FACING THE “SPIN CYCLES” OF LIFE

(Psalm 37)

Mike Johnson

Consider the following story about a boy who wanted to wash his cat.

The little boy went to the store and bought some Tide detergent.  The cashier said to the boy, “It’s nice of you to run errands for your parents. Do you do the laundry at your house?” The little boy said, “I’m not doing laundry. I’m washing my cat.” The cashier explained to the boy that Tide was not good for washing cats…but the boy refused to listen. The next time the boy came to the store, the cashier asked him, “How’s your cat?” The boy hung his head in sadness. He said, “My cat died.” The cashier said, “I’m sorry to hear that your cat died. Did it die from the Tide you washed it with?” The boy said, “No. I don’t think the Tide killed my cat. I think it was the spin cycle.”

In life, there are times when everything goes well.  But, there are other times when we are bombarded with hardships and difficulties which can even come in waves.  Sometimes, we are overcome by what might be called the “Spin Cycles” of life.  During such a time, we would do well to read Psalm 37, which can be of so much value when facing the tumults of life.  Not only is this Psalm important as we deal with current upheavals which may exist in our lives, but it is also important in preparation for future obstacles.

First, consider some basic facts about this Psalm.

  1. It is attributed to David. Based on verse 25, it was written during the later part of his life when he was aged.
  2. Parts of the Psalm read like a proverb. It consists of many short, wise sayings contrasting the righteous and the unrighteous.
  3. It warns about being “fretful” three times in the early part of the Psalm.
  4. It speaks of “inheriting the earth” three times, and two of those times speak of the “meek” inheriting the earth.
  5. It has a lot of repetition, expressing the same concepts but in different words.
  6. It is full of contrasts between the way the righteous are to be and the way evil people are. It reveals the outcome for both.

What is the main focus of this Psalm?  Consider an overview according to the Pulpit Commentary which says, “The object of the poem is to reassure men whose minds are disturbed by the fact of the frequent prosperity of the wicked, to convince them that in every case retribution will overtake the ungodly man at the last, and to impress upon them that the condition of the righteous, even when they suffer, is far preferable to that of the wicked, whatever prosperity they may enjoy.”

The Psalm can be divided into three parts:  1. Exhortations for the Righteous (1-8), 2. Contrast of the Wicked and Righteous (9-29), 3. Council for the Righteous (30-40).

Exhortations for the Righteous (1-8)

Verses 1-2 say, “Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, And wither as the green herb.”

When we think of the word “fret,” we may think of someone who is constantly or excessively worrying or is frequently anxious. However, the Hebrew word used here (charah) means, “to be hot, to be furious, to burn, to become angry, to be kindled” (The Online Bible Thayer’s Greek Lexicon and Brown Driver & Briggs Hebrew Lexicon).  In the text, most translators translate the Hebrew word as “fret.”  Elsewhere, however, it is translated with such words as “wrath,” “anger,” “hot,” or “kindled.”  Various modern translations may translate it by words “annoyed” or “upset.”  Thus, the idea is to not be angry or “worked up” regarding evil doers, or be envious of them (1b). Why would someone be tempted to react this way?   It is because of the prosperity and, seemingly, good life. Jeremiah asked, in Jeremiah 12:1 “…Why does the way of the wicked prosper? Why are those happy who deal so treacherously?”

There are times when God’s people face many difficulties in life.  Like others, Christians can face money problems, mistreatment, illnesses, the death of loved ones, and relationship issues. Yet evil doers, people who make no pretense to serve God, seem to not be experiencing such issues, as everything appears to be going well for them. God’s followers, looking at the prosperity of evil people, might tend to get discouraged.  This discouragement is especially seen when EVERYTHING seems to be going wrong, and they hit “rock-bottom.” However, it is ridiculous to be envious of evil doers.

Verse 2 points out that these evil doers will soon be “cut down like the green grass,” and they will “wither” as the “green herb.”  Their prosperity only lasts for this short life.  Righteous people, however, have much more going for them.  It is as Solomon expressed in Proverbs 24:19-20, “Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the wicked; for there will be no prospect for the evil man; the lamp of the wicked will be put out.”

