A Psalm a Day: Psalm 28

For September 2022, I’m trying to read and reflect – briefly – on a Psalm each day. I’ll read the Psalm, pray, and then ponder a few questions:

  • What is this Psalm about?
  • What does this Psalm teach about God?
  • How does this Psalm connect to God’s people today?

I’ll close the post with a simple prayer, trying to draw the themes together.

psalm 28

With four weeks of September under our belts (I’ve never understood months), here’s Psalm 28:

To you, Lord, I call;
    you are my Rock,
    do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent,
    I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Hear my cry for mercy
    as I call to you for help,
as I lift up my hands
    toward your Most Holy Place.

Do not drag me away with the wicked,
    with those who do evil,
who speak cordially with their neighbors
    but harbor malice in their hearts.
Repay them for their deeds
    and for their evil work;
repay them for what their hands have done
    and bring back on them what they deserve.

Because they have no regard for the deeds of the Lord
    and what his hands have done,
he will tear them down
    and never build them up again.

Praise be to the Lord,
    for he has heard my cry for mercy.
The Lord is my strength and my shield;
    my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy,
    and with my song I praise him.

The Lord is the strength of his people,
    a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.
Save your people and bless your inheritance;
    be their shepherd and carry them forever.


What is this Psalm about?

This Psalm blends the plea of David to God for help, with praise and declaration of truth, and a plea from David for God’s people. Without knowing the context, we can make much of it in prayer and praise today. One theme that runs through it is that of justice – the Psalmist calls on God to judge fairly, and throws himself upon the mercy of God. He can do so, because of God’s character. Because of this, God is to be praised.

What does this Psalm teach about God?

In a rather reassuring way, we don’t really learn anything new about God here – we have seen the truths of Psalm 28 in the Psalms that precede it, and will likely continue to see these truths throughout the Psalter. In this, we see a hint of God’s steadfastness, of God’s unchanging goodness, and of God’s character. God is reliable – unlike people, and this contrast of the creator and the creature is perhaps another piece of ‘theology proper’ (i.e something we learn about God) that can be discerned from Psalm 28. Verse 8 is rich, too, the first part of it being a standalone truth, the second hinting at several things that the Psalms will open up.

How does this Psalm connect to God’s people today?

God’s people continue to require God’s mercy – and we continue to find ourselves in situations where we must cry out to God. Having a God who never changes makes that more manageable, and can be a source of peace and strength. Verse 9 may have been a plea – perhaps a desperate plea – by David, but it is fulfilled at least in parts as God’s people today continue to read it. God’s inheritance for his people is never ending, God continues to shepherd his people, and God will carry us forever.

A prayer from Psalm 28

Lord, you are my rock, our fortress of salvation. Hear my cry for mercy, as I call to you for help. Thank you that you have sustained your people through the ages – would you intervene in x*, and help my heart to trust in you. Amen.

*x could be a situation or challenge you find yourself in, or something going on in the wider world.

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