Psalm 27:1-14


jehovah-Exodus
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Psalm 27

1The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

2When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.

3Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.

4One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.

5For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.

6And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.

7Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.

8When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.

9Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.

10When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up.

11Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.

12Deliver me not over unto the will of mine enemies: for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty.

13I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.

14Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.

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PSALM 27

A Psalm of David.

  1. jehovah is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? jehovah is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?
  2. When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
  3. If a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; when war shall rise against me, in this will I be confident.
  4. One thing have I asked of jehovah, that will I earnestly seek; that I may dwell in the house of jehovah all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of jehovah, and to inquire in his temple.
  5. For he will hide me in his tabernacle in the day of evil; he will conceal me in the secret place of his tent; he will set me high upon a rock.
  6. And now shall my head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me; and I will offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of shouting; I will sing hymns to jehovah.
  7. Hear my voice, O jehovah; I will cry, be merciful to me, and answer me.
  8. Unto you, my heart, Jehovah has said, Seek my face; your face, O jehovah, will I seek.
  9. Hide not your face from me; put not away your servant in anger; you have been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O god of my salvation.
  10. For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but jehovah will gather me.
  11. Teach me your way, O jehovah, and lead me in the path of rectitude because of mine enemies.
  12. Deliver me not over to the lust of mine enemies; for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe violence;
  13. Nevertheless, I firmly believe I shall see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living.
  14. Hope in jehovah, be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart; yea, hope you in jehovah.

The Internal Sense

The lord’s discourse with the father, that he is not afraid of the hells which fight against him, verses 1 to 3; of his union with the father, verses 4 to 10, 13, 14; that thereby he will subdue the hells, verses 11, 12.

Exposition

Verse 3. If a host encamp against me. Army signifies truths and goods; see AC 3348; and truths and goods are arranged by the lord according to heavenly order; hence, arrangement according to order is the encamping of an army, and the heavenly order itself, which is heaven, is the camp; this camp, or this order, is such that it cannot possibly be broken into by hell, although hell is in a continual endeavour to break into it; hence also that order or heaven is called a camp, and the truths and goods, that is, the angels, who are arranged according to that order, are called armies. Inasmuch as several expressions in the Word have an opposite sense, so also has camp, and, according to such sense, signifies evils and falses, consequently hell, as in David, “If a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear, Psalm 27:3. AC 4236.

Verses 4, 5. One thing have I asked of jehovah, that will I earnestly seek, that I may dwell in the house of jehovah all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of jehovah, and to enquire in his temple; for he will, hide me in his tabernacle in the day of evil; he will conceal me in the secret place of his tent; he will set me high upon a rock. Mention is here made of the house of jehovah, of his temple, tent, and tabernacle, and by the house, of jehovah is signified the church which is in the good of love to the lord, by the temple the church which is in truths grounded in that good; by the tent of jehovah is signified Divine Truth, and by the tabernacle Divine Good; hence it is evident that by dwelling in the house of jehovah all the days of my life is not meant to dwell in the house of jehovah, but in the good of love to the lord, and that by visiting in the morning the temple of jehovah is not meant to visit it every morning, but to enquire after and seek the truths of that good; hence by hiding in the tent is signified to keep in Divine Truth, and to be protected from falses, and by being concealed in the secret place of the tabernacle is signified to keep in Divine good, and to be protected from evils; by being set up high on a rock is signified to instruct in the interior truths. AE 799.

In the supreme sense the lord, as to his Human Essence, is the tent, the tabernacle, and the temple. AC 414.

Verse 6. I will offer in his tabernacle the sacrifices of shouting. In the Word mention is made of various instruments, and each of them has its distinct signification, of which, by the Divine mercy of the lord, we shall speak in their proper places. At the present we shall confine ourselves to what is said in David, “I will sacrifice in the tabernacle of jehovah the sacrifices of shouting,” where by the tabernacle is meant the celestial principle, and by shouting, singing, and chanting is expressed the spiritual principle thence derived. AC 420.

