Psalm 18: Victory Celebration

In what ways does God reveal his strength?

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Psalm 18:1–2 To the minister of music, a song of David, God’s servant who wrote these words on the day when the Lord delivered him from his enemies under King Saul.
I love you, Lord. You’re my strength.
God is my secure foundation, my protection in time of trouble, my deliverer. He is my strength in battle, one I can always trust to be at my side. He is my shield, my source of victory, my high tower that sees what is coming.
King James
Psalm 18:1–2 <To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, the servant of the Lord, who spake unto the Lord the words of this song in the day that the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul: And he said,> I will love thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.

How does calling upon the Lord influence our praise and God’s actions?

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Psalm 18:3–5 I called upon the Lord, singing his praises, and I was saved from my enemies.
Death had me by the neck. The threat from ungodly men terrified me. The ropes were ready to lower me into the grave, and death had me in its grasp.
Acts 16:24–25 So they were locked up in the innermost dungeon, with their feet secured in wooden stocks. At midnight, Paul and Silas were praying and singing praises to God, loud enough for everyone in the prison to hear.
King James
Psalm 18:3–5 I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies. The sorrows of death compassed me, and the floods of ungodly men made me afraid. The sorrows of hell compassed me. about: the snares of death prevented me.
Acts 16:24–25 Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.

If God is so far away, how does he hear our pleas?

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Psalm 18:6 In desperation, I cried unto the Lord. From his heavenly dwelling place faraway, he heard my voice and listened to my plea for help.
King James
Psalm 18:6 n my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.

With God holding power over all his creation, how can his will fail to be done?

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Psalm 18:7–15 An earthquake shook the mountains and caused the land to tremble from his anger. Smoke breathed out from God’s nostrils, and fire from his mouth left burning coals. The sky lowered, with ominous dark clouds under his feet.
His presence came with the angels, flying on the wings of the wind, robed with the darkness of rain-laden clouds covering the sky. Brightness went before him, lightning flashing and fiery hailstones falling from the clouds. With the hailstones and lightning, the Lord thundered his mighty voice from above. He sent lightning like arrows to destroy his enemies.
A blast of rebuke from his nostrils brought a mighty wind to channel the waters and expose the land.
Matthew 7:14 Only a few find the small gate and narrow road that lead to life.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord isn’t slow in keeping his promise, not like some people think. He is patient, not wanting anyone to perish, giving time for everyone to repent.
King James
Psalm 18:7–15 Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind. He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies. At the brightness that was before him his thick clouds passed, hail stones and coals of fire. The Lord also thundered in the heavens, and the Highest gave his voice; hail stones and coals of fire. Yea, he sent out his arrows, and scattered them; and he shot out lightnings, and discomfited them. Then the channels of waters were seen, and the foundations of the world were discovered at thy rebuke, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of thy nostrils.
Matthew 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it
2 Peter 3:9 he Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

In what ways do our feelings change when we are delivered from between the rock and the hard place?

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Psalm 18:16–19 The Lord reached down from above and rescued me from the raging seas. He delivered me from my fierce enemies, from those who hated me and were too powerful for me to overcome.
They came against me in my day of distress, but the Lord was my defense. Because of his great love, he saved me from between a rock and a hard place and brought me into the wide-open field.
King James
Psalm 18:16–19 He sent from above, he took me, he drew me out of many waters. He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them which hated me: for they were too strong for me. They prevented me in the day of my calamity: but the Lord was my stay. He brought me forth also into a large place; he delivered me, because he delighted in me.

How does having clean hands and a pure heart affect our prayers?

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Psalm 18:20 The Lord has rewarded me because I was innocent, having clean hands and a pure heart.
Luke 18:12–14 “‘Twice a week, I fast, and I never fail to give you a tenth of my income.’ The tax collector stood in the distance, away from other people, and would not so much as look up toward heaven. In despair, he pounded his chest and prayed, ‘God, have mercy on me, for I have sinned.’ I guarantee, the tax collector had peace with God when he went home, not the Pharisee. For those who try to make themselves great will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
King James
Psalm 18:20 The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands hath he recompensed me.
Luke 18:12–14 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

How much latitude do we have in following the Lord’s direction?

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1 Samuel 15:19 Why didn’t you do what the Lord said? He has seen the evil you have done in saving what you were told to destroy.
Psalm 18:21–23 I have followed the Lord’s direction and would never turn away from doing what he wants. I considered God’s precepts and refused to adjust even one to suit what I wanted. Blameless before the Lord, I shielded my desires from anything that might displease him.
Philippians 3:7 Even so, all that made me feel good about myself back then, I now consider worthless in yielding to what Christ wants to do in my life.
King James
1 Samuel 15:19 Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the Lord, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the Lord?
Psalm 18:21–23 For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly departed from my God. For all his judgments were before me, and I did not put away his statutes from me. I was also upright before him, and I kept myself from mine iniquity.
Philippians 3:7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.

To what degree do our desires control our actions? How can our actions change our desires?

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Psalm 18:24 So the Lord has seen the good my hands have done because I desired to do right.
King James
Psalm 18:24 Therefore hath the Lord recompensed me according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands in his eyesight.

If God loves everyone, why doesn’t he show kindness to everyone?

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Psalm 18:25 He will be kind to those who show kindness to others and good to those who do good.
King James
Psalm 18:25 With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful; with an upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright;

How far should “companionship” go in reaching out to those who don’t know?

