Opening Prayer

Thank you Father, for your love that never changes. Thank you for the hope that is mine because of the gift of your Son Jesus.

Read PSALM 52

Psalm 52[a]

For the director of music. A maskil[b] of David. When Doeg the Edomite had gone to Saul and told him: “David has gone to the house of Ahimelek.”

Why do you boast of evil, you mighty hero?
    Why do you boast all day long,
    you who are a disgrace in the eyes of God?
You who practice deceit,
    your tongue plots destruction;
    it is like a sharpened razor.
You love evil rather than good,
    falsehood rather than speaking the truth.[c]
You love every harmful word,
    you deceitful tongue!

Surely God will bring you down to everlasting ruin:
    He will snatch you up and pluck you from your tent;
    he will uproot you from the land of the living.
The righteous will see and fear;
    they will laugh at you, saying,
“Here now is the man
    who did not make God his stronghold
but trusted in his great wealth
    and grew strong by destroying others!”

But I am like an olive tree
    flourishing in the house of God;
I trust in God’s unfailing love
    for ever and ever.
For what you have done I will always praise you
    in the presence of your faithful people.
And I will hope in your name,
    for your name is good.


  1. Psalm 52:1 In Hebrew texts 52:1-9 is numbered 52:3-11.
  2. Psalm 52:1 Title: Probably a literary or musical term
  3. Psalm 52:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and at the end of verse 5.

New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


‘Beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, praise instead of despair … they will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.’1

Think Further

David is incandescent with rage and his emotion is expressed with honesty through his gifts of music and writing. The psalm is then passed on to the community for corporate response and interpretation. Here we can see why the psalms are so precious to us. The emotions expressed are common to us all. The highs we often expect, the lows stir up all manner of responses.

David is angry that injustice still reigns, that just because he had consulted the priests at Nob, they were unnecessarily slaughtered.2 Saul had lost control. His growing envy, jealousy, and determination to succeed without God are in contrast with David’s character. David was witnessing an evil reign and his remark, ‘Why do you boast … mighty hero’ (v 1) is scathing, for what mighty warrior slaughters 85 gowned priests and their whole town?3 Whether David is talking of Saul or Doeg or both is unknown, but there is little to separate them. Jesus said that a tree is recognizable by its fruit4 and David substantiates the point. The evil ones will be uprooted, facing everlasting destruction (v 5), whereas David, depicted as an olive tree, signifies security, well-being and deep roots. David’s dismay and anger are well-founded, but he must make the same choice as we must in the face of injustice: to trust in the Lord, but also to bear righteous fruit, to act in line with God-given principles. David hopes for vindication in the future, but vengeance is not his. He is to serve as he is commanded, to follow as the Lord leads. Saul has trusted in wealth, power, and evil – earthly temporal fantasies, whereas David can flourish in spite of injustice, for God is trustworthy in unfailing love. To hope in his name is to live eternally (vs 8,9).


How do we respond to the injustice around us? Are we acting, speaking, and standing on God’s Word, or simply walking by?

Closing prayer

Gracious Lord, in all that concerns me, help me to rest in your wisdom, your patience, your love.

Last Updated on July 2, 2023 by kingstar

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