The experience of faith in the psalms (Part 6: David is certain in God forever)

Theme: /
David is certain in God forever
Text: /
Psalm 52: 10-11
Textpart(s) to read: /
1 Samuel 22: 6-23
Psalm 52: 1-9
Psalm 52: 10-11
By: /
Rev. H. Drost (minister reformed church -liberated- at Houten)
Ds. H. Drost (predikant gereformeerde kerk vrijgem. Houten)
Translated by:

G.A. de Jager (linguistic modifications: by R.J.C. Vos).
Original Dutch version:
6: Ps052v10 - David is zeker in God voor altijd

Delivered at: /
Gehouden te:

Delft on the 9th of July 2000
Originally delivered in Dutch in Haren (1999)

Remark RJCV: /
Opmerking RJCV

The parts of the sermonseries about The experience of faith in the psalms can be read seperately. The translation of the sermonseries consists of:
4: Ps042v05 - Faith speaks against your feelings
6: Ps052v10 - David is certain in God forever

The other parts (in Dutch) may be found by selecting Dutch for sermon language in the search window.


- Introduction to the sermonseries: The experience of faith in the psalms.
- Prayer

Suggestions for the Order of Worship / Aanwijzingen voor de Liturgie

1. Votum and Salutation
2. Congregational singing: Ps. 63: 1
3. The Ten Words of the Covenant
4. Congregational singing: Ps. 63: 2-4
5. Prayer 1
6. First reading: 1 Samuël 22: 6-23 [ Flight of Davids => 1 Samuel 21: 10 ]
7. Ps. 52: 1-4
8. Second reading: Psalm 52: 1-9
    Text: Psalm 52: 10-11
9. Ministry of the Word, after the first point: Ps. 52: 5
10. Responsive song: Ps. 52: 6
11. Prayer
12. Offertory
13. Closing song (Dutch: Gez. 36: 3)
14. Benediction

Prayer 1


Mighty is your voice. The world shakes by hearing it. The world will crush through thou violence. We are nothing compared to thy power. Impressive is thy power.

You rage over the world so that they will acknowledge your power and give in. But here in the church you speak, so that we will enjoy your love. Every Sunday you speak in love. Your patience, in always seeking our hearts. There is no sign of tiredness in pulling us through words of light and life. This is how good and how loving you speak.

Help us read the bible, listen to the sermon and participate in the service in such a way that we will hear thou declaration of love and answer it with all our hearts.


Beloved congregation in Christ,

Are you sure in your faith? Are you forever secured in God? Will you rise to heaven? When these questions are asked, there is a lot of uncertainty. Is one aloud to say that one goes to heaven? In catechism classes the young people say you can never know for sure.

Why is this? Where does this doubt come from? It has to do with the fact that in our hearts we are still Roman Catholics. We also often think 'God has done good things through Jesus Christ… but now we still have to finish it'. And yes if you think you have to depend on your self, insecurity is a result. Because as a believer you learn yourself as unreliable and unwilling. 'How is it ever going to be right if it depends on me?' It is this question that makes a lot of Christians unsecure.

To get out of this we have to let go of this way of thinking. The way of thinking that we have to do it all one our own. We have to let go of ourselves. To go back to the ABC of faith means that we have to trust God completely and distrust ourselves. Where this believe will break through, that our fait is not ours, but depended on God, security will be born.

We can learn a lot from David about this security in faith. David looks up to God in his problems and expects it all from Him.

The Theme for the sermon is:

David is forever certain about God

  1. This certainty depends/rests on trust - verse 10
  2. This certainty leads to singing - verse 11

David is forever certain about God.

1. This certainty depends/rests on trust - verse 10

Hitler, Ceaucescu, Saddam Hussein- these are all names of people that abuse there power in such a way that they are called dictators. A dictator is someone who has a lot of power, but knows that he is hated. His life is in danger. He sees danger everywhere and is for that reason unpredictable. His fear makes him dangerous.
The bible describes Saul this way in 1 Samuel 22, as an dictator. He has a group of friends that became wealthy of him, but his fear and suspicion makes him dangerous. When he here's that David created his own little army, he trust's nobody, not even his own people. He accuses them of playing against him behind his back. He has an threatening attitude.