Sometimes, a Christian might contemplate how nice it would be to swap places with another person. Although that person may be living a life of ease, perhaps being wealthy or even famous, swapping places with an evil person would not be wise as their days of pleasure are short. It might be said that this world is as close to heaven as they will ever be.  With the righteous, however, their days may be full of toil and strife, but they have a glorious future beyond this life, and, in fact, their earthly existence is as close to Hell as they will ever be.

After showing the importance of not having anxiety, anger, and envy because of the prosperity of evil people, David points out what might be called “Five Steps to Peace” in verses 3-8.  These are “medicines” against fretting and anxiety.  This is the path to peace.

Trust in the Lord and Do Good

Verse 3 says, “Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.” Thus, instead of fretting over the prosperity of evil people, the first step for God’s people is to trust in the Lord and to keep busy doing good.  The Hebrew word translated “trust” can be defined as, “A verb indicating to trust, to be confident. It expresses the feeling of safety and security that is felt when one relies on someone or something else. It is used to show trust in God…in other people…or in things…In addition, this expression can also relate to the state of being confident, secure, without fear…” (The Complete Word Study Dictionary: Old Testament).  This idea is also expressed in Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” (Note also Ps. 9:10; 4:5.)

In the text (3b), he also says to “do good.”  Doing good is often associated with trusting in God.  Recall on another occasion when Nehemiah and the people were rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem and Tobiah, an antagonist started ridiculing them (Neh. 4:3-6).  How did they respond?  They prayed and they kept working. We should do this today at all times but especially when we are facing the challenges of life.  We must trust God and keep busy!

In the later part of verse 3, a blessing is attached.  If we trust in God and “do good,” we can “dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.”  For the children of Israel, the land would refer to the Promised Land, the land of Canaan (Is. 1:19). If they would trust God and “do good,” then God would “feed them” with physical blessings such as food and clothing. How do we “feed” on God’s faithfulness?  We feed upon God’s faithfulness by having full assurance that He is willing and able to keep His promises.

Delight in the Lord

 Verse 4 says, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Found here is the next step for peace, which is to delight in the Lord. The word found in the original (anag) carries with it the idea of something delicate or soft that someone would take pleasure in (The Complete Word Study Dictionary). Here it involves the idea of taking pleasure and delight in God.  The verse says, “delight yourself,” so there is a choice involved and the concept of effort and commitment.

What does it mean today to take delight in something or someone?  It involves the idea of being excited (thrilled, energized) when people are doing what they really want to do or when they are with someone they really love.  What do you take great delight in today?  Many take great delight in sports.  They cannot wait for the season to start, and they eagerly anticipate the start of the big game.  When the game is over, they talk about it with others.  Truly, they delight in sports.  Others may delight in television, wealth, shopping, eating, or their computer. It is good to have various hobbies and endeavors we enjoy.  Primarily, however, as the text says, we should delight in the Lord!  For us, God produces delight, pleasure, and happiness.  If we delight in the Lord, the result should be a joyful interest in things of a spiritual nature.

Consider as an example King David. He was truly a person who delighted in the Lord for much of his life. Consider the various ways he showed this delight.

