Psalms 60

Psalm 60

He Will Tread Down Our Foes

To the choirmaster: according to Shushan Eduth. A Miktam of David; for instruction; when he strove with Aram-naharaim and with Aram-zobah, and when Joab on his return struck down twelve thousand of Edom in the Valley of Salt.

60   O God, you have rejected us, broken our defenses;
    you have been angry; oh, restore us.
  You have made the land to quake; you have torn it open;
    repair its breaches, for it totters.
  You have made your people see hard things;
    you have given us wine to drink that made us stagger.
  You have set up a banner for those who fear you,
    that they may flee to it from the bow. Selah
  That your beloved ones may be delivered,
    give salvation by your right hand and answer us!
  God has spoken in his holiness:
    “With exultation I will divide up Shechem
    and portion out the Vale of Succoth.
  Gilead is mine; Manasseh is mine;
    Ephraim is my helmet;
    Judah is my scepter.
  Moab is my washbasin;
    upon Edom I cast my shoe;
    over Philistia I shout in triumph.”
  Who will bring me to the fortified city?
    Who will lead me to Edom?
  Have you not rejected us, O God?
    You do not go forth, O God, with our armies.
  Oh, grant us help against the foe,
    for vain is the salvation of man!
  With God we shall do valiantly;
    it is he who will tread down our foes.


Psalm 60 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

Defeat is never easy. Never. But since Jesus took on sin and death and triumphed over it through His resurrection, we have the power to face it. For the believer rooted in faith, defeat is not the end. Randy Alcorn gives a great perspective on this thought…

“When Nanci and I saw Michelangelo’s statue of David in Florence, it took our breath away. To produce this masterpiece, Michelangelo chose a stone that other artists had rejected. The master worked daily to chip away everything that wasn’t David, transforming that huge marble block into something surpassingly beautiful. While Michelangelo may not have called upon the stone to cooperate with him, God has called us to yield ourselves by submitting to his chisel.

The Master Artist chose us—the flawed and unusable— to be crafted into the image of Christ to fulfill our destiny in displaying Jesus to the watching universe. We may at times ask God to withhold the chisel because it hurts, but it’s his means of transforming us into what he wants us to be and ultimately what we will want ourselves to be.”

Randy Alcorn “If God Is Good: Why Do We Hurt?”

Although David suffered a brutal defeat, it was no doubt part of God’s process to chisel away the rough edges of his life. That doesn’t mean that the feelings of neglect and abandonment weren’t real. There are times in all our lives where those moments are bitter and depressing. Although some of David’s presumptions are false (God has rejected us), he is working through his issues in the healthiest way possible. He is crying out to God with raw and honest emotions and moving forward in prayer. This is an example that we must follow as believers today.

Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,  4  and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,  5  and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Romans 5:3-5 ESV

In his book “If God is Good: Why Do We Hurt?” Randy Alcorn offers several practical points for working through feelings of defeat.

  1. Look to God’s promises for comfort. Scripture sustains us through suffering. Consider the comfort in passages such as this one: “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Corinthians 4:17). I know of a woman who has experienced suffering, who each night reads her Bible, then hugs it as she falls asleep. She asked a pastor self-consciously, “Is that weird?” It may be unusual, but it isn’t weird. By clinging to God’s promises, she clings to God. That can only please him.
  2. Anticipate God’s rewards. Jesus told suffering believers to “rejoice … and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven” (Luke 6:23). Greater suffering for Christ will bring us greater eternal rewards.
  3. Lighten the load through prayer. Suffering often induces stress and anxiety. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6–7).
  4. Share your life with others who suffer. Reach out to those who suffer. Give your time and energy and money to work with the poor, the unemployed, the lonely, and those who battle illness, disabilities, or addictions. While the main reason to help them is love for Christ and for them, you will find immense personal benefits in serving them. You’ll see how God can use both their suffering and yours.

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