Daily email Number 420 – from the Vicar

Welcome to Thursday and this morning we move on to Psalm 34.
The introductory words tell us that this Psalm was written at a particular point in David’s life, when he pretended to be insane.  You can find this story in 1 Samuel Chapter 21 verses 10-15, although the name mentioned there is King Achish, so probably Abimelech is more of a royal name for the Philistine kings.
What struck me as I read this Psalm again is how positive and upbeat it is, considering the dangerous circumstances David was in – not just the fulsome praise at the beginning, but the godly instruction to others (from v.8 onwards) about how to live in the right way and to depend on the Lord.
The Psalm is an acrostic poem, which means each verse begins with successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet, with a couple of exceptions, so one writer has called this Psalm an ABC for a crisis!
So after David’s praise and testimony (vs.1-7) he encourages his people to ‘taste and see’ for themselves, and then gives instructions on how to live a good life (vs.11-14), how to face troubles (vs.15-18), and the truth of the Lord’s deliverance of the righteous (vs.19-22).
We see some of this Psalm reappear in the New Testament as Peter in his first letter quotes verses 12-16 to encourage his own readers to live a godly life in difficult circumstances (1 Peter Ch.3 verses 10-12) and John in his Gospel quotes verse 20 of this Psalm about bones not being broken when he gives a detail of Jesus’ crucifixion (Ch.19 v.36) implying that Jesus is the ultimate righteous man, which of course He is.
For a musical version which covers most of this Psalm, we have the hymn, Through all the changing scenes of life, and you can find a sung version here, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVJxhapcj6o
Enjoy!
In our cycle of prayer, let us remember today in our prayers,- Sharon and family- Roger, Sue and Daniel

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