A Prayer for Help, and Praise for Its Answer
A Psalm of David
28:1 To You, Lord [the more we love the Lord the more earnestly we will seek Him and the more we will hate being away from Him], I call [an expression of dependence; the creature crying out to the Creator; the earnestness of our cry can be measured by the severity of the need or threat];
My rock [God is strong], do not be deaf to me,
For if You are silent to me [the worst case scenario],
I will become like those who go down to the pit [“What a dreadful case should we be in if the Lord should become forever silent to our prayers!” CH Spurgeon].
28:2 Hear [the psalmist longed to know that God would hear and respond to his cry] the sound of my pleadings [the psalmist understood that his hope was dependent on God hearing and responding to his cries] when I cry to You [To whom do we cry for help and when?] for help,
When I raise my hands [like a beggar, David raised empty hands in eager expectation] toward Your holy sanctuary [the place that represented the presence of God].
Note: Things that hinder our prayers and may cause God to not hear us.
• Unconfessed sin | Psalm 66:18-19; Prov. 28:9
• Regarding idols in our heart | Ezekiel 14:7-8
• Refusing to forgive others | Mark 11:25; Matthew 5:23-24
• Ignoring the cries of the poor for help | Proverbs 21:13
• Asking amiss | James 4:3; Matthew 6:7
• Asking in unbelief | James 1:6-8; Matthew 21:22
• Clinging to disobedience | Zechariah 7:11-13
• Family (marital) discord | 1 Peter 3:7
• Not asking | James 4:2
28:3 Do not drag me away with the wicked [the fate of the wicked is different than that of the righteous (cf. Ps. 1:5-6)]
And with those who practice injustice [see Prov. 6:16-19 re: the things that God hates],
Who speak peace [deceptively] with their neighbors,
While evil is in their hearts.
28:4 Give back to them [God hates and must punish sin] according to their work and according to the evil of their practices [cf. Col. 3:25];
Give back to them according to the work of their hands;
Repay them what is due them.
28:5 Because they do not regard the works of the Lord
Nor the deeds of His hands,
He will tear them down and not build them up.
C. Intercession and Praise
28:6 [David’s prayer turned to praise] Blessed be the Lord [David again turned his attention to God],
Because He has heard the sound of my pleading.
28:7 The Lord is my strength and my shield [cf. Ps. 3:3; a defensive piece of equipment; the Lord is an impenetrable shield];
My heart trusts in Him, and [trusting God precedes help] I am helped;
Therefore my heart triumphs,
And with my song [our gratitude for the kindness of the Lord to us should ascend to heaven in our songs of praise] I shall thank Him [the response of one who is grateful].
28:8 The Lord is their strength,
And He is a refuge [a place of safety from threats and dangers] of salvation to His anointed.
28:9 Save Your people and bless Your inheritance;
Be their shepherd also, and carry [as a shepherd carries a lamb] them forever.