Verse 9. Hide not your face from me; put not away your servant in anger. From the above explications it may be known what the face of jehovah, or the lord, signifies namely: the Divine love, and every good in heaven and the church thence derived; hence also may be known what is signified by hiding or concealing the face, where jehovah or the lord is treated of, namely: that it is to leave man in his own proprium, and thence in evils and falses which gush out from the proprium. For man, viewed in himself, is nothing but evil and the falses thence derived, and is withheld from them by the lord that he may be in good, which is effected by an elevation from the proprium. Hence it may be manifest that by hiding and concealing the face, when it relates to the lord, is signified to leave man in evils and falses, as in the following passages, “On account of all their wickedness I have concealed my faces from this city,” Jeremiah 33:5: and in Isaiah, “Your sins have hid the faces of god from you, that he did not hear,” Is 59:2; and in David, “Hide not your faces from me, put not away your servant in anger,” Psalm xxvii. AE 412.

Verse 10. For my father and mother have forsaken me, and jehovah will gather me. Father and mother here denote good and truth, which are said to have forsaken, when man observes that of himself he is not able to do any thing good, or to know any thing true; that it is not to be understood as if David was forsaken by his father and mother is manifest. AC 3703.

Verse 13. I nevertheless firmly believe I shall see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living. Inasmuch as death signifies damnation and hell, hence life on the other hand signifies salvation and heaven, as in Matthew, “Strait is the gate and narrow is the way that leads to life,” Matt 7:14: again, “If you will enter into life, keep the commandments,” Matt 19:17. Hence it is that salvation is called eternal life, as in Matthew 19:24; Mark 10:24; 30; Luke 10:25; and that heaven is called the land of the living, as in David, “jehovah, you are my confidence, my portion in the land of the living,” Psalm 142:5; again, “That you may see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living.” AE 186.

The Translator’s Notes and Observations

Verse 1. jehovah is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? jehovah is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid? In the original Hebrew two distinct terms are used to express what is here rendered I fear and shall be afraid, and hence we may safely conclude that two distinct ideas were intended to be suggested. It is not easy to say what these two distinct ideas are, but it appears most probable, from the proper sense of the two Hebrew terms which are here rendered I fear and am afraid, that the former term has more respect to fear, as an internal principle manifesting itself in the human heart, and the latter term has relation to the external effect of that fear in causing symptoms of outward trembling and agitation.

Verse 2. When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat my flesh, they stumbled and fell. The wicked are here called enemies and foes, probably for the purpose of expressing their two fold opposition to the divine good and the divine truth, and thus their two fold purpose of destroying in man both the love of good, and the understanding of truth, which is to eat up his flesh.

Verse 6. I will offer in his tabernacle the sacrifices of shouting. In the received English version of the Psalms, what is here rendered shouting is expressed by the term joy, but in the original Hebrew the term is derived from a root expressive of the elevation of the voice in the way of shouting, and accordingly it follows, “I will sing a hymn to jehovah.”

Verse 11. Teach me your way, O jehovah, and lead me in the path of rectitude. For the distinct meaning of the two terms way and path, see the Translator’s notes and observations on Psalm xxv.

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Psalm 27July 11, 1999

The Light that Dispels Fear

How you can tell when it’s going to be a rotten day:

You see a “60 Minutes” news team waiting in your office.

You call Suicide Prevention and they put you on hold.

Your birthday cake collapses from the weight of the candles.

Your twin sister forgot your birthday.

Your car horn goes off accidentally and remains stuck as you follow a group of Hell’s Angels on the freeway.

Your boss tells you not to bother to take off your coat.

The bird singing outside your window is a buzzard.

Your income tax check bounces.

You put both contact lenses in the same eye.

Your wife says, “Good morning, Mike”, and your name is George.

