When I first looked at this Psalm, I thought, “Save?” What does David mean? Save him from all the evil ones? Save Israel? Save the faithful? Then I kept reading. Later, the Psalm says that God will give refuge to the poor (verse 5), then David puts himself with them (verse 7). My thought is that David prayed for safety for himself, the poor, and all the righteous in Israel. David sounds depressed, but he handled it well – he prayed.
The way he described the environment reminds me of the world today.
1 Save, O LORD, for the godly one is gone;
for the faithful have vanished from among the children of man.
2 Everyone utters lies to his neighbor;
with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.
8 On every side the wicked prowl,
as vileness is exalted among the children of man.
David’s black mood fits mine this morning. Godliness seems invisible at my workplace. Who is faithful? Don’t you know that fundamentalism stops a thinking mind? People utter lies for their own gain; people flatter to get themselves ahead.
When we feel this way, God wants us to look to Him. While it may seem that darkness encloses us on every side, He protects those who seek Him. In the midst of the onslaught of evil we can rely upon God’s pure, holy words.
6 The words of the LORD are pure words,
like silver refined in a furnace on the ground,
purified seven times.
And what does God say?
5“Because the poor are plundered, because the needy groan,
I will now arise,” says the LORD;
“I will place him in the safety for which he longs.”
The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him.
Nahum 1:7 (ESV)
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
John 10:11 (ESV)
Don’t let the darkness overwhelm you.
. . . no weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed,
and you shall confute every tongue that rises against you in judgment.
This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD
and their vindication from me, declares the LORD.”
Isaiah 54:17 (ESV)