Psalms 18

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the LORD. He sang to the LORD the words of this song when the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said:

1 [a]I love you, LORD, my strength.
2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield[b] and the horn[c] of my salvation, my stronghold.
3 I called to the LORD, who is worthy of praise, and I have been saved from my enemies.
4 The cords of death entangled me; the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
5 The cords of the grave coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me.
6 In my distress I called to the LORD; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears.
7 The earth trembled and quaked, and the foundations of the mountains shook; they trembled because he was angry.
8 Smoke rose from his nostrils; consuming fire came from his mouth, burning coals blazed out of it.
9 He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He mounted the cherubim and flew; he soared on the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him— the dark rain clouds of the sky.
12 Out of the brightness of his presence clouds advanced, with hailstones and bolts of lightning.
13 The LORD thundered from heaven; the voice of the Most High resounded.[d]
14 He shot his arrows and scattered the enemy, with great bolts of lightning he routed them.
15 The valleys of the sea were exposed and the foundations of the earth laid bare at your rebuke, LORD, at the blast of breath from your nostrils.
16 He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters.
17 He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me.
18 They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the LORD was my support.
19 He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.
20 The LORD has dealt with me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands he has rewarded me.
21 For I have kept the ways of the LORD; I am not guilty of turning from my God.
22 All his laws are before me; I have not turned away from his decrees.
23 I have been blameless before him and have kept myself from sin.
24 The LORD has rewarded me according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight.
25 To the faithful you show yourself faithful, to the blameless you show yourself blameless,
26 to the pure you show yourself pure, but to the devious you show yourself shrewd.
27 You save the humble but bring low those whose eyes are haughty.
28 You, LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.
29 With your help I can advance against a troop[e] ; with my God I can scale a wall.
30 As for God, his way is perfect: The LORD’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him.
31 For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our God?
32 It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.
33 He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights.
34 He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
35 You make your saving help my shield, and your right hand sustains me; your help has made me great.
36 You provide a broad path for my feet, so that my ankles do not give way.
37 I pursued my enemies and overtook them; I did not turn back till they were destroyed.
38 I crushed them so that they could not rise; they fell beneath my feet.
39 You armed me with strength for battle; you humbled my adversaries before me.
40 You made my enemies turn their backs in flight, and I destroyed my foes.
41 They cried for help, but there was no one to save them— to the LORD, but he did not answer.
42 I beat them as fine as windblown dust; I trampled them[f] like mud in the streets.
43 You have delivered me from the attacks of the people; you have made me the head of nations. People I did not know now serve me,
44 foreigners cower before me; as soon as they hear of me, they obey me.
45 They all lose heart; they come trembling from their strongholds.
46 The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock! Exalted be God my Savior!
47 He is the God who avenges me, who subdues nations under me,
48 who saves me from my enemies. You exalted me above my foes; from a violent man you rescued me.
49 Therefore I will praise you, LORD, among the nations; I will sing the praises of your name.
50 He gives his king great victories; he shows unfailing love to his anointed, to David and to his descendants forever.

Images for Psalms 18

Psalms 18 Commentary

Chapter 18

David rejoices in the deliverances God wrought for him. (1-19) He takes the comfort of his integrity, which God had cleared up. (20-28) He gives to God the glory of all his mighty deeds. (29-50)

Verses 1-19 The first words, "I will love thee, O Lord, my strength," are the scope and contents of the psalm. Those that truly love God, may triumph in him as their Rock and Refuge, and may with confidence call upon him. It is good for us to observe all the circumstances of a mercy which magnify the power of God and his goodness to us in it. David was a praying man, and God was found a prayer-hearing God. If we pray as he did, we shall speed as he did. God's manifestation of his presence is very fully described, ver. ( 7-15 ) . Little appeared of man, but much of God, in these deliverances. It is not possible to apply to the history of the son of Jesse those awful, majestic, and stupendous words which are used through this description of the Divine manifestation. Every part of so solemn a scene of terrors tells us, a greater than David is here. God will not only deliver his people out of their troubles in due time, but he will bear them up under their troubles in the mean time. Can we meditate on ver. 18, without directing one thought to Gethsemane and Calvary? Can we forget that it was in the hour of Christ's deepest calamity, when Judas betrayed, when his friends forsook, when the multitude derided him, and the smiles of his Father's love were withheld, that the powers of darkness prevented him? The sorrows of death surrounded him, in his distress he prayed, ( Hebrews 5:7 ) . God made the earth to shake and tremble, and the rocks to cleave, and brought him out, in his resurrection, because he delighted in him and in his undertaking.