There are times in our lives when our world comes crashing down on us; if anything can go wrong, it will. When life seems to be going in a downward spiral, you’re at the end of your rope and you can’t tie a knot to hold on – fear often takes hold of us. Fear traps us in the belief that nothing will ever improve, that we are ensnared and will never escape. When life gets us down, fear fills the void left by hope.  Fear is not the domain of the timid, but swells over all of us no matter how brave we may appear to be.  Julius Caesar once remarked that even the shouts of his enemies were music to his ears, but he was terribly afraid of thunder. When it vaguely looked like a storm was brewing, he began to shiver and shake. Peter the Great, considered by many to have been the greatest czar of Russia was terrified to cross a bridge. He would tremble in his boots whenever he stepped onto a bridge. King Louis the XV, of France, was so afraid of death the he ordered the subject off limits in his presence. Stalin was constantly in fear of being poisoned or killed. He had 8 bedrooms which could be locked up like safes in a bank. Nobody ever knew in which of these bedrooms he slept on any given night.

We fear losing our health, our wealth, our family; our friends. We fear losing the promotion or even the job. We fear growing old, but even more, we fear death. On his return visit to many parts of the world, Herbert Hoover was asked by a reporter what, in his judgment, was the prevailing mood of the peoples in the lands he had visited. “The dominant emotion everywhere in the world is fear. This applies to every part of human activity; finance, industry, farmers, workers, thinkers, and government officials.”

God has an answer to our problem of fear. The answer to our fears, the solution to our worries lies in the simple understanding of God’s presence.
Fear is disabled by God’s presence  – verses 1-6

God’s presence supersedes God’s enemies  – verses 1-3

King David, who penned these words in Psalm 27, knew the meaning of the word fear better than most. His life consisted of one vicious attack on his life after another. For years he was the number one fugitive in Israel, always hiding from the wrath of King Saul. Later on, his life was threatened by the revolt of his own son Absalom.

We may not find ourselves as outcasts, pursued by potential murderers, with our lives on the line. But our problems still plague us. Our hope evaporates as our resources diminish fast. We may feel that to be left at the mercy of circumstances, under their tyranny, is to be torn apart and left with nothing. David begins with a sense of certainty, of calm in the midst of a storm.  The starting point for David and us are not the circumstances, are not the problems, but the God who is in control of all those circumstances. David does not deny the situations he faces, but those situations do not define for David how he is to respond.  During World War II, a military governor met with General George Patton in Sicily. When he praised Patton for his courage and bravery, the general replied, “Sir, I am not a brave man. . . The truth is, I am an utter craven coward. I have never been within the sound of gunshot or in sight of battle in my whole life that I wasn’t so scared that I had sweat in the palms of my hands. I learned very early in my life never to take counsel of my fears.” Our circumstances must never be what defines our life. Rather than taking counsel of our fears, we must see our life in a much larger perspective. There is nothing so dark and gloomy as fear, nothing so unsettling than being afraid. But when we are intimidated by people, or discouraged by circumstances, God’s presence provides a defense against these frightening circumstances. It is not said merely that the Lord gives light, but that He “is” light; nor that He gives salvation, but that He is salvation. God does not just help us discover a refuge, a place where we are safe; it is He who is our safety. We do not ask Him to give us these things as though they are independent of God, but they describe who our God is.  God’s presence is the light which chases away the shadows of despair. It is in the darkness that our fears take on the horrible shapes of monsters. That is true whether we are four or forty. We live without all the facts, we live in the dark, so our fears become all the more fearsome.  The answer comes not in our manipulation of our circumstances so that peace reigns in our lives. Rather trusting in God’s presence, knowing that He is sovereign, in control, that it is He who is the light in every dark corner of our life – then we can cease being intimidated by the unknown, frightened by the terrors of life. The doom of depression must be expelled by the light of the Gospel. 

Because God is light, because He has guaranteed salvation, because He is a fortress against whatever evil comes our way – its success is never outside the providence of our God; it will never succeed. The reason is simple. God’s control is never undermined. We must know who is all powerful, who is the Creator, who is in charge.

