Throughout September 2022, I managed to read and reflect – briefly – on a Psalm each day. For December 2022, I’m going to pick up the discipline. 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.
On the fourteenth of December, here’s Psalm 43:
1 Vindicate me, my God,
and plead my cause
against an unfaithful nation.
Rescue me from those who are
deceitful and wicked.
2 You are God my stronghold.
Why have you rejected me?
Why must I go about mourning,
oppressed by the enemy?
3 Send me your light and your faithful care,
let them lead me;
let them bring me to your holy mountain,
to the place where you dwell.
4 Then I will go to the altar of God,
to God, my joy and my delight.
I will praise you with the lyre,
O God, my God.
5 Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.
What is this Psalm about?
We noted on Psalm 42 yesterday that these two Psalms are linked – and were possibly/probably once one Psalm together. A lot of themes overlap – yet Psalm 43 adds an interesting dynamic of being alone against a nation (with God), in verse 1, and an emphasis on musical praise, verse 4b. Verse 5 repeats the refrain that we saw twice in Psalm 42.
What does this Psalm teach us about God?
Psalm 43 teaches us that God can vindicate and rescue his people (V1), and that God is both the stronghold of His people and capable of rejecting them (v2). Ultimately, Psalm 43 is a firm reminder that God is a personal God (‘my’ joy, ‘my’ delight, ‘my God’, v4, 5b) and worthy of worship.
How does this Psalm connect to God’s people today?
In the cultural turmoil we find ourselves in, it can sometimes feel that God’s people are out of kilter with the world – or with the nation/tribe/demographic we find ourselves in. This Psalm is a reminder that being countercultural is nothing new for God’s people – and more importantly that that it is God’s love that matters. Like Psalm 42, there is a reminder to praise regardless of what’s going on – and the permission to be honest, and ask questions about what is going on in our selves.
A prayer drawn from Psalm 43: