Thirsting after God (Psalm 63)

The Hebrew language is a fascinating study. Those who have a keen interest in language will find that our Western approach to understand human expression differs to that in the East. The study of words and their roots, where they find their original meaning, in the Hebrew language is driven by function. For instance the word for steadfast love in Psalms 63:3 has its root in hesed, the Hebrew noun for stork, which in verb form conveys a picture of the protective care it gives its young. God cares and provides for us and always seeks our welfare. David has experienced God’s steadfast love many times which has led him to desire God even more.

Desire for God is not something left to the philosophers or professionals to define for us. David does it in verse 1 when he speaks about thirsting after God. Quite a vivid picture of thirst is found in Psalm 42:1: As a dear pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for God. It is only natural for a deer in the woods to seek water for survival. There is no indication here of a chase or any immediate circumstance that compels the deer to seek water other than an innate physical need for it. Such is the soul’s need for God. When left in its natural state, the soul does not seek after God, but when the Spirit works and regenerates it, then the heart of man is turned to God and our affections are predisposed to His service. This is why David could devote himself to bless God as long as he lives. Psalm 63:4a

I am not sure what your motif is in life, but trouble awaits when God is not your life’s focus. In the epilogue of Psalm 63, David declares what can be expected for those who oppose him, and while it may sound somewhat arrogant of David to pronounce judgement on his enemies, virtually in all seventy five psalms by David there lies an inseparable relationship between his kingly rule and that of God’s. In other words, any challenge to David’s life and rule, was to be understood as a direct assault on God and His people. So David is speaking on behalf of God when he describes the dread that awaits his opponents: shall go down into the depths of the earth vv.9 – a reference to hell, and shall be a portion of the jackals vv 10 – when David’s pursuers were killed their unburied bodies were eaten by scavengers, considered to be a death of shame and dishonour.

Where do your loyalties lie? Are you firmly on the side of David’s God and enjoying Him? If you are and your desire is true, then you would spend time with Him, in worship, prayer, meditation on the Scriptures, and trusting Him daily. If not, I would recommend that you start with God’s great love that was shown to us on Calvary and consider your own need for forgiveness. His Son was nailed to a cross so that we may be granted eternal life. His love is beyond anything you or I will ever encounter on this earth. Will you consider your end before it is too late and come under his protective care by trusting in Christ for the forgiveness of your sins now!