Sunday, September 1, 2013

26 Elul: Psalm 27

Of David. The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; from whom shall I be frightened? When evildoers draw near to me to devour my flesh, my adversaries and my enemies against me-they stumbled and fell. 
If a camp encamps against me, my heart shall not fear; if a war should rise up against me, in this I trust. One [thing] I ask of the Lord, that I seek-that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to see the pleasantness of the Lord and to visit His Temple every morning. That He will hide me in His tabernacle on the day of calamity; He will conceal me in the secrecy of His tent; He will lift me up on a rock. And now, my head will be raised over my enemies around me, and I will sacrifice in His tent sacrifices with joyous song; I will sing and chant praise to the Lord. Hearken, O Lord, to my voice [which] I call out, and be gracious to me and answer me. On Your behalf, my heart says, "Seek My presence." Your presence, O Lord, I will seek. Do not hide Your presence from me; do not turn Your servant away with anger. You were my help; do not forsake me and do not abandon me, O God of my salvation. For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord gathers me in. Instruct me, O Lord, in Your way, and lead me in the straight path because of those who lie in wait for me. Do not deliver me to the desires of my adversaries, for false witnesses and speakers of evil have risen against me. Had I not believed in seeing the good of the Lord in the land of the living! Hope for the Lord, be strong and He will give your heart courage, and hope for the Lord.- Psalms Chapter 27

Every year I commit to saying the above Psalm every day from the first day of Elul until the end of Sukkot.  I don't know too much about it.  I think it is an appropriate Psalm for the time of year since it does have mentioned of the sounds of Truah (shofar sounds) and mentions dwelling in G-d's tent (i.e. like a Sukkah).  

I've never taken a deeper look at this Psalm, even though I spend so much time with it each year.  King David is asking for G-d's help from his adversaries, which is the content of many of the Psalms.  I find it interesting (now that I look at it), that he is also asking G-d to hide him, and again asking G-d not to be hidden (which to me seems to add another holiday in the Jewish calendar, that of Purim).  

My other question is that at the end, it seems King David is telling the reader to trust in G-d, but throughout he is asking for G-d's help, shouldn't he taken his own advice?  He even mentions that G-d helped him when even his parents abandoned him.  

Do you know why we read this Psalm daily and not any of the others?  Do you know any deeper meaning of the words?

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