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The Bible Teaching Commentary
6) Faith prayers enable one to face difficult situations with courage
Paul J. Bucknell
Psalm 63:9-11: Our meditative thoughts of God and His works prepares us by deepening our commitment to Him. When this happens, we are readying to live by faith.Introduction Psalm 63:1-11
1) Sincere prayers (Psalm 63:1a).
2) Powerful prayers (Psalm 63:1b).
3) Great prayers (Psalm 63:2).
4) Affectionate prayers (Psalm 63:3-5).
5) Uplifting prayers (Psalm 63:6-8).
6) Faith prayers (Psalm 63:9-11).
Study Questions on Psalm 63
But those who seek my life, to destroy it, Will go into the depths of the earth. They will be delivered over to the power of the sword; They will be a prey for foxes. But the king will rejoice in God; Everyone who swears by Him will glory, For the mouths of those who speak lies will be stopped.
David was not struggling about some small problem here in these verses. He was not wondering whether he would lose his job but his life. His enemies were out to get him. Frankly, not many of us have an equally challenging situation and that is fine. We can always say, that if God took care of someone in worse circumstances, then He can care for me in mine.
How many times is the word ‘will’ used in these three verses? That is right six times. David was living in the wilderness but every once in a while he would hear horses and soldiers marching. They were not after some big enemy. They would be after him. A whole army was after, what he once called himself to Saul, a flea. Prayer is not an escape from life but equips us for the challenges that God has for us.
If you do not regularly pray, you will become prey. It is simple as that. You might think you do not have a problem in the world but when those problems come, you will panic. You will not know what to do. You will be tempted. You will compromise. You will fail. You will have no testimony.
David on the other hand is readying himself for the battle through prayer. Some of you are concerned with the breakdown of morals around you. The dark is getting real dark. I’m afraid to go near the television because of some horrible scene I might see. It is like anticipating a shock when you touch the device. It is even worse when you are raising children in a society that is so evil.
I don’t want my children to hear the news. Why should they or I have to hear about little girls being abused and thrown in a garbage bin held down with cement blocks? The harlot of Babylon is not something of the future. She is here. She pulls at you every time you go on the web.
The pull of darkness is there, and sometimes very strong. And when you begin to think about it, you feel overwhelmed. One can feel the spirit of darkness hover over you and cause a spirit of fear to arise. David’s circumstances might be different but the sequence of threat from the evil one to live by fear rather than faith is very real.
David the great general did not take confidence in his plans. He did not delude himself that they would never catch him. Instead he spent time praying. And I tell you brothers and sisters, it is only in prayer that you and I will gain the faith that we need to overcome the evil one. The evil one is a great intimidator.
He will make you feel like Mr. Nobody. That is true of course. We are nobody without God. But even worse he will make you feel like you are all alone and there is no one to help you. He will coax you into a corner so that you shut your lips. He will convince you that you can do nothing to change things. He will do his best to eliminate any chance that you gain hope by keeping you from hearing God’s Word and too busy for prayer.
Does this sound like you? Have you ever experienced what I am sharing? His tactics are similar. His purpose is always the same. Get you to doubt- to despair- to die.
God on the other hand has provided all that we need to stand strong. David first speaks the truth that those who try to get his life will find the end of their own lives. David knows that no one can take his life before his job is done. And so it was. He lived to a long life and died long past retirement. “But the king will rejoice in God; everyone who swears by Him will glory for the mouths of those who speak lies will be stopped.”
Secularism is our greatest enemy right now. Materialism and feminism are right behind. They threaten to destroy the family. If things are not changed, the family will be destroyed within 20 to 30 years here. It is only hanging on for life now. We have big trouble coming. Darkness is on the march. You will either live by fear or faith.
You might say I want to live by faith but if you do not pray, if you do not meditate, if you do not praise, if you do not remember God and His works, then your words and thoughts are not sincere. I have seen pastor after pastor go down. If it wasn’t for prayer, I would be down too. This is the reason after naming all the pieces of the armor with which we fight “against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” the apostle mentions prayer.
With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints, and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make know with boldness the mystery of the gospel. (Ephesians 6:18-19).
If you think prayer is some religious rosary for old people with nothing to do, you are greatly mistaken. Prayer is the very breath of spiritual life. Prayer is the means we commune with the eternal and awesome Lord of the heavens and earth. To neglect prayer is to ask for trouble. To seek Him in prayer is to find faith and strength for difficult times that will come.
I can guess at some of the hard times that are coming. Some articles that I am writing might be the very ones that will be used to put me in jail in a few years. But because of prayer, I have made my choice to do what is right rather than step into the darkness of compromise. God will take care of me and all those who trust Him. When we seek Him, then nothing can touch us. “Faith is the victory that has overcome the world.”
This is my plan. I am going to fight to death, if need be, the very greatest forces that now have been stomping God’s vineyard. Do not think you will have a good marriage without prayer. Do not be deluded that your family will be fine if you do not pray. Do not think you can withstand compromises of life if you do not pray. For it is through prayer like David we gain faith. Faith enables us to trust in the promises of God when we have no hope. Faith enables us to stay close to God when everything else has been stripped away.
I do hope that we are a prayer center. If we are not, we will be naught. We do not know what will happen in the future but we do have a choice on being men and women of prayer. If it takes you to give up late hours so that you can meet God early in the morning, then make that decision and have someone keep you accountable. If you are not strong enough to pray by yourself, find a brother or sister to pray with. It is imperative that you do everything to create and maintain a prayer life that depends on God.
God is doing mighty things on earth. I hope that you are part of it. I personally always recommend that one humbles ones own heart. You can avoid some wilderness experiences. But never fret over them. God is working out something much greater. You see through every difficulty, God reveals something new and special about Himself.
This revelation about Himself leads us to live in awe of Him. He draws us closer and to a deeper commitment. And so through our difficult times, times where the intimidator and doubter comes, we can instead choose to think on how God has delivered us in the past. This will give birth to a powerful and courageous faith much like the early disciples who were filled with the Spirit of God.
There is a world of difference between life prayers and religious prayers. Some of you don’t pray because you don’t understand how prayer is linked up to your life. I hope by taking a close look at David’s prayer, you will see how integral prayer is to the life of an individual. It has everything to do with the growth and success of a Christian.
That is also why we can see if you do not pray, then there is no life. There has been no meeting with God. There is nothing to praise God for from a personal point of view. But indeed for those who pray and know of God’s wonderful grace, our relationship with God springs with life and joy.
Continue on : Study Questions on Psalm 63