The Lord’s Discipline

A number of years ago I was stopped for driving too fast in a speed zone, and in the courtroom I pleaded guilty. The judge was not only friendly but embarrassed for me to be in his court. The fine was ten dollars. If he let me go free, it would have been inconsistent with justice … More


David states that his sin had led to health problems (vv. 1-8) and separated him from God and others causing extreme loneliness (vv. 9-14). He has been deserted by his friends and threatened by his foes. His only hope is to trust in the Lord.

David knew he had sinned and a rebuke was necessary and he asked the Lord not to punish him while he is angry (v. 1). He told the Lord that His arrows had penetrated deeply (v. 2). He had no doubt that the condition in which he found himself was the direct result of God’s judgment on him. We don’t get away with sin. In this passage, we find a brief description of David’s anguish (vv. 3-8). Physically he had lost his strength and his whole body was given to continual aching and is bent over as in old age (v. 6). He was not only suffering physical­ly but with great anguish of soul and mind. The servants in the royal palace must have whispered to themselves at the cries from David’s sick room as he cried out from the very depths of his soul (v. 8).

He continues by saying my health is gone (v.9), my heart beats wildly and I am going blind (v. 10). In addition to the physical distress and pain, his near acquaintances and relatives kept their distance from his suffering and his enemies spent all of their waking hours planning treachery and trying to kill him (vv. 11-12). So overwhelming was his situa­tion that at times David sat deaf and dumb in the presence of God (v.13). I am sure that David never expected anything like this when he first began to play with sin. But then, neither do we. He continues by saying he is deaf to all of their threats and silent as a man that can’t speak (v. 14).


David knew that he was weak spiritually and that his enemies were after him so he cried out to God for help. I am weak and the forces of evil are after me so I need to spend time in prayer.

Psalms 38:1-14 (English Standard Version)

O LORD, rebuke me not in your anger, nor discipline me in your wrath! For your arrows have sunk into me, and your hand has come down on me. There is no soundness in my flesh because of your indignation; there is no health in my bones because of my sin. For my iniquities have gone over my head; like a heavy burden, they are too heavy for me. My wounds stink and fester because of my foolishness, I am utterly bowed down and prostrate; all the day I go about mourning. For my sides are filled with burning, and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart. O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you. My heart throbs; my strength fails me, and the light of my eyes--it also has gone from me. My friends and companions stand aloof from my plague, and my nearest kin stand far off. Those who seek my life lay their snares; those who seek my hurt speak of ruin and meditate treachery all day long. But I am like a deaf man; I do not hear, like a mute man who does not open his mouth. I have become like a man who does not hear, and in whose mouth are no rebukes.

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