 I recall as a Cub Scout going on a trip to the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland to see a demonstration of military power. While the thunderous explosions delighted the crowd of eight year old boys, the best part was when we got to climb on and in the tanks. But as we raced toward the machinery which had beaten back the Nazi onslaught a generation before, after seeing the power which fought in Korea and was building up in Southeast Asia – it was strange that we were told to be careful as we climbed on these steal beasts. We were cautioned not that we could be hurt, but that we might hurt the tanks.  In the same way, we can have confidence that no harm can come. When evil comes our way, it is never greater than our God. Verse 2 – they’ll stumble and fall, they’ll trip over the laces of their sandals. Even in the anticipation of troubles (verse 3) there can be courage. God’s presence supersedes God’s enemies because…

God’s presence is seen in God’s place  – verses 4-6

The reason for David’s certainty of God’s protection came not on a whim or based on a fleeting dream. But it came about because with singleness of mind, David’s full attention is focused on God’s presence which was seen in God’s dwelling place. David knows that only here can he find the comfort to endure troubling times. There is no other answer, no other solution. With clarity of purpose – the answer lies in God’s house.  David may be expressing a desire to lay aside the stature of the crown for the robes of the tabernacle priests, if that were possible. Or he could be expressing a longing to get away from the pressures of the battlefield and join the rest of Israel in the worship of God. Whatever was his desire, his goal was clear – he knew that it was only by focusing his attention on the beauty of the Lord, seeking Him in his temple that he could find the safety he needed.  What does that mean – that we’ve got to live each day of our life inside the church? In terms of safety statistics, that’s not a bad idea. 20% of all fatal accidents occur in automobiles; 17% of all fatal accidents occur at home; 16% of all fatal accidents occur in plains, trains, and boats; but only 0.001% of all fatal accidents occur in church, so obviously the safest place to be is in church, as much as possible! The reason is much more sensible than that. Seeing God in the sunshine of worship, you can have confidence in the shadows of life. Fear fades when we see a sovereign God who gives us mercy. Worship and worry can not live in the same heart; they are mutually exclusive. When we fill our minds with who our God is, when we are reminded what He has done for His people, worry begins to fade away.  The focus of the worship in the Old Testament was not the personal needs of the congregation, it was not to offer tidbits of self-help, it was not witty sayings to make one smile. The focus of the worship was God and His work for His people. For that very reason we don’t show up here to see and be seen, we do not come be entertained and made to feel more secure in our sin. Rather the object of our worship is the Triune God. 

The trouble is we are so often busy with so much, that the Sabbath has lost its meaning. There are ball games and family gatherings, there is shopping and cleaning, there is just a little more sleep. But as we crowd out the worship of God from our lives, it is no wonder that fear takes the place of worship. They are mutually exclusive.

Fear is dismantled by God’s grace   – verses 7-14

God’s grace accepts fearful people  – verses 7-10

Having expressed the certainty that despite the mounting troubles he faces, David knows the answer to his fears is found in worship. In verses 7-14 there is a shift in the Psalm from the positive declaration that the evil men will fail to a plaintive cry for help. In the second half of the Psalm we hear the content of his worship. But it is not just pollyannaish musings. David cries to the Lord. He recognizes that for God to rescue him, for God to deal with his fears, is an act of God’s grace.
 
David doesn’t try to argue his case before God that he is worthy of God’s time. He knows he does not deserve God’s grace, but petitions God to listen based on God’s character.
 
Some people say that maturity is demonstrated by faith that never struggles, by rising above the tide of this grimy world and living in some kind of exalted plane where you are never uncertain, never afraid, never assailed. But David’s struggle is refreshingly real. Knowing that God is sovereign, that He will never leave us or forsake us is foundational to our Christian life, but that never means we won’t wonder “why?”
 
David approaches God because of God’s grace which allows him to come.
 
It would be not only presumptuous to barge into the Oval Office, it would be downright deadly. The Secret Service is well armed and only a deranged man would dare to be so bold. How much more dangerous to go before God? But David knows he can pray, he can worship because he comes with an invitation in hand. God accepts fearful people like David, like me.
 
To seek the face of a king meant to seek his favor and forgiveness and mercy. This doesn’t mean: seek what God can do for you, but rather, to seek Him. Come to Him not only to receive gifts or relief from your troubles or answers to your prayers, but to know Him.
 
