Have You Been Humbled into Gladness?

Greenville, SC in Fall (Left), and St. John’s Island, SC (Right)

David writes to be remembered. It is not himself that he wants to be remembered. It is his God. David is enthralled with YHWH  ( יְהֹוָה ). He is intoxicated with a vision of God and the knowledge of God’s greatness. Sixteen times he invokes the name of Israel’s God. Sixteen times he remembers that it is God who preserved him from both Saul and from the hand of an enemy of Israel (Gath). Sixteen times he reminds his heart and his readers/singers, YHWH is worthy of praise.

He longs for people, for the nation to know, the God he knows. “Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! / blessed is the man who take refuge in him!” (vs. 8). He sings of his God and invites Israel to magnify the LORD with him (vs. 1-10) then he teaches about his God (vs. 11-14) and finally, he sings of the great things that God does for those who take their refuge in YHWH (vs. 15-22).

And he has worked hard on his song.

Psalm 34 is an acrostic psalm. It is a psalm that (in English) has a hidden pneumonic device, but in its original composition, the Hebrew readers and singers were aided in their retention of the text by each verse beginning with the next letter in the Hebrew alphabet aDavid wanted his God, the only God, to be remembered and magnified, to be worshiped and exalted, to be trusted and obeyed.

Read Psalm 34.

Have You Been Humbled into Gladness?

Have you been humbled into gladness?
Have you learned to praise Him in every days moment?
Has your soul learned to boast in Him and His greatness?
Have you tasted Him? 
Have you begun the magnifying of His name with His people?
Have you learned that He vanquishes fear
and to our pleas gives ear?
When you learn the secret,
When you learn to delight in Him,
When your heart is reformed to a new affection,
He makes your heart radiant
and one day that radiance explodes into your face.
He makes your face radiant.
Poor men and women cry to Him
and He saves them.
He guards us with His angels;
And delivers us from our fears.
Oh, taste Him and see that He is good!

Take your refuge in Him
for He does not disappoint.
His eyes, and face and heart 
are always with the brokenhearted.
Though your heart be crushed
though your voice be cracked by cries

yet His ear is always open
and His deliverance will come.
For He has tasted your tears
and mingled them with His own
and will not rest till He brings you home.
Have you been humbled into gladness?
O taste and see that He is good!
Taste, and be forever changed.

a With two “imperfections”. Between verse 5-6, the vav is missing and in verse 22 the peh is repeated. The reason for these two anomalies remains a mystery.

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