  1. BY DOING GOD’S WILL – David wrote in Psalm 40:8, “I delight to do Your will, O my God, And Your law is within my heart.” (Note also Pb. 16:8-9.) It would be very difficult for a person to delight in the Lord if he were not actively involved in obeying Him.  A person in sin and rebellion often does not even feel comfortable having a conversation about God.  Sin puts a “cloud” over his relationship with God.  If we are going to delight in the Lord, we must have an earnest desire to obey Him and be willing to turn away from sin.
  2. BY MEDITATING ON THE SCRIPTURES – He wrote in Psalm 1:1-2, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.” How much do we think about the Scriptures? Are our thoughts about the Scriptures just confined to church services? When we “delight in the Lord,” we will think about God’s Law often.
  3. BY BEING ABSORBED IN HIS WORD – David also wrote Psalm 119, which focuses very much on the Word of God. In verse 16, he stated, “I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word.”  In verse 47, he said, “And I will delight myself in Your commandments, Which I love.” (Please also note verses 24, 35, and 77.)  Are our minds more absorbed with politics, sports, and entertainment than with God’s Word?   If people delight in the Lord, they should be, as we say today, “all about” the Scriptures.
  4. BY PRAYING – In Psalm 55:16-17 he said, “As for me, I will call upon God, and the Lord shall save me. Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice.” David prayed regularly. It would seem reasonable that if we take delight in the Lord, we would pray a lot, i.e. we would want to communicate with our Creator. In the New Testament, we are told to “pray without ceasing” (I Thess. 5:17), and to “continue steadfastly in prayer” (Rom. 12:12).
  5. BY ASSEMBLING – In Psalm 122:1, David said, “I was glad when they said unto me, ‘Let us go into the house of the Lord.’” In Psalm 16:11, he said, “You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Note also Is.58:13-14 where the writer called the Sabbath Day a “delight.”)  A person who delights in the Lord will assemble for worship.
  6. BY SINGING PRAISES – In Psalm 59:16, he points out, “But I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense And refuge in the day of my trouble.” Singing is a command (Eph. 5:19, Col. 3:16), but it is a great opportunity for worship, and we should be “delighted” to sing praises to God.

Going back to verse 4b, we see a blessing attached to delighting in the Lord.  It says if we trust in the Lord, He will give us the “desires of our heart.”  Some interpret this to mean if we trust in the Lord, He will give us anything we want such as luxuries, wealth, and power. However, this is not talking about superficial earthly desires to have more.  I Timothy 6:6 says, “Now godliness with contentment is great gain.”  I John 2:15-17 points out we are not to love the world or the things in the world. The passage in our text is consistent with the New Testament teaching on prayer. In the New Testament, we are given assurances regarding prayer (Mt. 7:7-11), but we also learn there are conditions of acceptable prayer (I Pet. 3:12, James 5:16-18). It is not saying if we delight in the Lord, He will give us any luxury we ask for.  Instead, as in the New Testament, God knows our needs, we pray to Him, and His response will be in keeping with what is best for us.

We have a tendency to get discouraged. We see moral decay with little interest in spirituality.  Perhaps the stock market is down, the economy is bad, and we see war and violence throughout the world. This bleakness can result in despair, but regardless of what is happening around us, we should always delight in the Lord.  Corrie Ten Bloom put it like this.

Look around, you’ll be distressed. 

Look within, you’ll be depressed,

Look to the Lord, you’ll be at rest.

 

Thus, do not get angry and envious because of the prosperity of evil people; instead, rejoice in the Lord.

Commit Our Way to the Lord and Trust Him

 Verses 5-6 says, “Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass. (6) He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, And your justice as the noonday.”

The third step to peace is to commit our way to the Lord and trust God. As noted, we really cannot delight in the Lord if we are unwilling to obey Him.  Another way to say this is found in verse 5.  We must “commit our way” (our course of life) to Him, and we must “trust” Him.

Consider the meaning of the Hebrew word translated “commit.” The root meaning involves the idea of “roll” and refers to the “rolling of a stone.” Consider the following definition.  “It can also describe abstract concepts, such as reproach being rolled off (removed) from someone (Ps 119:22) or one’s ways and works rolled onto (committed, entrusted) to someone (especially God)…” (The Complete Word Study Dictionary: Old Testament). Thus, it might be said we are to roll off the burdens of life onto the Lord. Consider I Peter 5:6-7: “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”  We must commit our lives to the Lord and trust Him to take care of us.  As we handle the burdens of life, we give God the credit.  Verse 6 shows a blessing which will follow. It points out that God will vindicate those who commit their way to Him, and He will make them shine like a bright sun.

Rest in the Lord and Wait

 Verse 7 says, “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.”