In verse 9 David is distressed; it seems that he is uncertain as to what God will do.
He does not want God to conceal His face. He does not want to lose the intimacy, the personal communication he has with God at this point. David doesn’t want God to shoo him away in disgust, ignore him and forget him. But then at the end there is a confession, an acknowledgment that God will not do this: “you have been my helper.”
 
In the past God has been there. So, since God does not change, he has nothing to worry about. God will not leave him. As unlikely as it is for parents to abandon their children, yet it happens – God would never do that. As unthinkable as it is for a mother to forget she has kids, God even more so will never forget you belong to Him.

God’s grace teaches fearful people 11-14

David is not asking for an easy way out. He is asking God to instruct him so he will know what to do. Not “God, fix this so my life will be simple.” But “God, help me to endure this situation without harming your name.” This is a dangerous prayer to make, but one which is very necessary. David prays to know God’s way through the difficult situation. He wants the straight path because of the oppressors. The level place, the straight path, is the word which means “uprightness.” He asks God to show him how to live righteously, correctly, in the face of those that are lying about him. In verse 12 the form of attack seems not so much battle, but vicious speech. In battle you die but once, but with a false witness you die a thousand deaths. If he responds in fear, he could lash out at his enemies, but God’s way may be different. It is very tempting to return insult for insult, false information for their lies. But David knows, having seen God’s character as he worshipped, that David could not speak that which is not true.  

David then believed that he would still enjoy the goodness of God in this world; although he was now deprived of all experience of His favor, and could see no spark of light, he is certain of one truth: God’s goodness will be evident even in this life. Sometimes the Lord calms the storm. Sometimes he lets the storm rage and calms His child.

 David concludes with the simple, but profound advice: wait That is a word we never like to hear. Little children whine when told to wait, and the complaining does not diminish with age. But contained within the word “wait” we have a clue as to what waiting does. The origin of the word is to twist, stretch. The tension which occurs during the time of waiting is what produces the strength which is the benefit of waiting. A rope is made strong by the twisting of the fibers together so that it can take the tension when the time of testing comes. You and I likewise are made strong by God’s grace when He puts us under pressure.  The admonition to be strong and take heart is the same form found in Joshua 1:9 where Joshua is told not to be discouraged, not to fear. What then is the man or woman to do in the face of adverse circumstances? He or she is to wait….but that implies hope, a confidence in God that He will answer the prayer and vindicate the oppressed.

Our world is impatient. We want everything right now. We’ve got instant tea and instant coffee, instant computers and instant banking, instant cameras and instant re-dial on our phones. There’s a sign in a shop in Pennsylvania that reads, “Antiques Made While You Wait.” That’s almost as stupid as the one that said, “Ears Pierced While You Wait.” (You don’t leave them there and pick them up later!) Some things that are worthwhile don’t come instantly. Maturity, character, wisdom, perceptiveness, and holiness do not come quickly. All through the Scriptures, God tells us, be patient for the coming of the Lord; wait on the Lord; they that wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; don’t grow weary in doing good, for in due season you will reap a harvest if you don’t give up. Yet we are an impatient lot.

When our family is in a turmoil, we become fearful. When our finances are a shambles, we fret over the checkbook. We want answers immediately. But God commands us to be patient, to wait. He’s won the victory. Sometimes we can do little except to wait and believe. A Jewish refugee wrote an inscription on a wall outside Cologne, Germany, during World War II: “I believe in the sun, even when it’s not shining. I believe in love even when I’m alone. And I believe in God even when He’s silent.”
 
But God has spoken. God has an answer for you and me. On what basis can we be certain that our fears will not come true, that God will leave us to be destroyed by whatever monsters plague us by day and night? This may have been David’s story, but I’m not David. How can we claim this fearlessness in the face of frightening circumstances? How can we know the presence of God’s grace? While this Psalm was written by David about some unknown circumstances in his life, there was another one who knew even greater danger, more fearsome situations and who found His refuge in the Lord.
 
