Psalm 144

Psalm 144

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My Rock and My Fortress

Of David.

144   Blessed be the LORD, my rock,
    who trains my hands for war,
    and my fingers for battle;
  he is my steadfast love and my fortress,
    my stronghold and my deliverer,
  my shield and he in whom I take refuge,
    who subdues peoples under me.
  O LORD, what is man that you regard him,
    or the son of man that you think of him?
  Man is like a breath;
    his days are like a passing shadow.
  Bow your heavens, O LORD, and come down!
    Touch the mountains so that they smoke!
  Flash forth the lightning and scatter them;
    send out your arrows and rout them!
  Stretch out your hand from on high;
    rescue me and deliver me from the many waters,
    from the hand of foreigners,
  whose mouths speak lies
    and whose right hand is a right hand of falsehood.
  I will sing a new song to you, O God;
    upon a ten-stringed harp I will play to you,
  who gives victory to kings,
    who rescues David his servant from the cruel sword.
  Rescue me and deliver me
    from the hand of foreigners,
  whose mouths speak lies
    and whose right hand is a right hand of falsehood.
  May our sons in their youth
    be like plants full grown,
  our daughters like corner pillars
    cut for the structure of a palace;
  may our granaries be full,
    providing all kinds of produce;
  may our sheep bring forth thousands
    and ten thousands in our fields;
  may our cattle be heavy with young,
    suffering no mishap or failure in bearing;
  may there be no cry of distress in our streets!
  Blessed are the people to whom such blessings fall!
    Blessed are the people whose God is the LORD!

(ESV)


Psalm 144 Commentary

by Hank Workman

Spiritual warfare is part of our daily lives.  As Believers in Jesus, when we made our allegiance to Him, the enemy put a bounty on our head.  He is out to kill and destroy.  He is out to bring down anyone who is a genuine Follower. This war that is in the heavenlies (Ephesians 6) affects our daily lives every single day.  Tangibly on earth, he uses others not committed to Jesus to bring about his desired destruction.  His ruthlessness knows no bounds.  His relenting does not cease.  The enemy of our souls wages war against God’s Followers and has done so since the Garden.

Yet, we are not alone.  We have the victor in the battle on our side.  We have the One who conquered death and destruction and even right now is interceding to the Father on our behalf.  Our Captain, our Jesus, is right beside in all the battles of which we face.

And because of that, He uses and offers whatever He must prepare us for such battles.  Each who are Believers in Jesus are in training.  Yes, even right now through the way of life, the way of our journey, He is using aspects of this to equip us to take the land, stand firm, have a holy resolve to not give up or give in.

Although David more than likely was speaking of God training his hands for physical war there is such truth to be grasped in the opening of Psalm 144.  David was a remarkable warrior.  He battled many in hand-to-hand combat and used wisdom given by God again and again in his tactics.  As then, so is now for those in the armed forces, training was essential for success.

As was the case then of the physical training David underwent with his weapons of war, he knew God was the one training him.  As Believers, our weapon is the Sword of the Spirit.  This weapon is our defense against the enemies lies, tactics and attacks.  There is not a day that should go by where we don’t pick up our Sword, the Word of God, and use it throughout.   Our training, the training by God as David would pen, “trains our hands for war, fingers for battle” requires the very powerful Word of God to be held firmly in our hands as it has been placed in our heart for that day.

God’s loving-kindness, His being our Fortress and Deliver, our Shield;  all words used when considering a battle, is the very character of God we can cling to.  When we continue to undergo training of Him, these aspects of God become present in our lives.  These are the aspects of God that bring determination and hope for the victory.  These are the places we can take cover in because they are impenetrable aspects of God and what He brings.

We are in training.  God is directing us each and every day.  Let us be diligent in following the way he prepares us.


Psalm 144 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

David is physically and emotionally spent. He pleads with God to be rescued. This is a common and consistent theme in the Psalms. However, it’s also very relevant because we also struggle physically and emotionally.

Even with the advanced state of science and medical technology, we are struck down by disease, infections, cancer, and all kinds of daily aches and pains. On top of that, we are finite beings. It is a certain end for us physically speaking and we could literally leave this life at any moment.

Emotionally, we all struggle. All it really takes is one bad relationship or experience to leave a lifetime of pain. The recovery can be brutal. The treatment can only be spiritual. However, despite these physical and emotional shortcomings, we are still used in powerful ways to display Christ’s glory and bring his message to those in need.

It’s not a coincidence that we are given the analogy of a clay pot to describe our place in God’s kingdom.

Now we have this treasure in clay jars, so that this extraordinary power may be from God and not from us.  8  We are pressured in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair;  9  we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed.  10  We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

2 Corinthians 4:7-10 HCSB

Earthenware was formed in a potter’s hand, every detail imprinted by the hands of the maker. The resulting clay sculpture turns out to be exactly what the creator had wanted. If not, he simply puts it back on the spinning wheel and begins to form it to what he needs it to be.

After the clay is formed, what good is it for holding soup or for growing a plant? In its current form, it’s just soft clay. You can try and put soup in it, but it will not serve that purpose very well. What has to happen to the clay before it’s able to be used for the purpose it was created for? It has to be put into the fire.

There are some things that can only be learned in the fiery furnace. The misunderstanding of the Christian life is that if you are this super spiritual person, then you will experience victory in all phases of life. That was definitely not the case with David or the early church.

“…at the Nicene Council, an important church meeting in the 4th century A.D., of the 318 delegates attending, fewer than 12 had not lost an eye or lost a hand or did not limp on a leg lamed by torture for their Christian faith.”

Vance Havner

Jesus has proven that physical persecution and suffering result in spiritual growth and maturity. There are some people that completely resist and reject this kind of growth and assume it isn’t supposed to happen. Persecution and suffering are going to find you whether you trust in Jesus or not. Through the promises offered by God, believers can embrace suffering instead of rejecting it.

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