A foreigner named Doug takes the kings mind off of these things. He tells the king what he saw in Nob: 'Ahimelech gave the rebels weapons and food.' It is true what he says, but it's the half of the truth. He doesn't mention that the priest does not know about anything. Half the truth is a whole lie. In this situation it looks like the priest betrayed the king. And this a lie. In Psalm 52 David names him as someone 'who betrays' (verse 4).

When Saul starts to think that the priests betray him to, he loses it. He lets the priests come by and gave them the order to kill the "the priests of the Lord" (1 Samuel 22: 17). This is not just something. Saul's bodyguard refuses to obey the order. Then Doug enters the picture. This heathen has no respect at all for the priests of the Lord. He is willing to do it and kills 85 priests. And if this wasn't enough, he enters Nob, the city of the priests and kills everybody and everything (1 Samuel 22: 19). He is proud of what he had done. In the third verse of this psalm David calls him who loves "... evil more than good, and lying more than speaking the truth".

This is not normal, it is not human. This is a… devil. Did you also recognize that David does not call him by his name? He speaks in general of the man of lies and violence. This is the man that serves evil with love (Psalm 52: 5-6). The man who serves the devil. It's all about uprising against God. All David says in this Psalm is not a personal issue. It's an issue of God against his big opponent, who wants to destroy Gods work.

And because it is Gods issue, His fight, David can say that God will break his opponent. It is mentioned literary "God….will uproot you from the land of the living" (verse 7). The man of tyrant who thought would get far with this violence, has no future. He is as an tree that has been pulled out of the ground. The roots are not able to suck life in them anymore. He is dead, and will stay that way.

"But I [!] -says our text- am as an living olive tree in the house of God". David sees himself as a tree whereas the roots still suck life in them. He compares himself to beautiful trees "in the house of God". With this he says that his future is in the house of God. He will grow under His protection.

How can David say this? How can he say that he will live in Gods house while he had to flee from Gods sanctuary? Does he still know what he is saying? He explains himself in verse 10 of Psalm 52: "I trust in the steadfast love of God for ever and ever". He says you can trust God on his word. What then did God tell David? God had David anointed. David would be king over Israel. And because God had said this, David keeps to his important future. He keeps God to His word.

David says he will trust God forever. This is a long time. Who will trust on God, has a future. And we know out of the rest of the bible how true this became.

David becomes king. On his throne the Lord Jesus came. And this king on David's throne won from Gods opponent. God breaks all powers through Jesus Christ that upraise against him. That is the prospect of this Psalm. David was very sure, I believe, although he hadn't seen anything yet.

Faith speaks against experience. David has to hide far from Gods house. That is his experience. But David believes that he is safe with God. "a green olive tree in the house of God ." That is faith. Someone said once: it is the nature of faith: "that opens the ears and closes the eyes". It means that faith is not lead by what you see, but by what God says in his Word.

What doe you see in yourself? Don't you see sin in your own life? Do they come back every time? Maybe they seem to get worse? Will I be saved? Will I enter heaven? Uncertainty arises.

Faith closes eye's and opens ears. You start to listen to what God has to say, and Hear, what does the LORD have to say? He says: 'see, the lam that carries the sins out of this world' , also yours. This voice tells us about Christ.

In our life there are more voices. Voice of your conscience, that you sinned against the law of God. This inner voice gets support from the devil. He shows us our dirty clothes. Is he right in this? Of course, but still he ís not right,,, Gods voice sounds 'go away Satan' . And then the Lord says to the man in the dirty clothes in front of Him 'I'll take away your injustice and give you feast clothes' (Zachary 3: 4). God takes away our sins through Christ to celebrate the feast of reconciliation.

