This psalm is a song of confidence and triumph. Yet, each verse also prompts new reflections about who God is and where God might be discerned. While the psalmist professes unyielding trust in God, the psalm is also delicately personal and paints God as approachable, caring, and radiant with beauty.
1 Yahweh, you are my light, my salvation; whom shall I fear?
You are the fortress of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
2 When my enemies attack me,
Spreading vicious lies about me, wherever they go,
They, my adversaries and foes, will stumble and fall.
3 Though an army mounts a siege against me, my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me, I will still be confident.
4 One thing I ask of you, Yahweh; One thing I seek:
that I may dwell in your house all the days of my life,
to gaze on your beauty and to meditate in your Temple.
5 For in the day of trouble You will keep me safe in your dwelling
You will hide me in the shelter of your sacred tent and set me high upon a rock.
6 Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me;
I will offer in your sacred tent sacrifices of great joy;
I will sing and make music to you, Yahweh.
7 Hear my voice when I call, Yahweh; Have mercy on me and answer me.
8 You say to my heart, “Seek my face,” and so it is your face I seek!
9 Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your faithful one away in anger;
Do not reject nor abandon me, O God of my salvation, for you are my only help
10 Even if my own parents reject me, You, Yahweh, will accept me.
11 Teach me your way, Yahweh; and lead me on a straight path because of my oppressors.
12 Do not turn me over to the will of my foes,
for false witnesses rise up against me, spouting accusations.
13 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of Yahweh in the land of the living.
14 Wait for God; be strong and take heart and wait for Yahweh.
- Do the first words of the psalm help you to live with “no fear?” If so, how? If not, why not?
- What markers do you typically use to define if your life is going well or not?
- Where could you use God’s “light” in your life?
- How have you experienced God’s “salvation” and “stronghold”?
- When waiting for God, what sustains you?
- “For in the day of trouble you will keep me safe in your dwelling.” What are “safe spaces” for you?
- “…to gaze on your beauty…” What does your relationship with God look like?
Loving God, it is our duty and our joy to praise and thank you today and every day. You are our Creator and our Savior, faithful from age to age, and we bless your holy name.
Accept our hymns of praise that we offer in union with all creation, for all the powers of heaven and earth acclaim and exalt you, now and forever.
When an event like the massacre of LGBT people at Pulse Nightclub, Orlando, Florida, on June 12, 2016, happens, the shock and grief do not easily leave us. Even as time heals some wounds, few words encapsulate all that is felt by mourners, LGBT communities, and a shaken society.
The last words of Psalm 27 are, “be strong and take heart, and wait for Yahweh” and the following music video, ” We Stand United,” written in response to the Pulse massacre, captures some of the same confidence and triumph of the psalmist, David.