Verse 7. Here is David's declaration and confession of faith, coupled with a testimony from his experience. The Lord is my strength. The Lord employs his power on our behalf, and moreover, infuses strength into us in our weakness. The psalmist, by an act of appropriating faith, takes the omnipotence of Jehovah to be his own. Dependence upon the invisible God gives great independence of spirit, inspiring us with confidence more than human. And my shield. Thus David found both sword and shield in his God. The Lord preserves his people from unnumbered ills; and the Christian warrior, sheltered behind his God, is far more safe than the hero when covered with his shield of brass or triple steel. My heart trusted in him, and I am helped. Heart work is sure work; heart trust is never disappointed. Faith must come before help, but help will never be long behindhand. Every day the believer may say, "I am helped," for the divine assistance is vouchsafed us every moment, or we should go back unto perdition; when more manifest help is needed, we have but to put faith into exercise, and it will be given us. Therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him. The heart is mentioned twice to show the truth of his faith and his joy. Observe the adverb "greatly," we need not be afraid of being too full of rejoicing at the remembrance of grace received. We serve a great God, let us greatly rejoice in him. A song is the soul's fittest method of giving vent to its happiness, it were well if we were more like the singing lark, and less like the croaking raven. When the heart is glowing, the lips should not be silent. When God blesses us, we should bless him with all our heart.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 7. The Lord is my strength. Oh, sweet consolation! If a man have a burden upon him, yet if he have strength added to him, if the burden be doubled, yet if his strength be trebled, the burden will not be heavier, but lighter than it was before to his natural strength; so if our afflictions be heavy, and we cry out, Oh, we cannot bear them! yet if we cannot bear them with our own strength, why may we not bear them with the strength of Jesus Christ? Do we think that Christ could not bear them? or if we dare not think but that Christ could bear them, why may not we come to bear them? Some may question, can we have the strength of Christ? Yes; that very strength is made over to us by faith, for so the Scripture saith frequently, The Lord is our strength; God is our strength; The Lord Jehovah is our strength; Christ is our strength Psalms 28:7 43:2 Psalms 118:14 Isaiah 12:2 Hab 3:19 Colossians 1:11 ; and, therefore, is Christ's strength ours, made over unto us, that we may be able to bear whatsoever lies upon us. Isaac Ambrose.
Verse 7. The Lord is my strength inwardly, and my shield outwardly. Faith finds both these in Jehovah, and the one not without the other, for what is a shield without strength, or strength without a shield? My heart trusted in him, and I am helped: the idea of the former sentence is here carried out, that outward help was granted to inward confidence. W. Wilson, D.D.
Verse 7. My heart trusted in him, and I am helped. Faith substantiates things not yet seen; it altereth the tense, saith one, and putteth the future into the present tense as here. John Trapp.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 7. The heart's possessions, confidence, experience, joy, and music.
Verse 7. Adoring God for his mercies.
- What God is to the believer.
- What should be the disposition of our hearts towards him. C. Simeon.