Psalm 141 is the 141st psalm from the Book of Psalms.It is a plea to God not only for protection from one's enemies, but also from temptation to sin. The Lutheran Service Book and Evangelical Lutheran Worship feature the psalm prominently in their Evening Prayer services. This Psalm was written by David who was the youngest son of Jesse. David began his life as a shepherd but eventually became the king of Judah. David wrote this Psalm when he was in great distress. His own son expelled him and he was compelled to flee through Babylon. He pled to God whole heartedly in this Psalm asking God to bless him and his friends on doing good. Throughout the book of Psalms we see that David loved prayer and he always approached God for anything and even during this time of distress he asked God to work wonders.
In verses 1-4, David is pleading to God for an answer to his prayers (vs 1) as he longs to be heard. Prayer is a sacrifice and David hoped that his prayer might be like “the incense” and the “evening sacrifice”. (vs2) David “lifts his hands” to the Lord in prayer which tells us about the degree to which he was pleading to God. David was also afraid of sin so he asked God to keep him away from sin as he did not want to do something that is not acceptable to God.
In the latter half of the Psalm, David wishes to be told of his sin. David’s enemies accused him of something that was not true but he wanted God to reveal to him his sin. He hoped that his friends/righteous people would “strike” him or rebuke him as he believed that it would be their favour toward him. (Psalm 141:5)
His heart was still clearly drawn towards the unrighteous and wicked people who cannot see through their own sin, and he earnestly prayed to God about it. He wanted to stay away from sin and asks God to forgive them of their sin as well.
“Their rulers will be thrown down off a cliff” – David hoped that the wicked will eventually be told of their wrong doing. Someone can only see through the pain of the afflicted when they’re afflicted themselves which is why David wishes that they be thrown out of a cliff.
David also complained of the extraordinary furthest point to which he and his companions were lessened. (Psalm 141:7). David completely trusted in God, though, and asks for relief during his struggling times. Those who believe in God believe that he’s the only source of relief.(Psalm141:8). David asked God to “keep him” away from the snares of the wicked in verse 9. It’s hard for us to figure out the unforeseen and because God is supposed to know what happens in the future the mere Psalmist cried out to God for protection. He concludes this Psalm by hoping that the wicked fall into their own prey – something that they intentionally set for David but unintentionally for themselves.
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