You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
The kings of old used to make a banquet after having achieved victory in battle. At the banquet the enemy king who had been defeated was placed at the foot of the table where the winner ate as an act of humiliation to the loser and hence as a gesture of exaltation of the victor. Anointing the guest of honor with perfumed oil was another way of exalting him, and the availability of wine to gladden the guests to the celebration speaks of joy and satisfaction for being able to carry out the task successfully. In this portion of the famous Psalm 23 King David tells us that the foundation of his success is the power of God and that only to him he owes the privilege of celebrating victory over his enemies.
Have you recently achieved success in the tasks you have undertaken? If so, have you recognized that everything you achieved was because you had God’s help? and if you did not have any success, was it because you did not depend on God, but of your own strengths and abilities? The word of God tells us to commit to the LORD whatever we do, and he will establish our plans, that is, he will ensure that everything is brought to fruition. If we depend on our own strength, two things will happen. First, we will utterly fail and second, we will feel faint because our forces are limited, especially when compared to those of our formidable enemies. Conversely, if we depend on God two things will happen, one is that we will win by decisively defeating our adversaries and the other is that we did not have to use our own energy because God took care of everything and in the best way possible. Which of these two options do you prefer? Only to God be the glory!
Posted in Psalms
Tagged anointed, cup, enemies, God, head, Jesus, life, oil, overflow, prepare, presence, table
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,
foreigners cower before me;
as soon as they hear of me, they obey me.
Losing hope is something that can happen very easily, especially when we need it the most, ie when we are submerged up to our necks in deep trouble or when we have fallen so low that we hit the bottom. In those moments, when analyzing our situation, our mind tells us that there is no possible solution and that all is lost. Have you ever felt that way? It has happened to me several times. When problems relentlessly overwhelm us and conflicts arise from all directions there is very little time to focus on how we can escape the situation. Panic overwhelms us and the prospect that our life will soon cease to be becomes very evident. Even for an outsider, one that is not directly the subject of the difficulties, the situation will look like something inescapable and inevitable failure is soon to follow.
A couple of examples from the word of God come to mind. One is the case of Joseph, the son of Jacob. After being sold by his brothers into slavery, he ended up landing with his bones in prison. Everything was going from bad to worse, from free to slave, from slave to prisoner and if things continued like that, suddenly he would go from prisoner to cadaver. However, in due time God took him out of the terrible situation in which Joseph was placed and elevated him to nothing less than the second position of power and authority in the reign of Pharaoh. If that’s not an impressive and successful comeback, I don’t know what it is. The author of today’s passage, King David, also went through something similar. From being a fugitive in constant flight he became a powerful and successful king who conquered vast territories and amassed great fortunes. Can’t you see that for God nothing is impossible? No matter how large the problem that you find yourself in, you can be sure that God will always be able to bless you with a stunning comeback. You can trust him. Only to God be the glory!