They come out at night, snarling like vicious dogs as they prowl the streets. Listen to the filth that comes from their mouths; their words cut like swords. “After all, who can hear us?” they sneer. But Lord , you laugh at them. You scoff at all the hostile nations. You are my strength; I wait for you to rescue me, for you, O God, are my fortress. In his unfailing love, my God will stand with me. He will let me look down in triumph on all my enemies. Don’t kill them, for my people soon forget such lessons; stagger them with your power, and bring them to their knees, O Lord our shield. Because of the sinful things they say, because of the evil that is on their lips, let them be captured by their pride, their curses, and their lies. Destroy them in your anger! Wipe them out completely! Then the whole world will know that God reigns in Israel. Interlude
My enemies come out at night, snarling like vicious dogs as they prowl the streets. They scavenge for food but go to sleep unsatisfied. But as for me, I will sing about your power. Each morning I will sing with joy about your unfailing love. For you have been my refuge, a place of safety when I am in distress. O my Strength, to you I sing praises, for you, O God, are my refuge, the God who shows me unfailing love.
It is believed, as indicated in its title , Psalm 59 was written to describe the time “when Saul sent agents to watch the house and kill him.” David writes this psalm under the stress of this life threatening circumstances.
1 Samuel 19:11-18 NLT Then Saul sent troops to watch David’s house. They were told to kill David when he came out the next morning. But Michal, David’s wife, warned him, “If you don’t escape tonight, you will be dead by morning.” So she helped him climb out through a window, and he fled and escaped. Then she took an idol and put it in his bed, covered it with blankets, and put a cushion of goat’s hair at its head. When the troops came to arrest David, she told them he was sick and couldn’t get out of bed. But Saul sent the troops back to get David. He ordered, “Bring him to me in his bed so I can kill him!” But when they came to carry David out, they discovered that it was only an idol in the bed with a cushion of goat’s hair at its head. “Why have you betrayed me like this and let my enemy escape?” Saul demanded of Michal. “I had to,” Michal replied. “He threatened to kill me if I didn’t help him.” So David escaped and went to Ramah to see Samuel, and he told him all that Saul had done to him. Then Samuel took David with him to live at Naioth.
God, the Deliverer
David begins with a plea for deliverance. He asks for help using three different words in four places in the first two verses.
Psalms 59:1-2 NLT Rescue me from my enemies, O God. Protect me from those who have come to destroy me. Rescue me from these criminals; save me from these murderers. (emphasis mine).
He is asking for deliverance from men who are intent on killing him. h
He asks God to take a look at what's happening to him. They have set an ambush. They are stalking him. They are planning attacks against him.
They are doing all this even though he is innocent. He hasn't done anything to Saul. He hasn't done anything deserving death.
David then asks God to punish not only these men but all the enemies of Israel.
Psalms 59:5 NLT O Lord God of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, wake up and punish those hostile nations. Show no mercy to wicked traitors. Interlude
He tells God what he wants to happen to his enemies..
This can be an example for us to not be afraid of telling the Lord what outcome outcome that we want. We should avoid generalities and tell God what the problem is and what we think would be the best solution. Then leave it in His hands, and His wisdom to work on our behalf.
Romans 8:28 NLT And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
David describes the attacks against him. His enemies are just like a pack of dogs. Anyone attacked by a pack of dogs would certainly feel threatened because a pack of snarling dogs appears ready to attack at any time. This attack was not just physically threatening, but also verbal.
Psalms 59:7 NLT Listen to the filth that comes from their mouths; their words cut like swords. “After all, who can hear us?” they sneer.
The pain inflicted from sharp words can be so severe that it seems more painful than dying. Our words can comfort and heal. But our words can also bring great pain. We also see the arrogance of these people because they say, “who can hear us?” They think they can say whatever they like, believing they will get away with their verbal attacks. We would not say the evil things we say about people if we didn’t think that we could get away with it. We always assume that we won’t be held accountable for our words. We assume that the person we are speaking evil about will never know. So in our arrogance we destroy friendships, relationships, and any trust that could exist between people.
Colossians 4:6 NLT Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.
As David said God does hear. He hears and laughs at those people who use their tongues to harm you.
Psalms 59:8 NLT But Lord , you laugh at them. You scoff at all the hostile nations.
The picture is God shaking His head at our foolishness.
Matthew 12:36-37 NLT And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.”
Starting in verse 9 starts to talk about his confidence and expectations.
Psalms 59:9 NLTYou are my strength; I wait for you to rescue me, for you, O God, are my fortress.
David doesn't ask that God kill his enemies but to crush them. He is not asking for revenge, but he wants them to be made examples. He does not want the people to forget what happens to those who act with such evil. David wants them to be caught in their lies and brought down in their pride. David calls for the judgment be done in a process so that the people would see and learn about God’s justice. The point of judgment is to let the earth know, but especially God’s people, that God rules.
Psalms 59:13 NLT Destroy them in your anger! Wipe them out completely! Then the whole world will know that God reigns in Israel.
Watch your words, you will be judged by them. God hears our prayers. God knows our hearts.
There is great pain in the midst of our trials. It is hard to do what is right when people commit evil against us. God knows our hearts, humans do not. Even when people judge us improperly, we can stand before God knowing that God is able to see our motives and see our hearts.
God defends our cause. David had confidence that God will stand behind him and give him assistance because God has done it in the past.
We are able to get through hard times, by reminding ourselves that God has helped in the past.