Psalm 20 is a Psalm of David and is entitled “A Plea for God’s Help”. Although not much is known as to the history or the reason for this Psalm, it is believed to be a call for the Lord’s help as the king and the armies of Israel go off into the battle.
On a daily basis, those of us who are saved enter the battle field of Satan. The Bible gives us the tools that we need to be victorious over his tricks. Psalm 20 is one of those tools that we can use to fight this battle. Notice, if you will, that the petitions that are raised invoke the omnipotent power of God’s protection for His people.
1. The Lord hears in our time of trouble – v. 1
When we cry out to the Lord, He hears us. The Psalmist in the 17th Psalm cries out in verse six, “I have called upon thee, for thou wilt hear me, O God: incline thine ear unto me, and hear my speech.” The confidence that we have in the Lord is that He hears us and bows down His ear to us.
2. The Lord will defend thee – v. 1
The Bible tells us that the Lord is our buckler, shield, and mighty tower. “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower (Ps 18:2).” All of these speak to the defense that we have in the Lord.
3. The Lord will send help- v. 2
As I read the Bible, I find that in many instances where the God of Heaven sends help at just the right time. Sisera was bearing down on the children of Israel with his chariots of iron. The Lord sent a rain that muddied the mountains and caused the chariots to stick in the muck and mire. Sisera fled on foot and came to the tent of Jael. She fed him and gave him respite so he could rest and while he slept, she drove a tent spike through his head. The novice would say, coincidence; but the child of God knows that the Lord is his defense in times of trouble.
4. The Lord will remember thy offerings – v. 3
The sacrifices and offerings that the Lord desires from His children is a “broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise (Psalm 51:16).” Too many times we allow pride and arrogance to get in the way of our relationship with the Lord. We think, “I got this.” We need to be sure that we humble ourselves and allow God to have the control of our lives.
5. The Lord will accept our sacrifices – v. 3
The Lord told Israel that He was tired of their sacrifices because they were given in an attitude of obligation and not from the heart. If we want God to accept the gifts that we give to Him, we should give them out of a heart of love and adoration for what He has done for us through His Son, Jesus Christ. The Lord accepts those gifts that are heart gifts.
6. The Lord will grant the desire of your heart – v. 4
The 21st Psalm has an amazing truth to behold on this point. “The king shall joy in Thy strength, O Lord; and in Thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice! Thou hast given him his heart’s desire, and hast not withholden the request of his lips. Selah (Psalm 21:1, 2).” The theologians can’t agree on the definition of the word ‘Selah’; but the basic meaning is ‘stop, meditate, and chew on this truth.’ If that is the meaning, then we need to muse over the fact that the Lord gives us the desires of our heart. The truth is that when our hearts are in tune with His heart through the Holy Spirit, our desires and His desires are going to be one in the same!
7. The Lord will fulfill all His counsel – v. 4
Can we trust the Lord to do what is best for us? Absolutely! He wants the best for his children and He delights in meeting our needs! Ps 37:4 says, “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”
What is the result of God’s defense of His children? What is the natural response of His goodness to us? The answer is found in verse 5.
1. We will rejoice in Thy salvation.
2. We will set up Thy banners in Your name. The banners raised identify us with the One for whom we fight. The American Flag is the standard for us who are Americans. That flag was lifted over the ramparts as the rockets flamed in the night. The Flag of our Saviour is stained red with the blood of the martyrs who stood for the faith of God. We, too, should lift the Banner of God to this lost and dying world.
3. We will receive the answer to our prayers and we trust the Lord in the midst of our trials and tribulations.