We can have confidence that God is our light, our salvation and our refuge, for it was His own Son who, while evil men came to take Him to be falsely tried and murdered, spoke and they fell to the ground. It was Jesus who knew far better than any of us the horrors of abandonment as He hung on the Cross, as He cried out to His Father, “My God, My God why have you forsaken me?” But He was not completely rejected – for the Father received Him, as we know, on the third day when He rose from the dead. It was then that He could see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
 
His success is now ours – not just by example, but by imputation. Jesus Christ is the light of the world; with Him we will never walk in darkness. Christ will keep us safe; He is the rock on which we are set secure.
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PSALM 27

A Psalm of David.

  1. jehovah is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? jehovah is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?
  2. When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
  3. If a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; when war shall rise against me, in this will I be confident.
  4. One thing have I asked of jehovah, that will I earnestly seek; that I may dwell in the house of jehovah all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of jehovah, and to inquire in his temple.
  5. For he will hide me in his tabernacle in the day of evil; he will conceal me in the secret place of his tent; he will set me high upon a rock.
  6. And now shall my head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me; and I will offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of shouting; I will sing hymns to jehovah.
  7. Hear my voice, O jehovah; I will cry, be merciful to me, and answer me.
  8. Unto you, my heart, Jehovah has said, Seek my face; your face, O jehovah, will I seek.
  9. Hide not your face from me; put not away your servant in anger; you have been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O god of my salvation.
  10. For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but jehovah will gather me.
  11. Teach me your way, O jehovah, and lead me in the path of rectitude because of mine enemies.
  12. Deliver me not over to the lust of mine enemies; for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe violence;
  13. Nevertheless, I firmly believe I shall see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living.
  14. Hope in jehovah, be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart; yea, hope you in jehovah.

The Internal Sense

The lord’s discourse with the father, that he is not afraid of the hells which fight against him, verses 1 to 3; of his union with the father, verses 4 to 10, 13, 14; that thereby he will subdue the hells, verses 11, 12.

Exposition

Verse 3. If a host encamp against me. Army signifies truths and goods; see AC 3348; and truths and goods are arranged by the lord according to heavenly order; hence, arrangement according to order is the encamping of an army, and the heavenly order itself, which is heaven, is the camp; this camp, or this order, is such that it cannot possibly be broken into by hell, although hell is in a continual endeavour to break into it; hence also that order or heaven is called a camp, and the truths and goods, that is, the angels, who are arranged according to that order, are called armies. Inasmuch as several expressions in the Word have an opposite sense, so also has camp, and, according to such sense, signifies evils and falses, consequently hell, as in David, “If a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear, Psalm 27:3. AC 4236.

Verses 4, 5. One thing have I asked of jehovah, that will I earnestly seek, that I may dwell in the house of jehovah all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of jehovah, and to enquire in his temple; for he will, hide me in his tabernacle in the day of evil; he will conceal me in the secret place of his tent; he will set me high upon a rock. Mention is here made of the house of jehovah, of his temple, tent, and tabernacle, and by the house, of jehovah is signified the church which is in the good of love to the lord, by the temple the church which is in truths grounded in that good; by the tent of jehovah is signified Divine Truth, and by the tabernacle Divine Good; hence it is evident that by dwelling in the house of jehovah all the days of my life is not meant to dwell in the house of jehovah, but in the good of love to the lord, and that by visiting in the morning the temple of jehovah is not meant to visit it every morning, but to enquire after and seek the truths of that good; hence by hiding in the tent is signified to keep in Divine Truth, and to be protected from falses, and by being concealed in the secret place of the tabernacle is signified to keep in Divine good, and to be protected from evils; by being set up high on a rock is signified to instruct in the interior truths. AE 799.

In the supreme sense the lord, as to his Human Essence, is the tent, the tabernacle, and the temple. AC 414.

Verse 6. I will offer in his tabernacle the sacrifices of shouting. In the Word mention is made of various instruments, and each of them has its distinct signification, of which, by the Divine mercy of the lord, we shall speak in their proper places. At the present we shall confine ourselves to what is said in David, “I will sacrifice in the tabernacle of jehovah the sacrifices of shouting,” where by the tabernacle is meant the celestial principle, and by shouting, singing, and chanting is expressed the spiritual principle thence derived. AC 420.

