Psalms Chapter 16

Psalms Chapter 16 (Unless otherwise cited all scripture in this devotional is from the King James Version. I use this version because many people prefer to study from this specific version.)

Context: God I Know That You Will Always Stand With Me

Once again David finds himself in trouble and laments/prays for deliverance. He knows that he will be delivered. His faith in God is never wavering even when he is faced with the possibility of death. His trust in God remains resolute! So, I would consider this to be more of a Psalm of Confidence than a lament. Oh, that we could be so robust in our trust of Him!

Oh God Please Keep Me from Harm.

1(Michtam of David.) Preserve me, O God: for in thee do I put my trust.

Cayce offers a definition of Michtam: “Michtam means engraving, or a poem.”

In the first part of this verse, David asks God to preserve/protect him maybe even in the same way that David protected his sheep from the wild animals. But the second half of this verse shows the perfect trust that David has in the Lord. Today Christians look to Jesus as their Shepherd/Protector. Why? Jesus watches over us and keeps us from harm. 2 Timothy 4:18 “And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve [me] unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom [be] glory for ever and ever. Amen.”

2O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee;

This verse is crucial for us to understand what David is voicing within the proper context. I appreciate the Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges explanation of this verse:

Verse 2: (You can access a copy of the Massoretic Text here.) The Masoretic Text reads thou (fem.) hast said, assuming that the poet holds colloquy with himself, and addresses his soul, as in Psalm 42:5Lamentations 3:24 (a passage evidently based on this psalm). So the Targum. But an ellipse of O my soul cannot be grammatically justified; and R.V. is certainly right in reading I have said, with LXX, Vulg=Vulgate., Syr., Jer. Cp. Psalm 31:14Psalm 91:2Psalm 140:6my Lord] The confession of Jehovah’s servant (cp. Psalm 35:23), in contrast to the self-asserting independence of Psalm 12:4. R.V. marg. the Lord is possible, but less satisfactory. My goodness extendeth not to thee] Render with R.V.,

The Simplest Explanation of this verse . 

I have no good beyond thee. “Not merely is God the source of all his weal, but everything which he recognises as a true good, God actually contains within Himself” (Robertson Smith). Cp. Psalm 73:25. The P.B.V. my goods are nothing unto thee (cp. Psalm 50:9 ff.) follows LXX and Vulg., τῶν ἀγαθῶν μου οὐ χρείαν ἔχειςbonorum meorum non eges

What does this mean for us today? There is nothing that is good in my life that comes from me or any other human being. Everything that is good that is worth anything that is good is a gift to me from God because He is the embodiment of all that is good. I can be the best me that I can be. We can use “religious” words to justify our behavior whether good or bad, and it will not stand up to God’s yardstick of righteousness. No human being has the right to use the “three strikes,” and you are out mentality with any other human being. Why? Because God does not do that to us. I know that the previous statement may be considered curt, but it is not meant to be curt.

We must remember that it is not within the heart of man to be “good.” Jesus told the Pharisees not to call Him “good.” So, we should be willing to accept the weaknesses of others.

There are many things that I will ignore in human behavior. The one thing that I do not function well with is any situation that poses a danger to others or falsehood. It hurts the person saying it and the person receiving it. Thank God He calls us His righteousness.

3But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight. 5The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.

If you remember in Psalm 15, David says no one on earth was righteous or holy. Here he reverses himself because his confidence in God grew toward the end of Psalm 15. The saints and the excellent refers to the righteous people of God.

Look at what God thinks about his people who are living their lives in a righteous manner, adhering to His commandments. People who are also living according to the commandment of love that Christ left for us to follow.Isaiah 62:4 “Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah: for the Lord delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married.”

First of all, what does Hephzibah mean? Hephzibah my delight is in her.[God delights in His saints!] A symbolical name of Zion, as representing the Lord’s favour toward her ( Isaiah 62:4 ). You are loved and a favored by God Almighty the Creator of the universe. How about that? It doesn’t matter what people say about you. It doesn’t matter that you have areas where He is still working on you. It does not matter that gossip, lies, and innuendoes proceed you – that is what was happening to David, remember? Just remember that “…they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:31).  Verse 5 continues this frame of thought. God is David’s “everything!” Can we say that today? How many things do we have that distract us and prevent us from spending time with our all-in-all?

New Testament scriptures to cement this thought.

  • Galatians 3:29 “And if ye [be] Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
  • Galatians 5:24 “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.”
  • This is the end result of God being our all in all. The end result of us putting Him first and not our own peeves and our feelings. Feelings will lead us to make decisions that we live to regret.

6The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.

Revelation 3:5 “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.” Do I hear an AMEN? This verse says it all for me. Living a life that serves God and the least of these means loving as God loves. He has not throw away people. His plan is that all will be saved.

Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god: their drink offerings of blood will I not offer, nor take up their names into my lips.

