This psalm is written by King David, and has been a blessing and encouragement to many people over thousands of years.
It starts with the phrase “Do not fret”, which sets the tone for the rest of the psalm. David is giving sound, Godly advice, very practical and well reasoned. It is true that we are very prone to fret, whether it’s the weather, or money, or relationships, or health. We see problems around every corner. Perhaps you run out of paint before you have finished the last panel, and the local shop has got none left, and lockdown means it is difficult to get any more. In verse 1 David is concerned particularly with evildoers and workers of iniquity. Don’t fret or be envious about them, as their end is certain.
In verse 3 we are encouraged to “Trust in the LORD”. He is Yahweh Nissi, the LORD our Banner, the One who fights for us and is victorious in battle. Who else can we trust in?
Verse 4 exhorts us to “Delight ourselves in the LORD”. Not only is He our protection, but He wants us to enjoy our relationship with Him. It is joyful and rewarding to spend time with Him, and in the process He will give us the desires of our hearts.
David then says, “Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him” (v 5). This is not asking God to help you do the things you want to do. It is finding out what God wants you to do, and then asking for His help to do it. If we do this He will “bring forth our righteousness as the light, and our justice as the noonday” (v 7).
“Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him” is David’s next instruction in verse 7. How we need to rest in these days of busyness and activity. How good are we at waiting patiently? I find it very difficult. In verse nine David says “Those who wait on the LORD shall inherit the earth.”
Verses 12 to 15 describe the antics of the wicked, and their demise. It is interesting that “God laughs” at these antics (v 13).
“Depart from evil, and do good” David instructs us in verse 27.
There is so much mention of the future in this psalm. The righteous will have a glorious inheritance. The phrase “inherit the earth (or land)” comes up five times:
• Those who wait on the LORD (vs 9 & 34)
• The meek (v 11)
• Those blessed by God (v 22)
• The righteous (v 29)
On the other hand, the wicked are facing destruction (vs 2, 9, 10, 13, 15, 17, 20, 22, 28, 34, 36 & 38).
We read in verses 39 and 40 “the salvation of the righteous is from Yahweh; He is their strength in time of trouble; and Yahweh shall help them; and deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.”
But how do we become righteous? In Romans 3 Paul states that we can receive God’s righteousness, and all our unrighteousness will be nullified. We can be “justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (v 24). Yes, we can be made righteous when we turn to Jesus and believe in Him and receive salvation. We become righteous in Jesus. As we receive Jesus our behaviour will begin to change, and the Holy Spirit who comes into us when we believe will enable us to live as God wants us to. We will be able to trust God in any situation we find ourselves in. We will no longer need to fret! We will begin to delight ourselves in Him, and be able to commit our way to Him. We will be able to rest in Him and wait on Him. Could there be anything better?