Day 28

Psalms Book 2 - cont.

Psalm 51

A Psalm of David: A prayer of repentance. It is considered that the title to this psalm tells us that David wrote this after Nathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone into Bathsheba. Some dispute this based on verses 4 and 18. Nevertheless, it is a wonderful prayer of repentance. David prays for the remission of his sins. He is deeply penitent and pleads for God to purge his sins and renew his heart, fearful that God’s Holy Spirit will be taken from him. David is convinced a broken and contrite heart is the true sacrifice, but promises that ordained sacrifices will continue.

Psalm 52

A Psalm of David: The fate of the wicked. Written when Doeg the Edomite told Saul that David had gone to the house of Abimelech [1 Sam 22:9]. The potential mischievousness of a powerful enemy who prefers evil and lying is noted, as is his inevitable destruction which is expected of a man who trusts in his riches and wickedness rather than God. Contrariwise, David trusts in God and will praise Him for ever.

Psalm 53

A Psalm of David: The folly of the godless. This psalm appears to be an updated version of Psalm 14, but with verses 5b and 6 being omitted. Society is generally godless and none can be found that do any good. Where there was no fear of God there now is, as He judged the godless and put them to shame. David prays for the restoration of Israel.

Psalm 54

A Psalm of David: A prayer for deliverance. When the Ziphites had gone to Saul and said Is not David hiding among us? [1 Sam 23:19-29]. David complains that godless strangers have risen up against him with intent to kill him. He declares his confidence that God will protect him and punish his enemies. He promises to continue in his sacrifices to God and speaks of his deliverance.

Psalm 55

A Psalm of David: A time of distress; The treachery of a friend. David, in great danger and distress from his enemies, cries out to God. He wishes he had the wings of a dove so that he could fly away and be at rest. He prays against his enemies and makes mention of a man he had considered his friend, but is now a cause of much distress to him. Through all this, David still has confidence in God and expects his enemies to be dealt with. Psalm 56 A Psalm of David: Trust in God in the face of adversity. When the Philistines captured him in Gath [1 Sam 21:10-15]. David, in the hands of his enemies, again puts his trust in God, praying for support against them. He has every expectation of deliverance and promises continued praise and obedience.

Psalm 57

A Psalm of David: A prayer for safety whilst amongst his enemies, when he fled from Saul into the cave [1 Sam 22:1; 24]. David cries out to God for mercy from amongst his enemies, whom he describes as lions, having every confidence his prayer will be heard. He promises to give praise to God in the presence of his people and among the nations.

Psalm 58

A Psalm of David: Judgement of the wicked. David reproves the wicked, both the people and judges whose wickedness is like a poison. Their destruction is foretold. The righteous will rejoice in the knowledge that God will judge the earth and they will be rewarded.

Psalm 59

A Psalm of David: Assured judgement of the wicked. On the occasion that Saul sent men, and they watched the house in order to kill him. David prays to God for deliverance from his enemies and expresses his complete confidence in Him. He requests the manner of their defeat then sings praises for past benefits, which he knows only came through God’s mercy and deliverance.

Psalm 60

A Psalm of David: An urgent prayer for God’s favour to be restored to Israel. On the occasion when he fought against Mesopotamia and Syria of Zobah, and Joab returned and killed twelve thousand Edomites in the Valley of Salt. (Tradition assigns this psalm to events recorded in 2 Sam 8). David speaks of the nation’s demise and attributes it to God’s displeasure. He prays for deliverance and is confident in his expectation of victory over Shechem, Succoth, Gilead, Ephraim, Moab, Idumea, and the Philistines, and pleads with God to help him.

Psalm 61

A Psalm of David: Prayer of a burdened king. Possibly penned on an occasion when he had been banished from the land, David calls upon God because he had protected and provided for him in the past and trusts He will continue to do so.

Psalm 62

A Psalm of David: Waiting on and trusting in God. David professes his confidence in God and encourages his soul to wait on Him. He declares God to be his rock, salvation and defender, and encourages others also to trust in Him and no other. God will give to every man according to his works.

Psalm 63

A Psalm of David: When he was in the wilderness of Judah. A thirsty heart. David’s soul thirsts after God, for he finds great satisfaction in communion with Him. He rejoices in his assured safety in God and is joyful over his dependence on Him in the face of his adversaries.

Psalm 64

A Psalm of David: Oppressed by the wicked; rejoicing in the Lord. David prays to be preserved from the wicked. He foretells their downfall and the resultant fear of God, which will bring gladness to the hearts of those that trust in Him.

Psalm 65

A Psalm of David: Of praise and thanksgiving. God is praised for hearing prayer, forgiving sins, the satisfaction He brings to the hearts of men, and for their salvation. Words of thanksgiving are offered for God’s creation and its abundant provision for mankind.

