A Morning Prayer
Psalm 5:1-12
Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.…

Every new day the priests began anew the service of God in the temple. The altar was set in order, the lamb was made ready, and as soon as the sign of day was given the morning sacrifice was offered (Leviticus 6:5; Numbers 28:4). In this there was a lesson for all times. Every new day calls for a fresh consecration of ourselves to God. "When first thine eyes unveil, give thy soul leave to do the like" (Vaughan). In this morning prayer we find

I. FAITH IN GOD'S FATHERLY CHARACTER. The cry, "Give ear," is that of a child to its father. The priests stood for others. They offered sacrifices not only for themselves, but for the people. But for us there is but one Priest and one Sacrifice. Through Christ we have access to God as our Father, and can cry to him for help in every time of need (Ephesians 2:16; Hebrews 4:16).

II. CONFIDENCE IN GOD'S HOLY RULE. (Vers. 3-7.) The psalmist speaks of what he knows. God is just and holy. The more we think, the more will our confidence grow. We rise from the faith that God is our Father, to the grand belief that he is "King," and that he will defend the right. But let us keep in mind what sin is. Some in these days make light of sin. It is an inherited weakness, a necessary evil for which circumstances are to be blamed more than the sinner. These and such-like excuses are made, and, if this is not enough, it is said, "Somehow things will come right. If not here, yet in the future world all will be well. To such the "wrath" of God is but a figure of speech, and "hell" the invention of our slavish fears. Against all such dangerous teaching, let us place the wholesome doctrine of the psalmist and of our Lord.

III. EXPECTATION OF GOD'S GRACIOUS INTERPOSITION. (Vers. 8-10.) Help is needed, and earnestly implored. The cry is not for mere personal ease or comfort, but for such deliverance as shall be for God's glory. The soul is in sympathy with God, and can not only pray, but "look up" with the patience of hope.

1. Guidance. (Ver. 9.) We confess our weakness; but we east ourselves on God for help. He is our Shepherd. We trust his love, and surrender ourselves to his leading. It is for him to go before; it is for us as his sheep to hear his voice and follow him.

2. Defence. (Ver. 11.) When Luther was asked at Augsburg where he should find shelter if his patron, the Elector of Saxony, deserted him, his answer was, "Under the shield of Heaven" This shield is for all. Other defences may fail; but here we are safe from all the assaults of the enemy.

3. Blessedness. (Ver. 12.) God is pledged to his people by his character as well as by his covenant. Trust in him awakens joy - pure, ardent, comforting, not like the joy of the fool (Ecclesiastes 7:6), but real and abiding, as God's Name. Trust also calls forth praise. What Jeremiah said in the pit, God's people say in the sunshine, O Lord, there is none like unto thee. They are as Naphtali, "satisfied with favour, and full with the blessing of the Lord" (Deuteronomy 33:23). Therefore they sing, "There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. The eternal God is thy Refuge" (Deuteronomy 33:26, 27). - W.F.

Parallel Verses
KJV: {To the chief Musician upon Nehiloth, A Psalm of David.} Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.

WEB: Give ear to my words, Yahweh. Consider my meditation.

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