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Psalm 18:26–27 For the clean, God, you are clean, but for the perverse, you are different. You rescue the poor and afflicted but put down the proud and conceited.
Romans 12:18 Arguing with people builds strife, which you want to avoid. Do your best to live peaceably with everyone.)
1 Corinthians 9:22 When people are weak, I empathize with their fragile faith in order to bring them to Christ. I do my best to find common ground with everyone, seeking to help them get from where they are to where God wants them to be.
King James
Psalm 18:26–27 With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure; and with the froward thou wilt shew thyself froward. For thou wilt save the afflicted people; but wilt bring down high looks.
Romans 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
1 Corinthians 9:22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

What has God done to give us light?

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Psalm 18:28 As the flame makes the lamp give light, so you illuminate my darkness.
John 1:4 Life itself came from him, and this life gave light to everyone.
John 8:12 Later, Jesus said to the people, “I am the light of the world. Those who follow me will never walk in darkness, because they have the light of life.”
King James
Psalm 18:28 For thou wilt light my candle: the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.
John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
John 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

How far can we go in God’s strength?

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Psalm 18:29 With God’s strength, I can fight through an army. By his power, I can scale the high wall.
Matthew 21:21 Know this for certain. If you have unwavering faith, you will not only do things like this, but you will say to this mountain, ‘Rise and be thrown into the sea,’ and it will obey.
Philippians 4:13 In all situations, no matter how little or how much I have, I must depend on Christ for my strength and guidance.
King James
Psalm 18:29 For by thee I have run through a troop; and by my God have I leaped over a wall.
Matthew 21:21 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Why might people have trouble accepting the claim that God’s ways are perfect?

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Psalm 18:30–32 God’s ways are perfect. The truth of his word has stood the test of time. He’s a 24/7 protector of those who trust him. Is anyone as great as God? He alone is our rock of security.
God shows me the perfect way and gives me strength to walk it.
King James
Psalm 18:30–32 As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him. For who is God save the Lord? or who is a rock save our God? It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect.

If God guides our steps and makes us surefooted, how can we stumble?

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Psalm 18:33–36 He makes me surefooted like the deer, so I will not stumble when the climb is steep.
He trains my hands for battle and gives me strength to pull the bow.
Lord, you are my shield, protecting me in every situation. With your right hand, you keep me from falling. Your help brought my success.
You cleared the way before me so my feet wouldn’t slip.
King James
Psalm 18:33–36 He maketh my feet like hinds’ feet, and setteth me upon my high places. He teacheth my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms. Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation: and thy right hand hath holden me up, and thy gentleness hath made me great. Thou hast enlarged my steps under me, that my feet did not slip.

How much effort does God expect from us in the defeat of his enemies?

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Psalm 18:37–43 I pursued my enemies and wouldn’t let up until I caught them and they were destroyed. Struck down by my sword, they could not get up and were trampled beneath my feet.
You gave me strength for the victory, bringing down my enemies who came against me. You caused my enemies to turn in flight so I could destroy those who hated me. They cried for help, but no one would help them. They prayed, but you would not answer. I ground them to powder, like dust blown by the wind. I threw them out like the filth in the streets.
You delivered me from contentious people and made me the leader of nations, causing strangers to serve me.
King James
Psalm 18:37–43 I have pursued mine enemies, and overtaken them: neither did I turn again till they were consumed. I have wounded them that they were not able to rise: they are fallen under my feet. For thou hast girded me with strength unto the battle: thou hast subdued under me those that rose up against me. Thou hast also given me the necks of mine enemies; that I might destroy them that hate me. They cried, but there was none to save them: even unto the Lord, but he answered them not. Then did I beat them small as the dust before the wind: I did cast them out as the dirt in the streets. Thou hast delivered me from the strivings of the people; and thou hast made me the head of the heathen: a people whom I have not known shall serve me.

What causes people to lose their courage?

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Psalm 18:44–45 When foreigners hear of my coming, they bow before me. With no courage to fight, they abandon their strongholds.
King James
Psalm 18:44–45 As soon as they hear of me, they shall obey me: the strangers shall submit themselves unto me. The strangers shall fade away, and be afraid out of their close places.

Of what value is an idol of stone? Why do people have them?

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Psalm 18:46 The Lord is not an idol of stone. He’s alive, my rock of security. Let God be praised for keeping me safe.
King James
Psalm 18:46 The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted.

How can we prove God is real?

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Psalm 18:46–49 The Lord is not an idol of stone. He’s alive, my rock of security. Let God be praised for keeping me safe.
You made me victorious, bringing people under my authority. You saved me from my enemies, lifting me above those who opposed me. You protected me from their violent attacks. I will declare your greatness among foreigners, O Lord, singing praises that you are our King.
King James
Psalm 18:46–49 The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted. It is God that avengeth me, and subdueth the people under me. He delivereth me from mine enemies: yea, thou liftest me up above those that rise up against me: thou hast delivered me from the violent man. Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O Lord, among the heathen, and sing praises unto thy name.

After considering all of David’s sins, how could God show relentless love to him and his descendants?

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Psalm 18:50 An abundant salvation is given to God’s King. You show relentless love to your anointed one, to David, and to his descendants forever.
King James
Psalm 18:50 Great deliverance giveth he to his king; and sheweth mercy to his anointed, to David, and to his seed for evermore.