Psalm 43: Hope in Troubling Times

How do we defend ourselves against ungodly people?

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Author’s Paraphrase
Psalm 43:1 Judge in my favor, God, and defend me against these ungodly people. Deliver me from the deceitful, wicked liars.
King James
Psalm 43:1 Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

Does God neglect us, or does it just seem that way? Why?

Author’s Thoughts
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Psalm 43:2 You are my strength, so why have you neglected me. Why must I mourn from the oppression of the enemy?
King James
Psalm 43:2 For thou art the God of my strength: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

What might we need to do for light to shine upon our paths?

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Author’s Paraphrase
Psalm 43:3 Shine your light upon my path, and guide me with your truth to your holy mountain where you live.
Psalm 119:105 Your Word is a lamp to keep my feet from stumbling, a light that shines before me to show the way you want me to go.
King James
Psalm 43:3 O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.
Psalm 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

How does God guide us into truth?

Author’s Thoughts
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Psalm 43:3 Shine your light upon my path, and guide me with your truth to your holy mountain where you live.
John 16:13 But when the Spirit of Truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own authority but will say only what he hears. He will reveal to you things to come.
King James
Psalm 43:3 O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.
John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

What must happen before we can live where God lives?

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Psalm 24:3–4 Who will climb the Lord’s mountain? Who will live where he lives? Only those whose guilt has been washed away, who have pure motives, who have not been self-serving manipulators.
Psalm 43:3 Shine your light upon my path, and guide me with your truth to your holy mountain where you live.
John 14:2–3 There are many places where you can stay in my Father’s house. I would have told you if that were not true. I must go to make the place ready for you. After I have prepared for your arrival, I will come back for you so we can be there together.
King James
Psalm 24:3–4 Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.
Psalm 43:3 O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.
John 14:2–3 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

What does it mean to “approach God’s altar”?

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Psalm 43:4 With great joy I will approach your altar, Lord God, and I will praise you with the harp.
King James
Psalm 43:4 Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.

How can making sacrifices give us joy and praise to God?

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Psalm 43:4 With great joy I will approach your altar, Lord God, and I will praise you with the harp.
King James
Psalm 43:4 Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.

How can we help ourselves by asking why we are discouraged or upset?

Author’s Thoughts
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Author’s Paraphrase
Psalm 43:5 Why am I discouraged? Why am I so upset? My hope for help rests entirely with you, so I praise you, my deliverer and my God.
King James
Psalm 43:5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.