Psalm 66

A psalm of thanksgiving. The psalmist calls upon all to praise God. He reminds the Jews of God’s mighty acts for their forefathers and what He is doing for them now. He resolves to pay his vows made to God when he was in trouble, to offer the appropriate sacrifices and to bear witness to all concerning what God has done for him.

Psalm 67

A prayer for the increase of God’s kingdom. The psalmist prays for God’s mercy on Israel as an example to all nations and calls upon all to praise Him. He then calls upon all nations to serve God because He judges and governs righteously. Those that fear God will be blessed.

Psalm 68

A Psalm of David: The triumphant rule of Israel’s God. David opens this psalm with a prayer against his enemies and for his people. He urges them to praise God for His greatness and compassion. His words remind them of God’s presence during the exodus when He gave them the law, refreshed them when they were weary and gave them victory over their enemies. David lapses into prophecy and speaks of Christ’s ascension, of salvation, the victory He would have over His enemies and of the enlargement of the church by the inclusion of the Gentiles. The psalm concludes with an invitation to all to sing God’s praises and acknowledge His greatness.

Psalm 69

A Psalm of David: When overwhelmed by afflictions. After Psalm 22, this is the most quoted psalm in the New Testament. In the first 20 verses David speaks of the dire straights he finds himself in; his circumstances seem overwhelming and he is having to wait on God’s mercy. His problems include his enemies, the shame of his own sins that might cause others to stumble, his estrangement from his brethren and his recognition that hatred for him can be a reflection of people’s hatred for God. He cries out to God for mercy and deliverance; his heart is broken. In verses 20 to 28 David’s words become prophetic of: Jesus’ loneliness in those last days, His crucifixion, the resultant suffering of the Jews, the destruction of the temple and the blotting out of the ‘book of the living’ of those that deny Him. David promises to continue to praise God with songs and thanksgiving, then speaks of the future restoration of the Jews and inclusion of the Gentiles.

Psalm 70

A Psalm of David: God, make haste. David pleas for God to make haste to deliver him from his enemies. He prays for those who seek God then again asks God to make haste with his deliverance, for he is poor and needy.

Psalm 71

A Psalm of David: Our Bible does not attribute this psalm to David, but the commentator Gill says “This psalm is without title, but it is thought to be David’s: the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions, and all the Oriental ones, ascribe it to him; and both the subject and style show it to be his.” In God I trust. David, declaring his trust in God, prays for deliverance with confidence, for God is his rock and fortress and has been from his youth. In these latter days, now his strength is failing, he doesn’t want his enemies to think God has forsaken him and prays for them to be confounded. David’s hope and determination is that he will continue to be a witness to God in his old age, and trusts that God will still be with him and against his adversaries.

Psalm 72

A Psalm of Solomon   or   A Psalm for Solomon. There is mixed opinion concerning the authorship. Some commentators, past and present, say this is David’s last psalm written for his son Solomon, the first and last verses supporting this, as does the inclusion of prophecy. David prays for Solomon in verses 1 and 2, then from verse 3 his words prophesy the kingdom reign of Jesus Christ. His reign will be righteous and all will revere Him throughout the generations; it will be refreshing for the righteous, they will flourish and there will be an abundance of peace; his dominion will be over the whole earth; the poor and needy will be taken care of; there will be an abundance of provisions; His name will endure forever, all will be blessed in Him and all will call Him blessed. The whole earth will be filled with His glory. This psalm ends with the statement that the prayers of David are now ended, indicating this was the last psalm he wrote, although there are some of his previous writings recorded later in the Book of Psalms.

Book 3

[73-89]

Psalm 73

A Psalm of Asaph: Do not be tempted by the apparent prosperity of the ungodly. The psalmist first acknowledges God is good to those with a clean heart. He then speaks of his envy of the wicked, their apparent prosperity despite their ungodly ways and attitudes, and how he fell into temptation. But he was delivered from temptation when he drew near to God and was able to see beyond the worldly, recognising that the ungodly will eventually perish whereas those that trust in God have a far greater prospect in the glory of eternal life.

Psalm 74

A Psalm of Asaph: A plea for relief from oppressors that have desolated the sanctuary. The psalmist speaks of the acts committed against the sanctuary. He calls on God to take action for his people as he had done in the times of the exodus. He pleads with God not to allow the oppressors to continue to dishonour His name and shame the oppressed, but to rise against His enemies and the enemies of His people.

Psalm 75

A Psalm of Asaph: God is judge. The psalmist gives thanks to God who is the sovereign judge of all the earth. Only the righteous will be exalted.

Psalm 76

A Psalm of Asaph: God’s majesty in judgement. The true God known in Judah, Israel, Salem and Zion, majestic in defeat of Israel’s enemies and merciful to the meek of all the earth. His people must not forget their vows and obligations; all nations ought to fear God and pay the homage due to Him.

Psalm 77

A Psalm of Asaph: Consolation in times of distress. The psalmist cries out to God in a time of distress when he feels God has deserted him. He meditates on all the marvellous works God has done for His people and in this is able to console himself.

