A Christian Perspective on Psalm 4

There are a few Psalms (6, 67 & 76) written specifically for music to be played while singing the words. Many Christians feel awkward singing to God with instruments, because there is no example of a Christian congregation in the New Testament using any kind of instrumental music in praise to God. But there obviously was a time when God accepted it and was pleased with the congregation of Israel using instruments, there was also a time when God accepted the sacrifice of animal blood. So just because instrumental music was accepted with Jewish praise, doesn’t mean it’s accepted in Christian praise. Christian praise is exclusively centered and directed from the human heart directly and uniquely to the Spirit of Christ, nothing added and nothing taken away. Perhaps the reason instruments were used with this song in particular is because David was deeply distressed and found the sound of strings emphasized the feeling behind the words of truth that relieved his stress so well. God does use many different tools to treat human conditions and music therapy may indeed be as effective as aromatherapy for some ailments. But the ailment of the soul, which is sin, is not treated with anything better than the words and love of Christ. The gospel and presence of Christ’s Spirit is very effective in dealing with a Christian’s stress or distress and there is nothing that can enhance it. If we try to add anything, we venture into the fields of our will instead of God’s will and therein lay sin.

In verse 1, we find David stirring himself up to take hold of God’s strength. This is something that Israel really lacked during Isaiah’s day, See Isaiah 64:7, when he said “NO ONE” stirs himself up to take hold of You. Do we prepare ourselves for worshiping God? Do we stir ourselves up for prayer? If not, let me encourage you to learn more about Biblical meditation, 1st Timothy 4:15.

In verses 2-3, Despite the discouragement of his enemies, David may be disrespected publicly, but he finds that God answers his prayers. Do we focus on God’s answers when we are tempted and tried by the trials of life? There are many things that can stop us from seeing God’s answers to prayer, they are: 1-Not living in Christ Jesus (Jn. 15:7), 2-Unbelief (Mt. 17:20-21), 3-Bad marriages (1Pt. 3:7), 4-Unconfessed sin (Jas. 5:16), 5-Trusting in the length or style of prayer itself (Mt. 6:7) So we must do whatever it takes, to be heard, if not, the Bible gives us no certainty in an answer!
In verses 4-8, David used Biblical meditation, not the Eastern practice of meditation. In Biblical meditation, we fill our heart and mind with God’s word, the TRUTH. In eastern meditation, the idea is to empty the heart and mind, leaving us open potentially for LIES. David proclaims that the Lord’s goodness puts gladness in David’s heart. Here David sounds alot like Aaron’s High Priestly promise in Numbers 6:24-26 coming true and fulfilled in his life experience. Is this your experience in Christ?

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