How to Approach this Psalm
Ask God to give you a desire and a delight for His word before you read it (Psalm 1:3). Ask God to help you to understand the meaning of His Word and how it should apply to your life. Ask God to search your heart (Psalm 139:23) and help you see your life clearly and to enable you put His Word into practice in your life.
How to Think Through this Psalm
Ask questions about the situation of the Psalm
Questions like- who wrote this Psalm?, was there a particular situation that the author was writing in?, are any particular circumstances mentioned in this Psalm?
Ask questions about the content of the Psalm
Questions like- what does this Psalm say about God? What does it say about man? What does it say about the way that God wants man to live? Does the Psalm give any commands? What principles does the Psalm portray? Does this Psalm speak at all about the problems men are in? Does this Psalm say anything about God’s solution to these problems? Does the writer say anything about what He trusts in or believes in this Psalm? Does the writer compare/contrast anything in this Psalm?
Ask questions about how this Psalm applies to your life
Is there anything in this Psalm that you need to remember and fight to believe? Does this Psalm give any commands that you need to live by? If so, are you submitting to God’s authority in that area of your life? What Scriptural principles can you learn from this Psalm that apply to your life? Does the way that you think/believe about anything need to change? What is one very specific way that you can put into practice something that you have learned from this Psalm?
After reading this Psalm
Think about it! Keep mentally chewing on it throughout the day. If you read your Bible in the morning, find ways to remind yourself of this Psalm throughout the day. If you read your Bible at night, think about this Psalm the next day. Maybe try to memorize one of the verses. Talk about this Psalm with other people. Leave a comment with questions that you have about the Psalm and with things that God has taught you from His Word and things you are thinking through. Let’s encourage each other with what God is teaching us in His Word.
Why Do You Hide Yourself?
1Why, O LORD, do you stand far away?
Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?
2In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor;
let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised.
3For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul,
and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the LORD.
4In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him;
all his thoughts are, “There is no God.”
5His ways prosper at all times;
your judgments are on high, out of his sight;
as for all his foes, he puffs at them.
6He says in his heart, “I shall not be moved;
throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity.”
7 His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression;
under his tongue are mischief and iniquity.
8He sits in ambush in the villages;
in hiding places he murders the innocent.
His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless;
9he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket;
he lurks that he may seize the poor;
he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net.
10The helpless are crushed, sink down,
and fall by his might.
11He says in his heart, “God has forgotten,
he has hidden his face, he will never see it.”
12 Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up your hand;
forget not the afflicted.
13Why does the wicked renounce God
and say in his heart, “You will not call to account”?
14But you do see, for you note mischief and vexation,
that you may take it into your hands;
to you the helpless commits himself;
you have been the helper of the fatherless.
15 Break the arm of the wicked and evildoer;
call his wickedness to account till you find none.
16 The LORD is king forever and ever;
the nations perish from his land.
17O LORD, you hear the desire of the afflicted;
you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear
18to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.