the strivings of my people, Thou hast …
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