The Bible's Song Book - Lesson 5
The Bible’s Song Book
A Study of the Psalms
Pastor Robert Soverall
Lesson 5: Psalm 34
Talk about a power-packed psalm! This ancient song is a powerhouse—filled with lyrics and verses that still occupy a significant place is the language of the contemporary believer! (See verses 1-3, 6-8,15,16, & 19)
The background & structure of this psalm provide much opportunity for deeper study. The superscription gives us the context of the song’s genesis:
David is in enemy territory and escapes capture or death (through somewhat undignified means). Read the actual account in 1 Samuel 21:10-22:1). Remember, In lesson 2, we talked about how we get most creative when under pressure? This incident in David’s life is a perfect example. Though his deceptive actions are not necessarily commendable, his “re-action” to GOD’s favor lead him to compose this legendary song! (By the way, “Achish” is the proper name of the king in
1 Sam. 21; “Abimelech”, as he is called in the superscription of Psalm 34, is his title.)
This song is an ACROSTIC psalm. That means each verse begins with a letter from the Hebrew alphabet. Wow!! Talk about creativity! And this all results from pressure:
David is running from the king of Israel, who wants him dead.
David narrowly escapes imprisonment or death at the hands of the king of Philistia.
Though already anointed as king himself, he is homeless, kingdomless and living in a cave.
Yet, the KING of kings has favored, surrounded, heard and rescued David! And David, in response, offers a creative and passionate song of praise to his KING, who will one day deliver David and accomplish His purposes through this royal fugitive!
There is so much good stuff in this Psalm! Read it several times in several versions; memorize the verses that resonate with you (like any good song, this one has lines that have stood the test of time!). But let me share one more nugget with you:
Verse 20 seems so innocuous or understated that you could easily pass right over it. “David never broke a bone...that’s great!” But this verse has a prophetic element to it! In the Gospel of John (19:33, 36) we see Jesus on the cross, dying as our Passover Lamb, fulfilling John the Baptist’s declaration (John 1:29). Now, it was customary for the victims of crucifixion to have their legs broken, as this would hasten their death. But when the soldiers came to Jesus, He had already died. The actual Passover Lamb was cooked without breaking its bones! And John points to Psalm 34:20 and declares that JESUS fulfilled that verse when He died without suffering a broken bone! So even in the midst of his personal drama, GOD was still speaking through David and revealing Heaven’s plan for the rescue of all who would believe in JESUS CHRIST—the Lamb of GOD!
I will indeed bless the LORD at all times!!!
Think about it: while you may be asking GOD to deliver you from a pressure-packed situation, please consider how He might be trying to get something wonderful out of you...
Extend your faith: Look past your current circumstances—GOD is working something glorious that will have future implications for His glory and your benefit!
Pray: pick a verse...there are so many to choose! Pray GOD’s word back to Him and watch Him respond!