- According to this psalm what are the indispensable conditions for enjoying the forgiveness of God? Cf. Prov. 28:13.
- What great blessings does the forgiven soul receive, filling the heart with joy? What conditions of their continued enjoyment are laid down? Are you fulfilling these conditions?
This psalm begins where Ps. 32 left off. The Hebrew word translated ‘rejoice’ in verse 1 is the same as that translated ‘shout for joy’ in Ps. 32:11.
- The call to praise (verses 1-3) is followed by reasons for praise (verses 4-19). What are these, and do they help you to join in praising God?
- What reasons are given as to why the nation whose God is the Lord is blessed above other nations? What is the psalmist’ response to this (verses 20-22)?
Note. Verse 3. ‘A new song’: the song of the redeemed. Cf. Ps. 40:3. ‘Play skillfully’: Good advice for all who aspire to lead the praises of God’s people
This is a psalm that shines with new light when we know the probable circumstances of the time when it was composed. See the psalm heading and 1 Sam. 21:10 – 22:2. Perhaps it was sung in the cave of Adullam for the instruction of David’s followers.
- Who are those who may expect the Lord’s blessings? Note the various ways in which these people are described. Are we ourselves entitled to claim blessings on the same ground?
- Make a numbered list (avoiding repetition) of the blessings God gives to his people, as stated in this psalm
- The psalm falls into three division, each ending with a promise to give God thanks. Discover these sections, and given to each an appropriate heading, summarizing its contents.
- David gives a vivid picture of the vigour, subtlety and malice of his persecutors, and reacts against them with equal vigour. What is the main cry of his heart, and on what grounds does he plead? In what respects is he an example to us?
- Verses 4-6. Concerning this and similar prayers in the psalms, see NBD, p. 984.
- Verses 11 and 12. Malicious insinuations were made against David, which had never even entered his mind. Cf. 1 Sam. 24:9, 17.