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Weds 13 October - Psalm 69

Psalm 69

Save me, O God,
    for the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in the miry depths,
    where there is no foothold.
I have come into the deep waters;
    the floods engulf me.
I am worn out calling for help;
    my throat is parched.
My eyes fail,
    looking for my God.
Those who hate me without reason
    outnumber the hairs of my head;
many are my enemies without cause,
    those who seek to destroy me.
I am forced to restore
    what I did not steal.

You, God, know my folly;
    my guilt is not hidden from you.

Lord, the Lord Almighty,
    may those who hope in you
    not be disgraced because of me;
God of Israel,
    may those who seek you
    not be put to shame because of me.
For I endure scorn for your sake,
    and shame covers my face.
I am a foreigner to my own family,
    a stranger to my own mother’s children;
for zeal for your house consumes me,
    and the insults of those who insult you fall on me.
10 When I weep and fast,
    I must endure scorn;
11 when I put on sackcloth,
    people make sport of me.
12 Those who sit at the gate mock me,
    and I am the song of the drunkards.

13 But I pray to you, Lord,
    in the time of your favor;
in your great love, O God,
    answer me with your sure salvation.
14 Rescue me from the mire,
    do not let me sink;
deliver me from those who hate me,
    from the deep waters.
15 Do not let the floodwaters engulf me
    or the depths swallow me up
    or the pit close its mouth over me.

16 Answer me, Lord, out of the goodness of your love;
    in your great mercy turn to me.
17 Do not hide your face from your servant;
    answer me quickly, for I am in trouble.
18 Come near and rescue me;
    deliver me because of my foes.

19 You know how I am scorned, disgraced and shamed;
    all my enemies are before you.
20 Scorn has broken my heart
    and has left me helpless;
I looked for sympathy, but there was none,
    for comforters, but I found none.
21 They put gall in my food
    and gave me vinegar for my thirst.

22 May the table set before them become a snare;
    may it become retribution and[b] a trap.
23 May their eyes be darkened so they cannot see,
    and their backs be bent forever.
24 Pour out your wrath on them;
    let your fierce anger overtake them.
25 May their place be deserted;
    let there be no one to dwell in their tents.
26 For they persecute those you wound
    and talk about the pain of those you hurt.
27 Charge them with crime upon crime;
    do not let them share in your salvation.
28 May they be blotted out of the book of life
    and not be listed with the righteous.

29 But as for me, afflicted and in pain—
    may your salvation, God, protect me.

30 I will praise God’s name in song
    and glorify him with thanksgiving.
31 This will please the Lord more than an ox,
    more than a bull with its horns and hooves.
32 The poor will see and be glad—
    you who seek God, may your hearts live!
33 The Lord hears the needy
    and does not despise his captive people.

34 Let heaven and earth praise him,
    the seas and all that move in them,
35 for God will save Zion
    and rebuild the cities of Judah.
Then people will settle there and possess it;
36     the children of his servants will inherit it,
    and those who love his name will dwell there.

- - -

Meditation on Psalm 69

  1. Campbell Morgan summarises this Psalm as: ‘Perhaps in no psalm in the whole psalter is the sense of sorrow profounder or more intense than in this. The soul of the singer pours itself out in unrestrained abandonment to the overwhelming and terrible grief which consumes it.’


Just a skim read will give you a clue as to the depths in which the Psalmist is struggling.


  • fear of drowning – ‘the waters are up to my neck’
  • fear of sinking – ‘I sink in the miry depths’
  • fear of slipping – ‘there is no foothold’
  • fear of being overwhelmed – ‘the floods engulf me’
  • fear of exhaustion – ‘I am worn out’
  • fear of loss of sight – ‘my eyes fail looking for my God’
  • fear of others – ‘those who hate me without reason…’
  • fear of death – ‘those who seek to destroy me’
  • fear of false accusations – ‘I am forced to restore what I did not steal’



And these are just in verses 1-4!


Someone said about the Wisdom Literature in the Bible that ‘Proverbs tells you what life should be about’; Job tells you what life is about and the Psalms tell you how you react to life.’


There’s just one glimmer of hope in those opening verses – i.e. the Psalmist cries out to God when he says “Save me O God.”
And he longs for God when he says that his eyes ‘fail, looking for my God.’ There is that personal relationship that the Psalmist has with God, as do we through the work of the Lord Jesus on the Cross.




David knew that he had sinned. There have been times when he pleads his innocence, as do we.
There are times when he confesses his sins and knows the mercy and forgiveness of God, as do we. 

And this has a knock-on effect on others, both the people of God as well as his own family.

He prays that the LORD won’t let these sins have a detrimental effect on ‘those who hope in the LORD’; that they ‘are not disgraced because of me’; that they are not ‘put to shame because of me.’


In his faith journey the Psalmist recognises that his ‘zeal for your house’ which ‘consumes me’ is having a negative effect on his family and others.


The disciples of Jesus remembered this statement when Jesus cleared out the temple – John 2:13-17

We also remember that Jesus endured ‘scorn and mocking’ as the Psalmist recounts his own experiences.


‘You, God, know……’ leads to:




  • he appeals to the mercy (favour) of God
  • he appeals to the love of God

He comes back to the opening verses in his prayer:

  • rescue me
  • deliver me
  • turn to me
  • answer me quickly


‘You know what’s happening LORD.

  • deal with my enemies
  • pour out your wrath
  • blot them out of the book of life

These are tough prayers but we remember that one day God will overthrow all that is evil.
We pray that His righteousness will prevail and that the evil one will be thwarted in all his activities against the people of God.


So many of these verses apply to Jesus as does Psalm 22.
These two Psalms, along with Psalm 110, are the most quoted Psalms in the New Testament.




‘I WILL praise God’s name…’

‘I WILL glorify Him with thanksgiving…’


And what a future there is for the people of God as we look forward to the glory of heaven after all the trials and tribulations of earth. 

‘Those who love His name will dwell there.’

- - -  

(Roger Purdom) 


New International Version - UK (NIVUK)
Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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