The fourth step to obtain peace is to rest in the Lord and patiently wait. The word translated “rest” means “to be silent, to be still, to stand still.” (The Complete Word Study Dictionary).   The prosperity of the wicked might produce a dilemma for followers of God. The evil doer may prosper while engaging in wicked schemes.  Those who are God’s people are not to fret, get angry, or envy.  Instead, they are to remain silent and patiently wait for God. (See also Ps. 46:10, Ex. 14:13-14, Rom. 8:38-39.)

Cease to be Angry

 Verse 8 says, ““Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret — it only causes harm.”  This is the last step for peace. In the context, this is saying to stop being angry about the prosperity and seemingly good life of evil doers. Unresolved anger can fester and lead to bitterness and hurtful actions. Therefore, do not be fretful regarding evil doers, and do not be angry with God.  Ultimately, for the righteous, everything will work out. It has been put like this: “We may not be able to control what happens in our lives, but we can control how we respond to what happens.”

It is very important to put away the anger and anxiety, which may come when we face the various “spin cycles.”  We can do this by following these “medicines” for peace.

Contrasting the Wicked and the Righteous (9-29)

Verses 9-11 say, “(9) For evildoers shall be cut off; But those who wait on the Lord, They shall inherit the earth. (10) For yet a little while and the wicked shall be no more; Indeed, you will look carefully for his place, But it shall be no more. (11) But the meek shall inherit the earth, And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.”

These verses express a concept found many different times and in many different ways throughout the rest of the Psalm.  The idea is that bad consequences will follow for the evil doer and contrasting blessings will occur for the follower of God.

We learn the evil doers will be “cut off,” and their “place” shall “be no more.” In contrast, believers, described as “meek” and those who “wait on the Lord,” shall “inherit the earth.”

Consider the term “meek.” Holman Bible Dictionary defines it as, “A personality trait of gentleness and humility, the opposite of which is pride. Meekness does not refer to weakness or passivity but to controlled power. Aristotle described meekness as “the middle position between excessive anger and an excessive lack of anger.”  Meekness has been described as “gentleness in strength” and “force under the control of faith.” Those characterized by meekness will, in the midst of the righteous suffering and evil doers prospering, patiently wait on the Lord, hold on, refrain from anger, and understand the situation will change (Note also 7a).

There are two blessings promised for those who meekly wait on the Lord.  First, is they will “inherit the earth.”  This phrase probably had its origin with the children of Israel being promised the land of Canaan. (It is commonly translated, “inherit the land.”) The promise never involved the concept of owning all of the land of the earth.  The phrase came to refer to all the benefits and blessings of the earth.  Later, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught in Matthew 5:5, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” Barnes, in his commentary, says it was used “as a proverbial expression to denote any great blessing, perhaps as the sum of all blessings” (Barnes’ Notes).  A second benefit for the meek and those who wait on the Lord is that they would “delight themselves in the abundance of peace.” Meek people are more likely to have peace in this life with regard to others.  More importantly they will have an inner peace (being in a proper relationship with God), and ultimately the eternal peace of heaven.

In verses 12-20 there is a continuation of the wicked being contrasted with the righteous. The verses show the futility of the wicked and assurances are given to the righteous.

From these verses, note how the wicked are described.

  1. They plot against the just (12a). They lay out plans and schemes against the righteous.
  2. They gnash at the righteous with their teeth (12b). Note how David describes the viciousness of his attackers in Psalm 35:15-16 when he said, “But in my adversity they rejoiced and gathered together; Attackers gathered against me, and I did not know it; they tore at me and did not cease. With ungodly mockers at feasts they gnashed at me with their teeth.” In the New Testament (Acts 7:54), after hearing Stephen’s scathing sermon, the people were “cut to the heart,” and “they gnashed at him with their teeth.”  This phrase means figuratively “to have great anger towards someone.” Although a person might be so angry, he is literally grinding his teeth.
  3. They use their weapons to cast down the poor and needy who are upright (14). It is not that they have a personal grudge against the upright, but they cast them down because they are righteous and are poor, needy, and defenseless. (Note also I Pet. 4:3-5.)
  4. They borrow and do not repay (21). Perhaps they are as reckless about borrowing as they are about repaying.