Listen to him, who speaks about his Son. Don't look at your self, look at Christ who did everything good, in your place. He obeyed, through Him God sees you as an obeying child. You are priceless in His eye's . Listening to the voice of God learns you the certainty of faith.

David also closed his eye's when he was hiding, but he heard. He thought about the promise of God. And he held to that, not knowing how everything was going to end. He sang "but in Gods house I shall be, like a green tree."

[ We sing Ps. 52: 5 ].

The theme for the sermon is: David is forever certain about God. This certainty 1. depends on trust and

2. This certainty leads us to sing - verse 11

Hitler had his Himmler... Saul had his Doeg. A dictator collects people around him that are even more evil than himself. Is also counts for Doeg. He is a foreigner from Edom, the people of Esau that have always hated the people of Jacob.

In chapter 21 it is told that he was in the sanctuary of God (1 Samuel 21: 7). It means that he is there for religious reasons. He served the God of Israel. But for the form, you have to serve the God of the country you are in, is it not? In chapter 22 it becomes clear that his serving of the LORD was a form. He did not mind killing 85 priests of God

David composed Psalm 52 after this brutal act of violence against the people of God. But, as we saw in the first point, David does not cherish personal hate, David sees it as God's issue.

No personal hate? Maybe, but does David not say in verse 2 that the justice will laugh over the misfortune of the violent one. Is this not unholy glee? No, this is not meant this way. God's people don't act in this way. Because the Lord does not want us to have pleasure over the misfortune of others (Proverbs 24: 17-18b). But what does it mean?

If we read very precise we see that in verse 8 it first says that the people in justice will "fear", when they see how God will punish the tyrant. There will be respect for the work of God and at the same time joy over his work. They will be happy and "laugh" that God does justice. And this joy in His victory they will share in a hymn about the tyrant:
"See the man who would not make God his refuge,
but trusted in the abundance of his riches,
and sought refuge in his wealth!"
(verse 9). It is a hymn about him. He himself is not a subject, he is not heard, he is gone...

In this point the contrast is very sharp in our text. You don't hear the tyrant anymore, but David the more. "I will thank thee for ever, because thou hast done it." (verse 11). This again shows the great trust in God. David trusts God in such a way that he says he will sing for the Lord forever. This certainty in faith brings you to sing.

There are a lot of people who do not like these Psalms of certainty. They say that these Psalms show how good we think we are. It is a danger. The devil will try everything: transform certainty in God into self-assured.

If we take this in account and look at the text we see that David who is very sure in God also takes it to God. He gives Him the honor, this is how he speaks to God (verse 11). He has lost himself and sees only God. The right certainty comes with the right hymn: on God.

It is a hymn of hoop and expectation. David sings "I will proclaim thy name, for it is good, in the presence of the godly." (verse 11). David means to say that he will hopeful confess God's name. Yes, David already sees himself standing in the temple. Singing together, joy sounding through. This is the joy from the certainty of faith.

Faith, we say in the first point, confronts experience. Now we can say more: faith brings it's own experience. David had enough reason to be sad, as a refugee. Who would not be sad in that situation, but through faith he already sees himself singing in the temple. It makes him happy.

Faith closes the eyes and opens the ears. This does not mean that we have to go through life with closed eyes. But it means that we live with an open bible. Faith listens - to God. Where His voice is heard your conscience should not and the Satan should leave. Your unfaithfulness accuses you. But the voice of God speaks over the faithfulness of Christ for all of us. And God sees me as if I never have had any sin. As if I myself fulfilled all the obedience that Christ fulfilled for me.

Have you ever had any notion of what Christ brings for you? Do you see that through Him you are perfect for God? Do you hear the voice that says that you yourself are perfect? Do you also sometimes sing it out, when you get that notion?

Look upon Christ. Look more upon Christ and believe in him and you will see… yourself as God sees you… as His Son, His child. What a relief. Where this is experienced a hymn is sung:

"My God, I will always praise you,
because you fulfilled."


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