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The Bible's Song Book - Lesson 2

The Bible’s Song Book

A Study of the Psalms

Pastor Robert Soverall

Lesson 2: Psalm 31

It’s amazing how lines from a song can sometimes live beyond the song itself. Lines like “a bridge over troubled water”, “I’ll be there”, or “put a ring on it” can take us back to the song they belong to; but they can also take us back to moments in time and special emotions.

This somewhat complicated Psalm apparently had the same effect in Bible times. David originally wrote it for “the choir director” but lines from this Psalm have shown up in a few other places:

Jonah’s prayer (Jonah 2:8) echoes verse 6.

The line “fear was on every side” was quoted several times in Jeremiah’s prophecy (Jeremiah 6:25, 20:10, 46:5, 49:29)

And who could forget Jesus’ final words on the cross, according to Luke 23:46? Our Savior directly quoted verse 5 of this song!

Songs live on; they stay with us long after the songwriter has left the scene. But GOD uses these musical messages to get truth into the spirits of those who would believe in HIM—today and for generations to come!

This psalm is composed of two rounds of lament (verses 1–6 & 9-18) and two rounds of praise (verses 7-8, 19-24). Since it is a little long, let’s just look at a few points:

  • GOD’s people go through tough times. Sometimes as a result of bad decisions; sometimes through no fault of our own; sometimes we are targeted by our enemies. But if we commit our spirits (the essence of who we are) into GOD’s hands, like our Savior we will rise in victory! (See 1 Corinthians 15:57)

  • It’s alright to call on GOD for help! David cried, “deliver me; come to my rescue; be gracious to me; silence their lying lips” in this song. He’s not in denial about his situation: “I am in distress; tears blur my eyes; my body and soul are withering away.” Vs. 9-10 NLT. Sometimes we need Divine Intervention to get us out of the pit! David was a man of great faith in GOD and yet he passionately called on GOD in his darkest moments. Too many Christians walk away from fellowship, service and even their faith during their darkest moments. Let’s remember to run to GOD—not away from Him—when things get rough.

  • The believer is never hopeless. The believer is never forsaken. Look at the final verse: the same man who was frustrated, forlorn and forsaken, found that his hope was not in people but in the LORD! And that realization gave him strength of heart and courage to face the next challenge.

One of the best ways to get a little more out of the Bible is to see yourself in the pages. Have you ever been to the place that David was in when he wrote this song? Well, he came out victorious...why can’t you??

Think about it: Sometimes we are most creative when things are not going well. Why is that?

Extend your faith: Read verse 21 in the NLT or NIV. Have you continued to praise GOD even while “under siege”? David prayed! Our times are in GOD’s hands; let’s trust Him to work everything out for our good and for His glory!

Use Psalm 31:14-16 in your prayer time today.

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