Consider also some assurances regarding the righteous found in this section:

  1. The Lord upholds the righteous (17). The effort of the wicked will be thwarted, and God will be there for the righteous. John Gill points out that the Lord upholds the righteous “…both in a providential way, by supporting them in their being, supplying their need, preserving them from dangers, and bearing them up under all their afflictions…” (from John Gill’s Exposition of the Old and New Testaments).
  2. The Lord knows the days of the upright (18). God knows how long the righteous (and everyone else) will live and what will happen to them in the future.  God can see the entire span of their lives. If God has determined a person will live a certain number of years, nothing can stop this from happening.  God lovingly watches over those who are His.
  3. Unlike the wicked, the upright show mercy, and gives. (21b). The righteous have received mercy and are even more inclined to bestow it on others. This is not speaking of lending but giving.  If possible, it is better to give than to loan (Pb. 22:7, Ps. 37:26).
  4. The righteous will inherit the earth (22). They receive the benefits and blessings of the earth.

We are also told the fate of evil doers in these verses, which is stated in many different ways.  We are told they will be no more; their day is coming; their weapons will be used against them; their arms will be broken; they will perish and vanish away.  All of their efforts against the righteous will be futile.

Verse 16 says, “A little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked.”  This verse is more like a proverb.  The Bible does not teach it is wrong to be rich.  Various righteous individuals are cited as being wealthy, such as Abraham, Lot, Job, Zacchaeus, and Joseph of Arimathea.  David was also wealthy, so he could have made this statement from personal experience.  The contrast here is between a righteous person having little and a wicked person having much.  Consider some similar passages. Proverbs 15:16-17 says, “Better is a little with the fear of the Lord, than great treasure with trouble. Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a fatted calf with hatred.” Proverbs 16:8 says, “Better is a little with righteousness, than vast revenues without justice.”

What if someone today, who has little, has the opportunity to swap places with a wealthy person?  Would they do it?  The answer would normally be “yes.”  What if the one who has little is righteous and the wicked person is wealthy, and there was no way to change this. Would the poor person still swap places?  In some cases, the answer would still be “yes.”  However, “swapping places” would be very unwise for the poor person.  It would be much better to live our lives on this earth poor and then be saved eternally than it would be to have riches and be lost eternally.  The righteous person is laying up treasures in heaven (Mt. 6:19-21) and after a less comfortable life on earth has the joys of heaven waiting for him.

Verses 23-24 says, “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, And He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand.”

The word rendered “ordered” means to “make firm.”  Some interpret this to mean God “makes firm” (i.e., takes care of) a good man in the course of his life. The NIV translates it, “If the Lord delights in a man’s way, he makes his steps firm.”  (This interpretation fits verse 24.)  Another way to view this verse is that a person who is doing what he is supposed to allows his life to be directed by God, and he will then consider what the Lord has to say before he acts (Ps. 1:1-3).  Both principles are valid.

Verse 24 helps us to realize the following concept.  There are times we stumble and may be down, but this situation is not permanent as God will be there to pick us up if we let Him. In 2 Corinthians 4:7-9, Paul points out, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.

Consider verses 25-26 which say, “I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lends; and his descendants are blessed.”  David had lived a long time, and he had seen a lot, but he had never seen the righteous forsaken. In addition, he had never seen the descendants of a righteous person begging, and they even had enough to give to others.

Is a righteous person ever forsaken?  No, and he never will be forsaken by God even though sometimes a person may feel he has been.  Even Jesus said on the cross, (Mt. 27:46), no doubt feeling alone, “… My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  God will never forsake the righteous person.  Consider what Moses told Israel in Deuteronomy 31:6 when he said, “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”  This same statement was made by God to Joshua when he took over for Moses (Josh. 1:5) and was made by David to Solomon when he took over as king (1 Chron. 28:20), and it is quoted in Hebrews 13:5. In David’s life, he had never seen a righteous person forsaken by God, and neither will we.  It will not happen.