Verses 20-28 Those that forsake the ways of the Lord, depart from their God. But though conscious to ourselves of many a false step, let there not be a wicked departure from our God. David kept his eye upon the rule of God's commands. Constant care to keep from that sin, whatever it be, which most easily besets us, proves that we are upright before God. Those who show mercy to others, even they need mercy. Those who are faithful to God, shall find him all that to them which he has promised to be. The words of the Lord are pure words, very sure to be depended on, and very sweet to be delighted in. Those who resist God, and walk contrary to him, shall find that he will walk contrary to them, ( Leviticus 26:21-24 ) . The gracious recompence of which David spoke, may generally be expected by those who act from right motives. Hence he speaks comfort to the humble, and terror to the proud; "Thou wilt bring down high looks." And he speaks encouragement to himself; "Thou wilt light my candle:" thou wilt revive and comfort my sorrowful spirit; thou wilt guide my way, that I may avoid the snares laid for me. Thou wilt light my candle to work by, and give me an opportunity of serving thee. Let those that walk in darkness, and labour under discouragements, take courage; God himself will be a Light to them.

Verses 29-50 When we praise for one mercy, we must observe the many more, with which we have been compassed all our days. Many things had contributed to David's advancement, and he owns the hand of God in them all, to teach us to do likewise. In verse Verse 32 , and the following verses, are the gifts of God to the spiritual warrior, whereby he is prepared for the contest, after the example of his victorious Leader. Learn that we must seek release being made through Christ, shall be rejected. In David the type, we behold out of trouble through Christ. The prayer put up, without reconciliation Jesus our Redeemer, conflicting with enemies, compassed with sorrows and with floods of ungodly men, enduring not only the pains of death, but the wrath of God for us; yet calling upon the Father with strong cries and tears; rescued from the grave; proceeding to reconcile, or to put under his feet all other enemies, till death, the last enemy, shall be destroyed. We should love the Lord, our Strength, and our Salvation; we should call on him in every trouble, and praise him for every deliverance; we should aim to walk with him in all righteousness and true holiness, keeping from sin. If we belong to him, he conquers and reigns for us, and we shall conquer and reign through him, and partake of the mercy of our anointed King, which is promised to all his seed for evermore. Amen.

