18:0This is a very special psalm. It is so special that you will find it in 2 places in the Bible. It is here in the Book of Psalms. It is also in a part of the Bible that we call the Book of Samuel. Samuel is in 2 parts. I Samuel tells the story of David before he became king of Israel. 2 Samuel tells us the story of David after he became king. 1 Samuel also tells us about the lives of Samuel the prophet and Saul the king. Why is Psalm 18 in the Book of Samuel? (2 Samuel 22) Because it is David's own story of his life. Here we have put it in 6 parts. This gives help to everyone that reads it. It is like 6 different psalms. We can study it like that. But we must read the whole psalm to understand the life of David. That is why it is also in 2 Samuel.
God is Alive and Well!
18:0Psalm 18 describes in pictures how God works. David did not see God. David only saw how God gave him help. Here are some examples:
– David called God a rock. God was not really a rock. But when David needed help, God led David to a rock. David hid from his enemies behind the rock. So, David thought that God and the rock did the same job. When David saw a rock, he remembered God! Can you think of other ways that rocks make us remember God?
– God sent a bad storm to the enemies of David. There was rain, wind, clouds, hail, thunder and lightning. To David God was in the storm. God was enjoying it. The thunder was like God speaking. The storm obeyed God and it destroyed the enemies of David. So, when David saw a storm he remembered God. Can you think of another storm that obeyed God?
– When David ran in the hills he did not fall. He was as good as a wild animal. His feet were like the feet of a goat. Really, the animal in the psalm was a deer. A deer is like a small cow. It runs very fast and does not fall. David believed that God gave him feet as good as the feet of the deer. You will find other examples in the psalm. Make your own list. Put on it examples from other psalms. Put on it everything that makes you remember God.
This is for the music leader.
It is for the servant of the LORD.
It is for David.
David spoke the words of this song.
David did this when the LORD saved David from his enemies.
Also, when the LORD saved David from Saul.
Part 1: God is a Rock for David
1 I will love you, LORD.
In you, I am strong.
2 The LORD is my rock and my fortress.
He gives me help.
God is my rock.
I run and hide in his shadow.
He is my shield.
He is the one that saves me.
He is my high tower.
18:2Verse 2: David calls God many different names to show what God is like. David hid from his enemies in the woods and fields and hills. He hid behind rocks and on the tops of hills. They were like fortresses. They were like the high towers that soldiers made. David said that they were like the shields that soldiers hid behind. They all made David remember God.
3 The LORD is someone that I must praise.
He will save me from my enemies.
Part 2: David asks for help
4 Death was all round me.
God's enemies were following me.
5 Sheol was tying me down.
Death was catching me.
18:5Verses 4-5: David had many enemies. There was Saul and the friends of Goliath and Cush. (You can read about Cush in Psalm 7.) There were many others, even David's own son Absalom. They all wanted to kill David. This made David feel like a drowning man. He thought that he would soon be in Sheol. So he asked God for help.
6 in my trouble, I prayed to the LORD.
I shouted to my God for help.
He heard my voice from his temple.
My words went into his ears.
Part 3: God answers David
7 So, the earth moved and shook.
The foundations of the mountains shook.
They moved because God was angry.
18:7Verse 7: God gave David help by sending an earthquake. This is when the earth moves and breaks. Buildings fall down.
8 Smoke rose from his nose.
Burning fire came from his mouth.
Burning coals shot out from him.
9 God opened the heavens and came down.
Dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He sat on a cherub and he flew.
God flew in the arms of the wind.
11 God covered himself with darkness.
He was in the dark waters and clouds in the skies.
12 It was very bright where God was.
Out of the clouds came hail and lightning.
13 The LORD sent thunder from the heavens.
People heard the voice of the Most High.
There was hail and there was lightning.
14 The LORD shot his arrows of lightning.
He made his enemies very frightened.
He sent a lot of lightning and he beat his enemies.
18:14Verses 8-14: God gave David help by sending a great storm. The home of God is in heaven. The Jews believed that heaven was above the sky. David thought that the storm was God coming down to earth. God made people afraid.