 I love the parallelisms that David uses in this Psalm. On the opposite side of the fence are those who “hasten [run]after another [other] god(s). Now we know that numerous Scriptures that address this abhorrent evil. People state that this does not apply to Christians today.  Paul addressed this issue when the church started.

The church started in Acts by the way not when Constantine and Pope Leo determined that they would make Christianity a worldwide religion. Let’s read what James told Paul to tell the Gentiles who were now members of what was initially a Messianic Christian Church

Acts 21:25 “As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written [and] concluded that they observe no such thing, [What things? Observing the Jewish traditions that were in place in the New Christian Church established in Jerusalem after Christ was resurrected.] [What were they supposed to do then? Save only that they keep themselves from [things] offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled [part of a ritual that pagan did when they offered meat to idols, and from fornication.” The first commandment of the Ten Commandments addressed this behavior.

  • Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”
  • Exodus 20:4 “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness [of any thing] that [is] in heaven above, or that [is] in the earth beneath, or that [is] in the water under the earth:”
  • Exodus 20:5 “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God [am] a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth [generation] of them that hate me;”
  • Exodus 20:7 “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.”
  • Exodus 23:13 “And in all [things] that I have said unto you be circumspect: and make no mention of the name of other gods, neither let it be heard out of thy mouth.”

Ok, so I hear you saying “It’s 2018 no one does that stuff anymore!” True! But we have more subtle Gods. How about the God of our position? When one feels that their ‘title,” “position,” place in the hierarchy of an organization, social standing, etc., is threatened what happens? They protect it at all cost! Those things have become our Gods. OK, let’s look at basics.

  1. How about our prized possessions?
  2. The kind and or type of car that we drive?
  3. The kind of house that we live in?
  4. Or even the many homes that we own?
  5. Our 70″ TV? The numerous electronic devices that we own. Some folks cannot afford cable, but they must get the latest and greatest iPhone as soon as it comes out. Not that I think TV is the best way to spend one’s time. I am giving examples of what things we use to replace God.
  6. I know that there are people who live in their Bibles. Why? So, they can gain another position, put another notch on their church service belts. Sometimes having done so it is still not enough.
  7. There are those of us who serve because we want people to know that we are serving! Is it possible for us to make volunteering – anywhere – our God? Yes, if the service becomes more important than the people who are being served. I do not want to beat this dead horse anymore. But there are times when we gloss over scriptures like these because we cannot make then relevant to our current times.

I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. 

David has learned to trust in the Lord with all of his heart. He takes his counsel from His word. Psalm 32:8 I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. I learned many years ago that the only way to stay within my “spiritual” lane is to know when God is prompting me to move. God did not leave his children without counsel today. John 14:26 “But the Comforter, [which is] the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” What? When did this happen?

Acts 2: The Day The Church Of The Living God Began!

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

I am not going to address the meaning of speaking in tongues. The point here that is most important is that every called out member of God’s Holy Church has the Holy Spirit within them. They have direct contact with God the Father. Matthew 27:51″ And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent.” This was when it happened.  We have that same contact with God that David had. Can you imagine?

Just talking to God as if He is your friend? Well, that is what the Bible says we are! John 15:15 New International Version  Jesus Said, ” I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”

8 I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. 

Wednesday morning the Lord spoke this to me as clear as day. 1 John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

Secondly, What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us.” (Romans 8:31). Because David knew that God was for him he wrote;

Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.” 

David rejoiced in the faith that he had in God. He did not live in fear and or dread of people. Neither should we.

Be aware of people who tell you that God has told them to do something to you that will destroy you emotionally! Trust me that did not come from God. Fear and intimidation are not of God!

When one is strong in the Lord, they do not live fearful lives. Paul was not the least bit concerned about the heretics who were after him. He was worried about what they would do to his flock. That is why every letter that he wrote was written. People with their own gospel were going after the freedom that the people had in Christ.

Back to David! He knew who his Redeemer was. He had a warrior king who loved him with an everlasting love-not a sometimes if you are like me I will love you love-but an eternal love. Just look at verse 10.

10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

David is speaking prophetically about the body of Christ! 

Acts 2:25-28  “For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope:  Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.” 

Also, Acts 13:35 Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.”

Yes, the Holy Spirit revealed to David what would happen to Christ. But, does this statement apply to anyone else? 1 Thessalonians 4:16 “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:”  This is speaking about us. We will not rot in a grave and be lost forever. Neither will we be waiting somewhere pleading for God to come and get us! Then David once again speaks to the end of our human story and the beginning of our eternal life story. 

Verse 11Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. Matthew 25:34 “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:” If you think that you have experienced joy on this earth then you really don’t know what heavenly joy is in store for you. I cannot even begin to fathom it. All I know is that the nit-picking, negativity that is presently pervading society – even the body of Christ – will end. Then Glory Be! Everlasting Joy will begin!


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