Psalm 78

A Psalm of Asaph: A reminder of God’s relationship with Israel as a lesson for all generations. This psalm is introduced as being a reminder for the present and all future generations of God’s compassion for His people to encourage them to keep His commandments. The psalmist recalls Israel’s history of rebellion, their punishments, their insincere repentance and God’s continued compassion for them. They repeatedly backslid and were forgetful of His mercy shown towards them from the time He delivered them out of Egypt. Even after they had entered the Promised Land and their enemies had been defeated, God’s anger was continually provoked. God eventually removed any judgements they had brought upon themselves by rejecting the tribes of Israel, choosing Judah and David to be king over His people, and bringing them to their present happy state.

Psalm 79

A Psalm of Asaph: A prayer for God to take action against those that brought desolation to Jerusalem. The psalmist speaks of the desolations wrought upon Jerusalem by their enemies and prays for God to deal with them. He asks God to exercise mercy towards His people, and to pardon and restore them for His name’s sake. In return he promises gratitude and praise expressed through the generations.

Psalm 80

A Psalm of Asaph: A cry to God for the restoration of His people. This psalm is a prayer for the Israelite captives who are suffering before their neighbours and enemies. Israel is compared to a vineyard, planted in Canaan. It spread and flourished, but then in time became wasted and ruined. The psalmist cries out to God to return to His people and restore His vineyard.

Psalm 81

A Psalm of Asaph: A festival song. This psalm is considered to be one of those chosen to be sung at a festival, although there is no absolute certainty as to which one. The people are exhorted to praise God for His deliverance, to heed His ordinances, and to lament past transgressions and consequential sufferings.

Psalm 82

A Psalm of Asaph: A warning to corrupt judges. Judges are questioned as to how long they will continue in their corrupt ways. They are called to judge fairly and to be no respecter of persons. If they do not mend their ways, then they in turn will be judged by God.

Psalm 83

A Psalm of Asaph: Against a confederation of enemies. The psalmist calls upon God for help against a number of named enemies who are conspiring to cut Israel off as a nation. Included in the names are Moab and Ammon, descendants of Lot, and Edom, descendants of Esau. He asks God to punish them as he had punished particular nations and individuals in the past. He further asks they should be confounded, troubled, put to shame and perish, all to be done for the glory of God.

Psalm 84

A Psalm for the Sons of Korah: A longing to be closer to God. The psalmist here pours out his heart, longing for a close communion with God which he sees will be found in the sanctuary at Zion. He refers to all who are there with God as being blessed, and prays in confidence to be able to spend even a little time in His house.

Psalm 85

A Psalm for the Sons of Korah: Thanksgiving and a call for further mercy. The psalmist gives thanks to God for the the restoration of His people, but still sees the need for mercy to be shown towards them. He prays in confidence, knowing God will answer and show mercy to those who fear Him, and has an expectation that glorious blessings will follow.

Psalm 86

A Psalm of David: A prayer for mercy. David prays for daily support, knowing that God is always ready to show mercy and forgive. There is no other like God and all nations will come to recognise His glory and worship Him. David prays for further instruction from God and promises to praise Him with all his heart and to glorify His name for evermore. He makes a plea to God to show mercy towards him in the face of his enemies, and to show a token for good that will shame them.

Psalm 87

A Psalm for the Sons of Korah: Zion, city of God. The psalmist speaks of the glorious future of Zion whose inhabitants will even include former enemies. The conversion of Jews and Gentiles will be cause for much praise and celebration.

Psalm 88

A Psalm for the Sons of Korah; A contemplation by Heman the Ezrahite; The cry of a man in deep distress nearing death. This is perhaps the darkest of psalms, being one of complete woe and does not end with any hint of relief, comfort or joy. The psalmist’s soul is full of troubles as he approaches the end of his life. He feels as if he were already in the grave with those who have no more access to God. All his friends have left him to suffer alone with his troubles and the affliction he has in his eye. Daily he cries out to God for mercy and deliverance, knowing that once dead he would not be able to praise God, see the wonders of His works, or benefit from His loving kindness. In these dark times, he has no lover, friend or acquaintances.

Psalm 89

A contemplation of Ethan the Ezrahite: A prayer for the restoration of Judah. The psalmist speaks of God’s promise to David, His support and mercy shown to him and against his enemies. However, it seems that His covenant with David has been made void as Judah is now captive and David’s enemies are rejoicing. The psalmist entreats God to remember His covenant with David and bring about restoration.
30-Day Reading Plan This is a 30-day reading plan based on an average of 15 minutes per session - a total read time of 7½ hours. The actual read times vary from 12 to 20 minutes to accommodate for practical read session end points. If the reading times don’t suit you, then simply go at your own pace and note where you finished. Please select your reading day below
New Testament History Books -
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New Testament Epistles -
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