15 People saw how deep the sea was.
They saw the foundations of the earth.
This was because the LORD blew on them through his nose.
18:15Verse 15: The earthquake and the storm were so bad that people saw:
– Under the mountains
– Under the sea
16 The LORD came down to me. He held me.
He took me out from deep waters.
17 He saved me from my powerful enemy.
He saved me from people that hated me.
They were too strong for me.
18 It was a bad day for me when I met them.
But the LORD gave me help.
19 He led me out to a wide place.
He saved me because he found pleasure in me.
18:19Verses 16-19: God used earthquakes and storms to give help to David. God saved David from danger. God put David in a safe place.
Part 4: Why God gives help to people
20-21 The LORD did this because:
· I am righteous
· my hands are clean
· I obeyed the rules of the LORD
· I did no evil
· I did not turn away from God
22 Really, all his rules are in front of me.
I did not turn away from them
23 I did nothing wrong before him.
I did no sin.
18:23Verses 20-23: When we are Christians, we must become like this. God sees that we are clean. Now we must show everybody else.
24 The LORD made me righteous.
My hands are clean when he looks at me.
18:24Verse 24: This is the most important part of the psalm for Christians. What happens when we become Christians? Psalm 18:24 tells us. God makes us righteous. This means that we are clean when God looks at us and that we are his friends as well.
25 To people that are kind, you God are kind.
To people that do nothing wrong, you do nothing wrong.
26 To people that are clean, you are clean.
To people that turn away from you, you turn away from them.
27 You will save humble people.
You will not save people unless they are humble.
Part 5: Everything that David owns comes from God
28 LORD, you make my light burn brightly.
My God is my light in the dark.
29 Really, in you I run up to a troop of soldiers.
In my God, I can jump over a wall.
18:29Verse 29: The wall is probably the wall of Jerusalem. David and his soldiers fought the troop inside Jerusalem. David won.
30 The way of God is perfect.
The word of the LORD is true.
He is a shield for everyone that hides in him.
31 Because who is God? Only the LORD!
Who is a rock? Only our God!
32 It is in God that I am strong.
He makes my way perfect.
33 He makes my feet like the feet of a goat.
I do not fall on the hills.
34 He teaches my hands to fight.
My arms can bend a metal bow.
18:34Verse 34: David was very strong to bend a metal bow.
35 God you made me into a winner.
You bent down to earth. You made me great.
36 You made me take long steps.
My ankles did not turn.
18:36Verse 36: This is because David has feet that can run like a wild animal.
37 I ran after my enemies. I caught them.
I did not turn back until I had killed them.
38 I knocked them down. They did not get up again.
They fell beneath my feet.
39 You made me strong for fighting.
You made my enemies bend in front of me.
40 You gave their necks to me.
I destroyed my enemies.
18:40Verse 40: Hundreds of years ago, men put their feet on the necks of people that they beat.
41 They cried for help but nobody saved them.
They cried to the LORD but he did not answer.
42 I cut them into small pieces in the wind.
I put them on the streets as sand.
Part 6: God made David king
43 You saved me from the people that attacked me.
You made me the leader of the nations.
I even rule people that I do not know.
44 When they hear about me they obey me.
Foreign people are afraid of me.
45 They will not fight me.
They do not hide in their fortresses.
46 The LORD is alive. praise my Rock.
Lift high the God that saves me.
47 He is the God that fights for me.
He makes the nations obey me.
48 He saves me from my enemies.
You lifted me above those enemies.
You saved me from angry men.
49 LORD, I will praise you in all the nations.
I will praise your name with songs.
50 The LORD will give his king great power.
He will always show kindness to his Messiah, to David.
He will show kindness to his children.
18:50Verse 50: Messiah in the psalm means David. To Christians it means Jesus. Nathan told David that God would always be kind to David and to his children. Nathan was a prophet like Samuel. David's children were the kings that came later. The last one was (and still is) Jesus.