David Knew He Needed Guidance From God
Having reviewed the attributes of God, focusing on His sovereignty and goodness, David examines himself.
But as for me, by Your great loving-kindness, I will come into Your house. At Your holy house I will put my face to the ground before You in love and fear.
Psalm 5:7 (NLV)
Verse 7 begins with a strong contrast. The Hebrew is exceptionally strong, literally: “But as for me!” In contrast to those whom the Lord would destroy (v. 6), David enjoyed a spiritual position, which is mentioned in the latter part of verse 7 as “Your holy house,” or “Your holy temple,” a poetic reference to intimate fellowship with the Lord.
Notice that David wasn’t approaching the Lord on the basis of justice. He didn’t deserve God’s favor. No one does (Romans 3:10 and 23). But through mercy and grace, we can all approach the throne of God boldly (Hebrews 4:16).
Because he wasn’t a member of the tribe of Levi, David couldn’t actually enter the tabernacle as could the priests, but he used that phrase to describe his approach to the Lord. David was in the wilderness, but he came to the Lord with the kind of awe that the priests and Levites displayed in the tabernacle. In the worship of our great God, there’s no place for cuteness and flippancy. For believers to enter into the presence of God to worship and pray, it cost Jesus His life (Heb. 10:19-20), and to treat this privilege lightly is to cheapen that sacrifice. David knew he needed guidance from God, for he had to put the kingdom back together again. (See James 1:5)
O Lord, lead me in what is right and good, because of the ones who hate me. Make Your way straight in front of me.
Psalm 5:8 (NLV)
Notice that David wanted to do what was right in God’s sight. Most people are all about pleasing others so they can get their acceptance now, but truly godly people are thinking long-term about pleasing God.
Verse 8 is the major prayer of the song. Everything before this verse could be considered preliminary. Here’s the kernel of his request: “Leave me in what is right and good, because of the ones who hate me. Make Your way straight in front of me.”
What does this mean?
David didn’t want to resort to the tactics of his enemies, so he prayed that the Lord would lead him throughout the conflict, causing him to do things God’s way. He wanted to follow God’s righteous way, first and foremost. Not too many years later, the princely prophet, Isaiah, spoke to Israel on behalf of God:
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and My ways are not your ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
Isaiah 55:8-9 (NLV)
When discouraged, we naturally pray for relief… we beg the Lord to act on our behalf.
What if, instead, we asked for the opportunity to do something for Him?
How might our perspective change if we began to see ourselves as agents of God’s will, acting on His behalf and carrying out His desires, rather than always expecting Him to serve us?
DECLARATION OF FAITH
Because of the multitude of my Father’s mercies, I can come boldly into His presence. In deep reverence and respect I worship Him and send my praise before His throne.
My Father leads me in His righteousness because of my enemies and makes His way straight before me. He does not allow them to overtake me in any way.
I pray this declaration of faith in Jesus’ name!