Cross References 110

  • 1. S Exodus 15:2; S Deuteronomy 33:29; S 1 Samuel 2:10; Psalms 22:19; Psalms 28:7; Psalms 59:9; Psalms 81:1; Isaiah 12:2; Isaiah 49:5; Jeremiah 16:19
  • 2. S Exodus 33:22; Psalms 19:14
  • 3. Psalms 28:8; Psalms 31:2,3; Isaiah 17:10; Jeremiah 16:19
  • 4. Psalms 40:17
  • 5. Psalms 2:12; Psalms 9:9; Psalms 94:22
  • 6. S Genesis 15:1; Psalms 28:7; Psalms 84:9; Psalms 119:114; Psalms 144:2; Psalms 59:11
  • 7. S 1 Samuel 2:1; S Luke 1:69; Psalms 75:10
  • 8. S 1 Chronicles 16:25; Psalms 48:1
  • 9. S Psalms 9:13
  • 10. Psalms 116:3
  • 11. Psalms 93:4; Psalms 124:4; Isaiah 5:30; Isaiah 17:12; Jeremiah 6:23; Jeremiah 51:42,55; Ezekiel 43:2
  • 12. Proverbs 13:14; Psalms 116:3
  • 13. S Deuteronomy 4:30
  • 14. Psalms 30:2; Psalms 99:6; Psalms 102:2; Psalms 120:1
  • 15. Psalms 66:19; Psalms 116:1; Psalms 34:15
  • 16. S Job 16:18
  • 17. Psalms 97:4; Isaiah 5:25; Isaiah 64:3
  • 18. S Judges 5:4
  • 19. S Judges 5:5
  • 20. S Job 9:5; Jeremiah 10:10; Psalms 68:7-8
  • 21. S Job 41:20
  • 22. S Exodus 15:7; S Exodus 19:18; S Job 41:21; Psalms 50:3; Psalms 97:3; Daniel 7:10
  • 23. Proverbs 25:22; Romans 12:20
  • 24. S Genesis 11:5; S Psalms 57:3; Psalms 144:5
  • 25. S Exodus 20:21; S Deuteronomy 33:26; S Psalms 104:3
  • 26. S Genesis 3:24; Ezekiel 10:18; Psalms 80:1
  • 27. S Deuteronomy 33:26
  • 28. Psalms 104:3
  • 29. S Exodus 19:9; S Deuteronomy 4:11; Psalms 97:2
  • 30. S Job 22:14; Isaiah 4:5; Jeremiah 43:10
  • 31. Psalms 104:2
  • 32. S Joshua 10:11
  • 33. S Job 36:30; Psalms 97:3
  • 34. S Exodus 9:23; S 1 Samuel 2:10; Psalms 29:3; Psalms 104:7
  • 35. S Deuteronomy 32:23
  • 36. S Job 36:30; Revelation 4:5
  • 37. S Judges 4:15; Psalms 144:6
  • 38. S Psalms 11:3
  • 39. Psalms 76:6; Psalms 104:7; Psalms 106:9; Isaiah 50:2
  • 40. S Exodus 15:8
  • 41. Exodus 15:5; Psalms 69:2; Proverbs 18:4; Proverbs 20:5; Psalms 144:7
  • 42. ver 48; Psalms 38:19; Psalms 59:1; Psalms 143:9
  • 43. S Judges 18:26; Psalms 35:10
  • 44. Proverbs 1:27; Proverbs 16:4; Jeremiah 17:17; Jeremiah 40:2; Obadiah 1:13
  • 45. Psalms 20:2; Isaiah 3:1; Psalms 59:16
  • 46. Psalms 31:8
  • 47. S Numbers 14:8; Psalms 118:5
  • 48. S 1 Samuel 26:23
  • 49. Job 22:30; Psalms 24:4
  • 50. S Ruth 2:12; S 2 Chronicles 15:7; 1 Corinthians 3:8
  • 51. 2 Chronicles 34:33; Psalms 37:34; Psalms 119:2; Proverbs 8:32; Proverbs 23:26
  • 52. Psalms 119:102
  • 53. Psalms 119:30
  • 54. S Genesis 6:9
  • 55. S 1 Samuel 26:23
  • 56. Psalms 31:23; Psalms 37:28; Psalms 50:5; Proverbs 2:8; 1 Kings 8:32; Psalms 62:12; Matthew 5:7
  • 57. Psalms 25:10; Psalms 40:11; Psalms 89:24; Psalms 146:6
  • 58. Proverbs 15:26; Matthew 5:8; Philippians 1:10; 1 Timothy 5:22; Titus 1:15; 1 John 3:3
  • 59. Proverbs 3:34; Matthew 10:16; Luke 16:8
  • 60. S 2 Chronicles 33:23; S Matthew 23:12
