by Jerry Vines

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In A Dry and Thirsty Land
Psalm 63
Jerry Vines

It seemed like every new experience David had in life was an occasion to write a
psalm about a new experience with God. It should be true of us that as we experience life
as it comes day by day, and encounter God’s blessings upon us and how God helps us in
these experiences, that we also should be writing songs of praise. Not Scripture like
David was writing, but we should find opportunities in the midst of our experiences to
learn something new about God, to praise Him, and learn to give Him glory for the great
deliverance which He gives to us.
This was a particularly tough time in the life of David. At the beginning of Psalm
63 it says, A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. There were two
primary times when David was in the wilderness. In the early years of his life when he
was running from Saul he spent many years as fugitive in the wilderness. Then, in the
latter years of life when his own son, Absalom, betrayed him and he was driven out of
Jerusalem he spent a period of time in the wilderness.
I don’t think there is any question that the latter time is in view here because in
verse 11 it says, “But the king shall rejoice in God.” David was the king in the Absalom
experience. He was not the king in the Saul experience. So, it seems pretty clean to me
that this particular psalm was composed by David in the circumstances when his own
son, Absalom, had driven him from the kingdom.
I think we have a description of this in II Samuel 15:23, “And all the country wept
with a loud voice, and all the people passed over, the King also himself passed over the
brook Kidron and all the people passed over toward the way of the wilderness.”
Now, the brook Kidron was on the east of Jerusalem. You went down into a
valley to that brook and then you went over the Mount of Olives and from there you
would go down to ...

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