The Treasury of David

The Treasury of David is one of several C.H. Spurgeon books that are in the public domain. If you propose to study the Psalms, I suggest you download this as a companion for your other references.

Psalm 54

Exposition
Explanatory Notes and Quaint Sayings
Hints to the Village Preacher
Other Works


TITLE.To the Chief Musician on Neginoth. The music was to be that of stringed instruments. Variety is to be studied in our tunes, and in all other matters relating to sacred songs. Monotony is often the death of congregational praise. Providence is varied, and so should our recording songs. Maschil. We are to learn and to teach by what we sing. Edification must not be divorced from psalmody. A Psalm of David. David’s productions were as plentiful as they are profitable. His varied life was for our benefit, for from it we derive these hymns, which at this hour are as fresh and as precious as when he wrote them. When the Ziphims came and said to Saul, Doth not David hide with us? To curry favor with Saul they were guilty of gross inhospitality. What cared they what innocent blood was shed so that they earned the graceless monarch’s smile! David came quietly among them, hoping for a little rest in his many flights, but they deserted him in his solitary abode and betrayed him. He turns to God in prayer, and so strong was his faith that he soon sang himself into delightful serenity.

DIVISION. From Ps 54:1-3, where the Selah makes a pause for us, the psalmist pleads with God, and then in the rest of the song, laying aside all doubt, he chants a hymn of joyful triumph. The vigor of faith is the death of anxiety, and the birth of security.

Verse 3. For strangers are risen up against me. Those who had no cause for ill will had gone against him; persons to whom he could have given no offense, for they were strangers to him. They were aliens to his God also, and should these be allowed to worry and destroy him. A child may well complain to his father when strangers come in to molest him. What right have they to interfere? Let them leave off meddling and mind their own concerns. And oppressors seek after my soul. Saul, that persecuting tyrant, had stamped his own image on many more. Kings generally coin their own likeness. He led the way, and others followed seeking David’s soul, his blood, his life, his very existence. Cruel and intense were they in their malice, they would utterly crush the good man; no half measure would content them. They have not set God before them. They had no more regard for right and justice than if they knew no God, or cared for none. Had they regarded God they would not have betrayed the innocent to be hunted down like a poor harmless stag. David felt that atheism lay at the bottom of the enmity which pursued him. Good men are hated for God’s sake, and this is a good plea for them to urge in prayer. Selah. As if he said, “Enough of this, let us pause.” He is out of breath with indignation. A sense of wrong bids him suspend the music awhile. It may also be observed, that more pauses would, as a rule, improve our devotions: we are usually too much in a hurry: a little more holy meditation would make our words more suitable and our emotions more fervent.

Singing psalms 54

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