  • 61. S Job 41:34; S Psalms 10:5; Proverbs 3:33-34; Proverbs 6:17
  • 62. 1 Kings 11:36; Psalms 132:17
  • 63. Job 18:6; Job 29:3; Psalms 97:11; Psalms 112:4; John 1:5; S Acts 26:18; 2 Corinthians 4:6; 2 Peter 1:19
  • 64. ver 32,39; Isaiah 45:5; Hebrews 11:34
  • 65. S Deuteronomy 32:4; Revelation 15:3
  • 66. S Psalms 12:6; Proverbs 30:5
  • 67. Psalms 3:3
  • 68. Psalms 2:12; Psalms 17:7
  • 69. S Deuteronomy 4:35; Deuteronomy 32:39; Psalms 35:10; Psalms 86:8; Psalms 89:6; Isaiah 44:6,8; Isaiah 45:5,6,14,18,21; Isaiah 46:9
  • 70. S Genesis 49:24; Deuteronomy 32:31; 1 Samuel 2:2
  • 71. S ver 29; 1 Peter 5:10; Isaiah 45:5
  • 72. S Psalms 15:2; Psalms 19:13; Hebrews 10:14; James 3:2
  • 73. Psalms 42:1; Proverbs 5:19; Isaiah 35:6; Habakkuk 3:19
  • 74. S Deuteronomy 32:13
  • 75. Psalms 144:1
  • 76. Psalms 3:5; Psalms 37:5,17; Psalms 41:3; Psalms 51:12; Psalms 54:4; Psalms 55:22; Psalms 119:116; Isa 41:4,10,13; Isaiah 43:2; Isaiah 46:4
  • 77. Psalms 31:8
  • 78. S Job 18:7; Psalms 66:9
  • 79. S Leviticus 26:7; Psalms 37:20; Psalms 44:5
  • 80. Psalms 68:21; Psalms 110:6
  • 81. Psalms 36:12; Psalms 140:10; Isaiah 26:14
  • 82. Psalms 47:3
  • 83. ver 32; Isaiah 45:5,24
  • 84. ver 47; Psalms 47:3; Psalms 144:2
  • 85. S Joshua 7:12; Psalms 21:12
  • 86. ver 37; Psalms 94:23
  • 87. S 2 Kings 14:26; Psalms 50:22
  • 88. S 1 Samuel 8:18; S 1 Samuel 14:37; Jeremiah 11:11; Job 27:9; Proverbs 1:28
  • 89. S Deuteronomy 9:21; S Isaiah 2:22
  • 90. 2 Samuel 8:1-14
  • 91. Isaiah 52:15; Isaiah 55:5
  • 92. Psalms 54:3; Psalms 144:7,11; Isaiah 25:5; Psalms 66:3
  • 93. S 1 Samuel 17:32; 2 Corinthians 4:1; Hebrews 12:3
  • 94. Isaiah 66:2; Hosea 3:5; Hosea 11:10
  • 95. Psalms 9:9; Micah 7:17
  • 96. S Joshua 3:10; S 1 Samuel 14:39; 2 Corinthians 13:4
  • 97. ver 31; Exodus 33:22
  • 98. Psalms 21:13; Psalms 35:27; Psalms 40:16; Psalms 108:5
  • 99. S 1 Chronicles 16:35; S Luke 1:47; Psalms 51:14
  • 100. S Genesis 4:24
  • 101. S ver 39; S Judges 4:23; Psalms 47:3
  • 102. Psalms 7:10; Psalms 37:40; Daniel 3:17; Psalms 59:1
  • 103. S ver 17
  • 104. Psalms 140:1
  • 105. S Psalms 9:11
  • 106. Psalms 7:17; Psalms 9:2; Psalms 101:1; Psalms 108:1; Psalms 146:2
  • 107. Romans 15:9*
  • 108. S 2 Samuel 23:1
  • 109. Psalms 144:10
  • 110. Psalms 89:4

Footnotes 6

  • [a]. In Hebrew texts 18:1-50 is numbered 18:2-51.
  • [b]. Or "sovereign"
  • [c]. "Horn" here symbolizes strength.
  • [d]. Some Hebrew manuscripts and Septuagint (see also 2 Samuel 22:14); most Hebrew manuscripts "resounded," / "amid hailstones and bolts of lightning"
  • [e]. Or "can run through a barricade"
  • [f]. Many Hebrew manuscripts, Septuagint, Syriac and Targum (see also 2 Samuel 22:43); Masoretic Text "I poured them out"

Chapter Summary

Psalms 18 Commentaries