Psalm 44:1-26 … THE PSALMIST REMEMBERS PAST VICTORIES AND LONGS FOR MORE.
Q.1. What does the psalmist remember about Israel’s past? How did Israel push back its enemies? Does he believe God can do it again? What does he resolve to do? – (Ps.44:1-8) =
Q.2. What was the psalmist’s lament? Why were Israel’s circumstances hard to bear? What prompted the psalmist to stay true to God? What was his heart’s cry to God? – (Ps.44:9-26) =
Come to Our Help
To the choirmaster. A Maskil[a] of the Sons of Korah.
44 O God, we have heard with our ears,
our fathers have told us,
what deeds you performed in their days,
in the days of old:
2 you with your own hand drove out the nations,
but them you planted;
you afflicted the peoples,
but them you set free;
3 for not by their own sword did they win the land,
nor did their own arm save them,
but your right hand and your arm,
and the light of your face,
for you delighted in them.
4 You are my King, O God;
ordain salvation for Jacob!
5 Through you we push down our foes;
through your name we tread down those who rise up against us.
6 For not in my bow do I trust,
nor can my sword save me.
7 But you have saved us from our foes
and have put to shame those who hate us.
8 In God we have boasted continually,
and we will give thanks to your name forever. Selah
9 But you have rejected us and disgraced us
and have not gone out with our armies.
10 You have made us turn back from the foe,
and those who hate us have gotten spoil.
11 You have made us like sheep for slaughter
and have scattered us among the nations.
12 You have sold your people for a trifle,
demanding no high price for them.
13 You have made us the taunt of our neighbors,
the derision and scorn of those around us.
14 You have made us a byword among the nations,
a laughingstock[b] among the peoples.
15 All day long my disgrace is before me,
and shame has covered my face
16 at the sound of the taunter and reviler,
at the sight of the enemy and the avenger.
17 All this has come upon us,
though we have not forgotten you,
and we have not been false to your covenant.
18 Our heart has not turned back,
nor have our steps departed from your way;
19 yet you have broken us in the place of jackals
and covered us with the shadow of death.
20 If we had forgotten the name of our God
or spread out our hands to a foreign god,
21 would not God discover this?
For he knows the secrets of the heart.
22 Yet for your sake we are killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.
23 Awake! Why are you sleeping, O Lord?
Rouse yourself! Do not reject us forever!
24 Why do you hide your face?
Why do you forget our affliction and oppression?
25 For our soul is bowed down to the dust;
our belly clings to the ground.
26 Rise up; come to our help!
Redeem us for the sake of your steadfast love!
Q.1. What does the psalmist remember about Israel’s past? How did Israel push back its enemies? Does he believe God can do it again? What does he resolve to do? – (Ps.44:1-8) = The psalmist begins with Israel’s history – O God, we have heard with our ears, our fathers have told us the work that You did in their days, in the days of old (Ps.44:1). This psalm indicates that this is not the present experience of God’s people. He gives recognition to God for this and declares – 2 You with Your own hand drove out the nations … 3 For by their own sword they did not possess the land, and their own arm did not save them, but Your right hand and Your arm and the light of Your presence, for You favoured them (Ps.44:2-3). He is in no doubt that God can do it again, – 4 You are my King, O God … 5 Through You we will push back our adversaries … (Ps.44:4-5). In the light of this – In God we have boasted all day long, And we will give thanks to Your name forever (Ps.44:8), and believes there is nothing wrong with what God has done.
Q.2. What was the psalmist’s lament? Why were Israel’s circumstances hard to bear? What prompted the psalmist to stay true to God? What was his heart’s cry to God? – (Ps.44:9-26) = Yet he must face the reality of the here and now – 9 Yet You have rejected us and brought us to dishonour, and do not go out with our armies. 10 You cause us to turn back from the adversary; And those who hate us have taken spoil for themselves (Ps.44:9-10). What the psalmist hates most is the ridicule to which Israel was exposed (Ps.44:13-16). He reminds the Lord that they have maintained their faithfulness to Him in spite of their circumstances. – 20 If we had forgotten the name of our God or extended our hands to a strange god, 21 Would not God find this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart (Ps.44:20-21). He ruefully complains – for Your sake we are killed all day long; We are considered as sheep to be slaughtered (Ps.44:22). Paul quotes this to contrast the trials of life compared with the overwhelming victory we have through the love of Christ (c.f. Rom.8:36). Out of these depths of despair and feelings of rejection his heart cries out – Rise up, be our help, and redeem us for the sake of Your lovingkindness (Ps.44:26 c.f. Rom.8:31-39).
(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)
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