Verse 9. Hide not your face from me; put not away your servant in anger. From the above explications it may be known what the face of jehovah, or the lord, signifies namely: the Divine love, and every good in heaven and the church thence derived; hence also may be known what is signified by hiding or concealing the face, where jehovah or the lord is treated of, namely: that it is to leave man in his own proprium, and thence in evils and falses which gush out from the proprium. For man, viewed in himself, is nothing but evil and the falses thence derived, and is withheld from them by the lord that he may be in good, which is effected by an elevation from the proprium. Hence it may be manifest that by hiding and concealing the face, when it relates to the lord, is signified to leave man in evils and falses, as in the following passages, “On account of all their wickedness I have concealed my faces from this city,” Jeremiah 33:5: and in Isaiah, “Your sins have hid the faces of god from you, that he did not hear,” Is 59:2; and in David, “Hide not your faces from me, put not away your servant in anger,” Psalm xxvii. AE 412.

Verse 10. For my father and mother have forsaken me, and jehovah will gather me. Father and mother here denote good and truth, which are said to have forsaken, when man observes that of himself he is not able to do any thing good, or to know any thing true; that it is not to be understood as if David was forsaken by his father and mother is manifest. AC 3703.

Verse 13. I nevertheless firmly believe I shall see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living. Inasmuch as death signifies damnation and hell, hence life on the other hand signifies salvation and heaven, as in Matthew, “Strait is the gate and narrow is the way that leads to life,” Matt 7:14: again, “If you will enter into life, keep the commandments,” Matt 19:17. Hence it is that salvation is called eternal life, as in Matthew 19:24; Mark 10:24; 30; Luke 10:25; and that heaven is called the land of the living, as in David, “jehovah, you are my confidence, my portion in the land of the living,” Psalm 142:5; again, “That you may see the goodness of jehovah in the land of the living.” AE 186.

The Translator’s Notes and Observations

Verse 1. jehovah is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? jehovah is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid? In the original Hebrew two distinct terms are used to express what is here rendered I fear and shall be afraid, and hence we may safely conclude that two distinct ideas were intended to be suggested. It is not easy to say what these two distinct ideas are, but it appears most probable, from the proper sense of the two Hebrew terms which are here rendered I fear and am afraid, that the former term has more respect to fear, as an internal principle manifesting itself in the human heart, and the latter term has relation to the external effect of that fear in causing symptoms of outward trembling and agitation.

Verse 2. When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat my flesh, they stumbled and fell. The wicked are here called enemies and foes, probably for the purpose of expressing their two fold opposition to the divine good and the divine truth, and thus their two fold purpose of destroying in man both the love of good, and the understanding of truth, which is to eat up his flesh.

Verse 6. I will offer in his tabernacle the sacrifices of shouting. In the received English version of the Psalms, what is here rendered shouting is expressed by the term joy, but in the original Hebrew the term is derived from a root expressive of the elevation of the voice in the way of shouting, and accordingly it follows, “I will sing a hymn to jehovah.”

Verse 11. Teach me your way, O jehovah, and lead me in the path of rectitude. For the distinct meaning of the two terms way and path, see the Translator’s notes and observations on Psalm xxv.

PSALMS 27    Other translations  –  previous  –  next  –  meaning  –  Psalms  –  BM Home  –  Full Page
Psalms
A collection of 150 psalms, whose Hebrew name is “The Book of Praise.” Authors of individual psalms include David, Solomon, Moses, Asaph, and others who are anonymous. The variety and unity of Psalms have given this book a unique place in the devotional life of the individual and the Church. Almost every aspect of man’s relation to God is depicted in these poems: simple trust, the sense of sin, appeal to a higher power in time of trouble, and the conviction that the world is in the hands of a loving God.

Sermon Notes

About Ricklee's Poetry Plus

I'm a single man of moderate years in good health. I exercise everyday. I've been blogging for four years now. I'm really only learning how. I enjoy golf, swimming, baseball, football, soccer and other sports. I like to go dancing and the night life often. I really love to write poetry of my daily experiences of myself and my past friendships. I like to inspire and give people hope since I needed those feelings in the past.
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