Our Hope at All Times

DAVID GOFF | APRIL 15, 2020

PSALM 43

 

 Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me.

Psalm 43:3

 

Have you ever felt like the whole world was conspiring against you? Or, perhaps you’ve experienced the deep pain of being unfairly targeted by a particular person? When you find yourself in great trials like this, where do you look for hope? Where we look for hope is critical. If we put our hope in the wrong thing, we risk finding answers that only provide temporary relief and ultimately don’t satisfy.

 

In Psalm 43, we find David going through a similar trial. But, by reading his prayer, we see he put his hope in God. From this prayer, let’s consider three truths about God’s hope.

 

God’s hope delivers us

“Vindicate me, O God, And plead my cause against an ungodly nation; Oh, deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man!” (1)

 

Here in Psalm 43, we find David still on the run from those who sought to locate and kill him.  David’s burden is heavy. We now see him despairing over the unkindness of the people he comes across during his exile from Jerusalem. At his time of greatest need, it felt as he was alone, and everyone was against him.

 

Yet, David reveals an even more profound pain as he pleads to God, “…deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man!” (1) This person, likely King Saul, was one whom he previously had a relationship. He was the father of his dearest friend, Jonathan. Now he wants David dead. Severely damaged relationships like this can be the source of some of the deepest hurts we experience in our lives.

 

When we experience the hurt from damaged relationships, we may turn to bitterness, anger, or other sinful behaviors to handle it. But, what do we see David do? He asks God to vindicate and deliver him. Yet, these are not just prayers as a last resort - these are prayers of one with confident hope. We see David’s hope as he declares, “…You are the God of my strength.” (2) David knew that in God’s timing, he would be delivered from Saul. Although David mourns over his troubles, he had hope in God’s deliverance.

 

How reassuring it must have been for David to know that God would deliver him. But what move should David make next?

  

God’s hope guides us

“Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill And to Your tabernacle.” (3)

 

As David petitions God, “Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! (3) he is asking God for guidance. David needs wisdom for his next move. I imagine that David wondered, “Where should I travel to next?” or perhaps, “When will it be safe to return home?”

 

David desired to be brought back to that holy hill - to the safety of the Lord’s Tabernacle once again. In Psalm 91, it says that when we rest in the shadow of the Almighty, we have shelter in the Most High. As David would hide in the mountains of Ziph, I imagine this would be the sentiment of his heart as he felt safe, protected, and guided by the light and truth of God.

 

As we see the words light and truth, we are reminded of the hope that the Gospel brings to us in Christ. Jesus takes on the comparison of light, as he explains, ‘“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”’ In Christs’ light and Word, we cast out darkness - our sin, false hope, and Satan’s ploys. It is through Christ's light and truth we are guided into all truth for all seasons of our life. Yes, God’s hope guides us.

 

You might be thinking, with the Lord as his guide - exactly where will David’s final destination be?

 

God’s hope provides us eternal joy

“Then I will go to the altar of God, To God my exceeding joy;
And on the harp I will praise You, O God, my God.” (4)

 

David now sets his mind on his final destination - which is to draw close to God his exceeding joy. The final resting place of David’s hope is in the presence of his Lord forever!

 

We see that the reality of his future hope gives peace to David even in his current circumstance. Although he may appear cast down and weary on the outside - inwardly, his soul is being renewed by God.

 

In the same way, when we are overwhelmed with the great trials the world throws at us - we need only look at our future inheritance to have God's peace today. And like David, we can look forward to the coming day when we will give praise to God, our exceeding joy.

 

As we go through great trials in our life, there is a temptation to look for hope in the wrong places. When we put our trust in the wrong thing, it results in temporary solutions and in answers that don't ultimately satisfy. As David ends this Psalm, he concludes, “…Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.” (5) And we, like David, can also count on God to be our hope at all times.

 

 

David Goff is the Associate Pastor of First Baptist Church, Washington MI