How about the statement (25b) David made regarding never having seen the descendents of a righteous person begging?  In a literal sense, David may not have personally seen this.  Thus, this may have been an accurate observation of what David personally witnessed.  Yet, this might be intended in a general (proverbial) sense.  The assumption is that a righteous person would teach his children to be industrious and hard working, which diminishes the possibility of their having to beg.  Further, these descendents would associate with righteous people who could help them as well if necessary. Thus, the children of a righteous person will receive the benefits of their upbringing.

Note verses 27-29 which say, Depart from evil, and do good; And dwell forevermore. For the Lord loves justice, and does not forsake His saints; They are preserved forever, But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell in it forever.”  These verses might be called a summation of the entire Psalm.  They emphasize that the followers of good are to patiently endure while continuing to pursue righteousness.  There will be positive consequences for the righteous and negative consequences for the wicked.  Emphasized here again is that certain actions will result in certain consequences. Results, in the Scriptures, are often emphasized to get people to do right. Further, righteous people must understand that God will never forsake them!

Council for the Righteous (30-40)

 Next, note verses 30-38, which give some admonitions for the righteous.

  1. They are to speak wisdom and justice (30). The wisdom of a righteous person is from above (James 3:13-17, I Cor. 1:18-25) as opposed to earthly wisdom. A righteous person meditates on the law of the Lord (Ps. 1:2) which is where this wisdom is obtained and then speaks of God’s justice to others.
  2. They have God’s Law in their heart (31a). Even though they live in a wicked world where evil people seem to prosper, they keep God’s law in their heart. What is in the heart is important, since this is where our actions come from (Mt. 12:35, 15:19).
  3. They must not let their steps slide (31b). God’s law is in their hearts, and they speak of God’s wisdom and justice.  This can keep them from faltering.  If they do, the Lord is there to lift them up (24).
  4. They must wait on the Lord (34). This has already been stated in verses 7 and 9. Thus, be patient; depend on Him; do not grow discouraged.
  5. They must keep His Way (34). God’s Way is revealed in the Scriptures.  It is important to realize that waiting on the Lord involves keeping His Way.  We do so no matter what happens- in times of prosperity and poverty, in good health and poor health, when times are easy and when times are difficult.
  6. They note blameless and upright people (37). We learn and gain lessons from the examples of others (I Pet. 3:2, I Cor. 11:1). In the business world, there is an often repeated theme: “if you want to be successful in business, follow those who are successful.” The same principle is true from a spiritual standpoint. We must look to the examples of righteous people, i.e. observe, and learn from them.  Their future is “peace” (37b). Evil workers have no real future; they are like plants, (v. 2) and their fate is full of doom (34b-36, 38).

The Psalm closes with some assurances for the righteous in verses 39-40 which seem again to sum up the entire Psalm.  The intent of these verses seems designed to encourage and sustain the followers of God.  Consider them now.

  1. The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord (39a). This is true in a physical sense, but it is particularly true in an eternal sense. Eternal salvation can only come from the Lord, and it is for the righteous.  The concept of God providing salvation for the righteous is expressed throughout the book of Psalms.
  2. God provides strength for the righteous in times of trouble (39b). In various places in Psalms, God is frequently referred to as our rock, our refuge, and by various other synonyms expressing the same idea. Consider Psalm 18:1-2 which says, “I will love You, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Another example is Psalm 46:1 which points out, “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.”  Today, God should be our bulwark in times of trouble.
  3. God will help and save the righteous in times of trouble (v. 40). Who will God help and save? It is the righteous.  Again, we see the conditional nature of God’s blessings.

Our lives upon this earth are not always easy.  We often face the “spin-cycles” of life.  We may see evil doers prospering and seemingly having a good life.  This can cause us to become discouraged, annoyed, and perhaps even angry.  God has told us how to handle such situations.  We wait for Him, and we trust Him.  We must realize our future is bright, God will abundantly bless us; and we, in contrast with the evil doers, have a glorious future ahead!