Psalm 63

Psalm 63
The Remnant’s Soul-thirst and Joy in God
Psalm 63. This Psalm presents to us the joy of communion with God. As another has said, “Psalm 61 is the cry of an overwhelmed soul; Psalm 62, the cry of a waiting soul: Psalm 63, the cry of the longing soul.”1 Psalm 63 is a Psalm of David, and the inscription states that it was written “when he was in the wilderness of Judah”. This probably refers to when David was fleeing from Absalom, away from the city of Jerusalem. Prophetically, this Psalm describes the expressions of the faithful remnant when hiding from Antichrist in the great tribulation. The faith of the remnant rises higher here than anywhere in their suffering. Although they are in great trial, there is not a word of complaint, and they are so occupied with God that they can actually rejoice and be satisfied! In fact, the faith rises so high here that it may be only fulfilled in Christ personally, the “root out of a dry ground” (Isa. 53:2).
A Psalm of David; when he was in the wilderness of Judah.
1 O God, thou art my GOD; early will I seek thee. My soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh languisheth for thee, in a dry and weary land without water:
2 To see thy power and thy glory, as I have beheld thee in the sanctuary;
3 For thy loving-kindness is better than life: my lips shall praise thee.
4 So will I bless thee while I live; I will lift up my hands in thy name.
5 My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips.
6 When I remember thee upon my bed, I meditate on thee in the night-watches:
7 For thou hast been my help, and in the shadow of thy wings will I sing for joy.
vv.1-7 A Soul-thirst and Joy in God. We find that the remnant has formed a personal relationship with God on an individual level; “O God, thou art my God”. This needs to be true of us as Christians as well! To seek after God means to desire to know Him better, and to walk in fellowship with Him. They confess that their soul is thirsting for God, which means that they have come to find a satisfaction in God that nothing else can replace. They want to see His power and glory, as they had in times past in the sanctuary. In v.3 we have an amazing expression of faith; the remnant has come to value God’s loving-kindness better than their own life! Their response is to bless and praise God as long as they live. It’s amazing that here in the wilderness they can speak of being satisfied with “marrow and fatness”. It is because they have come to know God and His character, and this is satisfying to the soul of the faithful. The thoughts of God even come to them upon their beds, when meditating at night. They can look back over the day and see how God has helped them, and sheltered them with His wings. The result is that they can sing for joy. This Psalm is beautiful because it describes how faith can sing in times of trial, because it rises up to the revealed character of God.
8 My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me.
9 But those that seek my soul, to destroy it, shall go into the lower parts of the earth;
10 They shall be given over to the power of the sword; they shall be the portion of foxes.
11 But the king shall rejoice in God; every one that sweareth by him shall glory: for the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped.
vv.8-11 The Portion of the Remnant and the Enemies. As a result of knowing God and following hard after Him, the remnant have confidence in God’s protection, “thy right hand upholdeth me”. The enemies who seek their soul to destroy it will end up in the grave. They will be killed by the sword and their bodies will be devoured by wild animals. But the king (David historically, but prophetic of Christ), and the remnant in association with Him, shall rejoice in God, and glorying in Him! The analog expression is in Rom. 5:2; “and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”
  1. Smith, H. The Psalms.
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