I have trusted in you, O Lord
Psalm 31, 9-16
• Psalm 31 is an individual prayer for help from distress. The prayer as a whole is part of “taking refuge in the Lord”.
• We have used part of the psalm from v9 and opens with the set of words “Be gracious to me Lord” and has two types of trouble.
• V9-10 the trouble of self. He is in a bit of a state with himself, sorrowful to his belly, grief and sapped strength due to his affliction.
• V11=13 his trouble is with others – his adversaries. Again, he is in a sorry state with himself. He is disapproved of by his enemies and neighbours, people actively avoid him and he is like someone who has died and not remembered and those who do know of his existence want to kill him.
• V14-15 . He is asserting his trust in God. Fully and uncomplicated.
• V16. He is asking for deliverance from his enemies and the wicked. To be saved. (after reading this psalm, I’m not surprised)!
• The psalm in its entirety has been called a model prayer that is confident of being heard. Confidence in being led to safety and confidence in being heard.
• This confidence is not of the one saying it, but the one to whom the prayer is made.
• The psalm speaks to the Lord V5 as the element, the essential, the God who can be relied upon and believed in because he is true to himself and continues to be what he always has been, unchanging.
• Among the familiar expressions of trust used in the psalm, two are unique to this prayer.
• One sentence (v5), the sentiment and words are similar to those in Acts 7:59 (While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”
• This has been used by believers across the ages as a prayer with which to leave this earthly life of faith.
• In contrast of the psalm and Hebrew the sentence means something like ‘I entrust my life to your sovereign disposition’, a confession of ultimate helplessness, dependence and trust, a way of saying “Its up to you God what becomes of me and I am willing to have it so”.
• For what occasion was this prayer written?
• Generally, those seeking sanctuary at holy places from foes.
• When historically, it is hard to say, but psalm 31 is a prayer of a servant to the Lord who undergoes affliction because of his opponents and has connections to Jeremiah as these are similarities between the language of the psalm and the prophet and of course Jesus.
• Prophet and messiah. Both spiritual illustration of the identity of the servant who face opposition and commit their lives to the Lord.
• Example that through failure and death, the faithful God determines the times for his servants. And the psalm ends with the words of love, strength and courage in life and death through trust.
All-powerful, eternal God, You have chosen to give mankind a model of humility;
our Saviour took on our flesh, and subjected Himself to the Cross.
Grant us the grace to preserve faithfully the lessons
He has given us in his Passion and to have a share in His resurrection.
This we ask of You through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son.
The rest of the world, now, that’s a different matter.
But I trust you, as I trust the Sun to rise,
Feel free to hide.
Sometimes words fail us,
We cannot find the truth within.
Afraid, we feel unworthy,
Our need is overwhelming,
Crippled with self-doubt, words betray us,
But our hearts are as honest and true as the shining moon.
Fear not, I will always be here.
Sometimes I hide behind the clouds
But I will re-emerge to warm you,
Take heart, I would trust you with my life.