Here are some brief notes on Psalm 5 - they take the form of an answer to the question 'Why will God hear & help David?'
No particular note is given - it may be linked to the rebellion of Absalom but also fits into to his trials of persecution experienced at the hands of Saul. Equally it could be drawn from any trouble in the life of a believer - at all such times we can be confident God will hear us for the following reasons:
- David prays continually, repeatedly, fervently, spiritually & logically - the form of verb 'to you I pray' is reiterative in force verses 1-2 ‘again & again & again’.
- Kings defend loyal faithful servants and subjects when under attack or in danger or when they petition their sovereign government for assistance - if former Isis fighters dare appeal to Britain for deportation home in their cause of terrorism, will believers not issue confident appeals for the sake of truth - and will the LORD not answer such pleas verse 2? ‘Unto you do I pray!’
- God the LORD is faithful to His Covenant promise to be our God both to His Anointed especially, to Israel particularly and to believers generally & singly - He cannot leave or forsake his own verse 2. ‘My King & my God.’ ‘The sound of my cry for salvation.’
- David needs help and is at risk. Clearly God’s own honor is at stake and His cause is under threat - for sure the LORD will help verse 1. ‘Give ear O LORD!’
- God has promised to hear the prayers of His people when they direct their prayers to Zion where He dwells among them to bless them - like Daniel knelt and did verses 2b, 7b. ‘I will bow toward your holy temple!’
- David makes this a daily habit and waits expectantly on God for a reply to His supplicative sacrifice of prayer verse 3. ‘Morning by morning ...I arrange in order my petition like a priest lays out pieces of a sacrifice on the altar.’ That is the probably the sense in context of the verb in the original.
- Yahweh’s moral character is to hate evil - David prays according to God’s will verse 4-6.
- David offers the spiritual worship that God requires - by the Spirit if Christ verses 2-3, 7.
- For the sake of the good of the Kingdom of God & His cause verse 8.
- God hates rebels who are attacking Himself, His cause and His Christ (the royal anointed Covenant King David) verse 9-10.
- For the good government of His Kingdom and its laws which suppress evil for the common good and progress of the truth - He will not let His Law be despised for long verses 4-6.
- God is merciful verse 7 - the loving-kindness, covenanted-loyalty, word is used.
- David reveres the LORD and His purposes and is is walking in a right relationship with Him verse 8.
- David wants to be led in righteous paths - He suffers for God’s sake verse 8.
- God is the just Judge who must do right and punish the wicked verses 6, 10.
- For the joy and salvation of the people of God whose elected Head David is verses 11-12.
- God is the Shield and Reward (Genesis 15) of all who take refuge in Him - as He was with Abram so He is with us verse 12 - Lo, even always, to the end of the age.
- David is concerned not so much about petty revenge, personal gripes or private interests but about the public cause of God - he prays for the state of His church for the health of His subjects.
So Who Is Really Praying Here?
So it was that Christ, as the Son of David, in His Covenanted Mediatorial work of redemption, excelled His forefather in prayer - Jesus lived a life of exemplary, fervent, entire, prayerful, dependent, supplication on God. He uttered loud cries to His Father throughout the course of pains. This submissive sacrifice was constantly offered up that He might finish His course and establish God's Kingdom for us. Here, then, in this Psalm, the Lord Jesus Christ prays by the Spirit in the mouth of David, His type and prophet. What we have here is the prophetic typical prayer, articulated by the Spirit of the anti-typical Head. Thus, in our Lord, Christ's Body also prays to God. So this is a prayer the Spirit also puts on our lips as the fervent, tested, needy people of God!
LORD defend your cause - through Jesus' Spirit of Supplicating prayer, build your church: in your grace hear our voice!