Confidence in Life’s Only Hope

American pastor and author James H. Brookes told of visiting a friend’s house and hearing the music of a bird singing. It was not the ordinary sound of chirping; instead it resembled the strains of a lovely melody. At first Brookes didn’t know where it was coming from; but when h … More


David begins the Psalm with a pledge to hold his tongue (v. 1). He had good intentions of keeping his mouth shut so as not to speak against God. Even though men like Shimei, Absalom and Joab seemed to go scot-free David was experiencing great suffering because of his sin. With this in mind, he pledged to bridle his tongue and not add to his other sins with his tongue. It was an important pledge and one in which we need to consider. David decided not even to speak a word of good for fear he would speak a word of evil (v. 2). This only aggravated his suffering. It is one thing to bridle the tongue against evil-speaking but when we try total silence, we go beyond what God intended.

As he thought about the situation which surrounded him and the wicked who pursued him his pledge to silence weakened (v. 3). We now find him pleading with God for some answers to the problems of life’s frailty and life’s futility (vv. 4-5). Human life is like a breath that soon disappears (v. 6). He asks, “What am I waiting for?” I depend on you, Lord (v. 7). Then he requests that the Lord save him from his sins and not let people sneer at him (v. 8) while he is silent (v. 9). He confesses his sin of discouragement. He knew his sufferings were because of his sin and proceeds to list the results:

1. He had lost his blessedness  (v. 10). This was a direct result of his sin. His fellowship with God was broken and his life was filled with fear.

2. He had lost His beauty  (v.11a). Sin and sick­ness had left indelible marks on his face.

3. He had lost His bearings (v. 11b). David felt he was adrift on life’s sea without a compass.

David begs the Lord to listen to his prayer (v. 12) and spare him from future remorse (v. 13).


I have seen these same results in the lives of people who have fallen into sin. It is only staying close to the Lord that will prevent this from happening to me.

Psalms 39:1-13 (English Standard Version)

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