Theme: A Confident Cry for Deliverance
In this week’s studies we learn how David overcame his adversaries by committing himself into the Lord’s protection.
Scripture: Psalm 3:1-8
The last section of the psalm is a confident cry for God’s deliverance, because the psalmist knows that God has heard him and will provide deliverance.
David’s words are actually a war cry, as I suggested earlier. This is because in Numbers 10:35-36 we are told that when the hosts of Israel broke camp, it was because the cloud of the Lord, which normally rested over the Ark of the Covenant in the midst of the camp, rose up and went before them. Then Moses would cry, “Rise up, O Lord! May your enemies be scattered; may your foes flee before you.” When the cloud came to rest, Moses said, “Return, O Lord, to the countless thousands of Israel.”
Regardless of the speaker, the words, “Rise up, O Lord” always carried this connotation. So when David said them it was a victorious call to battle, knowing that the Lord was going before him and would give him the victory.
And God did! God caused Absalom to listen to bad advice and thus fail to pursue and defeat his father when he was most vulnerable. Thus, when the battle was finally engaged, after David had been able to gather strength and prepare for it, David’s troops achieved a great victory. It took place in the forest of Ephraim, where twenty thousand men were killed, including Absalom.
The final verse of Psalm 3 contains a great testimonial–“From the Lord comes deliverance”–followed by a blessing. The testimonial reminds us of Jonah 2:9, which reads, “Salvation comes from the Lord.” It is what Charles Spurgeon called “the sum and substance of [true or] Calvinistic doctrine.” Spurgeon said, “Search the Scripture through, and you must, if you read it with a candid mind, be persuaded that the doctrine of salvation by grace alone is the great doctrine of the Word of God…This is the great point concerning which we are daily fighting. Our opponents say, ‘Salvation belongeth to the free will of man; if not to man’s merit, yet at least to man’s will.’ But we hold and teach that salvation from first to last, in every iota of it, belongs to the Most High God. It is God that chooses his people. He calls them by his grace; he quickens them by his Spirit, and keeps them by his power. It is not of man, neither by man: ‘not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy.”10
That is all quite true, of course. God is indeed the author of salvation from beginning to end. If he were not, no one would be saved. Neither you nor I. “Salvation is of the Lord.” But if that is true–if God has saved you in this great matter of salvation–why should you tremble before the lesser, physical dangers of this life? You should triumph by faith in God, as King David did.
From the study, how do we know that David’s cry is a war cry?
How does knowing that salvation is of the Lord from beginning to end help us in our daily afflictions?
Reflection: What does a confident cry for deliverance look like?
Key Point: “Salvation is of the Lord.” But if that is true–if God has saved you in this great matter of salvation–why should you tremble before the lesser, physical dangers of this life? You should triumph by faith in God, as King David did.
For Further Study: The Minor Prophets also describe how the Lord fights for his people. Download and listen for free to James Boice’s message, “Deliverance in Zion.” (Discount will be applied at checkout.)
10C. H. Spurgeon, The Treasury of David, vol. la, Psalms 1-26 (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1968), p. 24.