Today’s reading has several interesting concepts for the Bible student. Old Testament references to the resurrection and what we could call the warrior’s hymn.
Although there are those who would argue that there wasn’t much in the Old Testament about the afterlife, the truth is that there really is quite a bit. There isn’t a ton of information on the direct afterlife in Sheol, but we know that it exists. And although there isn’t a lot of information about the resurrection, nevertheless there are references to it as in Psalm 16:8-10 and 17:15. Some would argue that 16:8-10 is really a reference to how the LORD will save him from death itself, the inspired New Testament book of Acts would authoritatively argue differently. Acts 2:25-28 quotes this as a prophecy about the resurrection of God’s Holy One, His Messiah. And Psalm 17:15 lifts up his hope — in contrast to the rich unrighteous — of seeing the LORD’s face. No Jew hoped to see the face of God in this life; it meant instant death, because mortal man cannot bear the glory of God (e.g., Exo. 33:20). This was the glorious hope of seeing the LORD after this life is over, presumably in the resurrection. What a great strength this hope is in times of trouble, persecution, oppression, and when we’re tempted to be envious of the wicked — in the end we receive the ultimate gift of being in the very presence of God Himself! No wonder then that the three great pillars of Christianity are faith, HOPE, and love.
Chapter 18 moves us to a different spot, however. The warrior of the LORD. It is a psalm of David, according to the epigraph, and it certainly fits the bill in every way. It’s application to us who are still engaged in the war that still rages in the earth, the spiritual war (Eph. 6:10ff), is great; and I would encourage your reading of this psalm in this light.
See you tomorrow, Lord willing.