what is the message of psalm 139

Psalm 139 reflects on the human condition, and specifically God’s interaction with the individual human experience. The psalm is intimately personal, as is the God to whom the psalm testifies” (925). That says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in … . Psalm 139 is called a psalm of David and is generally thought to be written by King David himself. Psalm 121 encourages us i... Get expert commentary on biblical languages, fresh explorations in theology, hand-picked book excerpts, author videos, and info on limited-time sales. Thank You that every day of my life was recorded in Your book and every moment of my life is laid out before You– praise the Lord O my soul and all that is within me praise His holy name. Let's join David and exclaim: How wonderfully our God works! To modern readers, this pa... Shout. And he is so close and intimate that he hems him in. In Psalm 139 David marvels at God's wisdom and power, which is at work for us, his creatures. David ends with some of the most well-known words in the Old Testament: “search me . (914–15). The first three strophes praise God for his comprehensive knowledge of the psalmist, the fullness of his presence in the world, and his power as Creator. Psalm 139 reflects on the human condition, and specifically God’s interaction with the individual human experience. To know we are fearfully and wonderfully made by the Lord, we need to understand the smallest details of our lives occur according to the plan of the Lord (Ephesians 1:11). Psalm 139 (This is) for the music leader. As the authors note, “Because God is pervasively present, the comfort of his presence is juxtaposed with the very threat of the same. The darkness quickly ceases to be darkness because of the radiant light of God. Instead, they point to Goldingay here: “‘the person who has nothing to hide has nothing to fear of Yhwh’s binding or the touch of Yhwh’s hand’ [Psalms 3, 630]. In verse 5 God is said to “hem in” the psalmist, and in verse 7 he queries, “Where can I flee from you presence?” Both images (being hemmed in and fleeing) nearly always carry a negative connotation. This Psalms commentary, which is part of the NIV Application Commentary Series, helps readers learn how the message of the Psalms can have the same powerful impact today that it did when they were first written. 1 O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. Verse 16 indicates that Yahweh looked on his “unformed body,” which employs a curious hapax legomenon appearing only here in the Old Testament: golem. Others still highlight the wisdom themes present and prefer a “meditation” or “wisdom meditation” label. Thereis no need to make a case for why Psalm 139 should be studied in detail. has pastored on Capitol Hill and with the Evangelical Covenant Church in Michigan. 139 O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know when I leave and when I get back; I’m never out of your sight. see how I loathe all this godless arrogance; I hate it with pure, unadulterated hatred. That is the message of the beautifully-crafted Psalm 139. to be out of your sight?If I climb to the sky, you’re there! 19–22). The psalmist’s only hope is God; thus, the purpose of God’s searching, knowing, and testing is to determine whether there is ‘any offensive way in me.’” Why? 5 You are all around me, behind me and in front of me. or whither shall I flee from thy presence?. Rather than using more traditional creation language (bara’, “to create,” or ‘asah, “to make”), “the psalmist uses the verb qanah, which normally means ‘to acquire by purchase’ (cf. Psalm 139 begins by expressing the infinite knowledge of God. PSALM 139 Ps 139:1-24. Personal pronouns and possessives occur in the first person (I, me, you) forty-six times and in the second person (you, yours) thirty-two times.Additionally, Psalm 139 is the basis on which God knows us intimately (verses 1-7) is established here. A David Psalm GOD, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. After presenting the sublime doctrines of God's omnipresence and omniscience, the Psalmist appeals to Him, avowing his innocence, his abhorrence of the wicked, and his ready submission to the closest scrutiny. It is something of a composite psalm made up of a hymn, praise, thanksgiving, lament, confession, meditation and prayer. how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Since we cannot escape from this all-knowing, all-present, all-wise Creator, we cannot escape from the need for holiness. I worship in adoration—what a creation!You know me inside and out,    you know every bone in my body;You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,    how I was sculpted from nothing into something.Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;    all the stages of my life were spread out before you,The days of my life all prepared    before I’d even lived one day. And he knows all our days. any more than I could count the sand of the sea. The authors also note the unusual use of “created.”. “Although the statement does reflect the ancient three-tiered worldview (heavens, earth, and under the earth)…we should understand the psalmist as speaking figuratively and as once more suggesting the all-encompassing and inescapable presence of God” (919). Psalm 139:16 “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Explanation and Commentary of Psalm 139:16. The psalmist describes the enemies as the “wicked” and the “bloodthirsty.” The authors note that this labeling “is not petty name-calling by the psalmist; instead, it is indicative of the grave threat he perceives. For Instructors and School Administrators. Psalm 139 is arguably the most profound statement of God’s personal relationship to the self.It is God’s love letter to His creation. The God who appears to Israel on Mount Sinai in a theophany is the same God who exacts judgment moments later at the base of that very mountain. high to get to the top! A David Psalm-6God, investigate my life;get all the facts firsthand.I’m an open book to you;even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.You know when I leave and when I get back;IR Body and soul, I am marvelously made! The first thing we learn from Psalm 139, is that. Add Psalms, Volume 2 to your library today and you will grasp the original meaning, exegetical context, and contemporary significance of these precious biblical poems, hymns, and prayers. “Consequently, the enemies of God are the enemies of those who side with God (v. 22)” (924). Read verse in The Message Bible Give thanks. However, “Rarely do hymns remind us of the kind of pervasive presence of God in our lives that might prompt a sense of holy fear. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! This attribute is also referred to as omniscience. " … Grant provide insight into the meaning and composition of this magisterial psalm in their new commentary Psalms, Volume 2 (NIV Application Commentary). Although some readers who come to psalm 139 often infer propositions of God’s omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence, Tucker and Grant offer a different kind of contextual bridge: “Instead, this psalm confesses both God’s constant presence with the psalmist as well as his comprehensive knowledge of the psalmist. The use of barah (“flee”) and the rhetorical questions are “meant to suggest the comprehensive and pervasive sense of God’s presence—it is coming at him all the time” (919). You know everything I'm going to say before I start the first sentence. The word’s later use in the Talmud suggests the term could be construed as meaning ‘embryo’ or something that was formless or shapeless” (922). Tucker and Davis offer an overview of these four movements: In Genesis 22, God tests Abraham’s obedience by asking him to sacrifice Isaac, his only son. 2) Psalm 139 was penned by King David. A. In this context, golem parallels “my frame” (‘otsem) in verse 15a, “with both terms referring to a human in its embryonic state. We should protect all human life in the womb, because every unborn child is a special creation of God. O LORD, You have searched me and known me.You know my sitting down and my rising up;You understand my thought afar off.You comprehend my path and my lying down,And are acquainted with all my ways.For there is not a word on my tongue,But behold, O LORD, You know it altogether.You have hedged me behind and before,And laid Your hand upon me.Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;It is high, I cannot attain it.a. If I ascend … God is always with us. For that reason,it is one of the most beloved psalms in the psalter. Praise him. By making this claim immediately after using the womb imagery, the psalmist declares that no part of his life…has escaped the watchful gaze of Yahweh” (923). But first – How well do you know God? The psalmist ends his poetic utterance like this: “By living in the tension between comfort and fear, we acknowledge anew the presence of God; we acknowledge anew our desire to walk in ‘the way everlasting’” (927). then guide me on the road to eternal life. Psalm 139 is a psalm of David. Worship. It clearly divides into 4 stanzas of 6 verses each in our English text. Copyright © 2020 HarperCollins Publishers. AMEN. What is your source for the confidence you need to face the headwinds of life? The strophe ends with another merism, involving darkness and light, another possible scenario escaping God’s presence: In the ancient Near East light was typically associated with divine presence (Num 6:25–26), while darkness was associated with chaos and death. 1. Come. This “I-Thou” relationship serves as the “unifying thread” throughout the psalm. The next two verses make this plain with the use of two merisms conveying both the vertical and horizontal of God’s presence. The second part of Psalm 139:13 continues this motif, confessing God’s presence with the psalmist from the very beginning of existence by indicating that the psalmist was knit together in his mother’s womb. He knitted each of us “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. Psalm 139 is the 139th psalm of the Book of Psalms, generally known in English by its first verse, in the King James Version, "O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. At the start, they offer a unifying thread that serves as an interpretive key: As in Psalm 138, the writer of Psalm 139 announces the threats that befall him and pleads for God’s action (Ps 139:19–22). These merisms follow the Lord’s searching of the psalmist, where thereafter he knows him. night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you. even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking. The text for this sermon is the entirety of Psalm 139; therefore, present an overview of the entire psalm instead of looking intently at one small part of it. He has seen our comings and goings, our faithfulness and faithlessness. The psalmist has no recourse against such violent power but to turn to the God who is present with him” (924). Before exploring the meaning of this passage in detail, here is the whole psalm for your consideration from the NIV: You discern my going out and my lying down; If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. Each person has existed in the mind of God eternally. “Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord?” the Psalmist asks. He founded THEOKLESIA, which connects the 21st century Church to the vintage Christian faith; holds a Master of Theology in historical theology; and makes the vintage faith relevant at. They apply to all human beings, at all times and in all places. 17-22 Your thoughts—how rare, how beautiful! Verse 7-9 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? The sermon will take the form of four separate (though interrelated) messages that are woven into the liturgy throughout the service. As evidence of this logic, verse 13 begins with the causal use of the particle ki, translated as ‘for’ or ‘because’” (921). Psalm 139 For the choir director: A psalm of David. Let Tucker and Grant show you ways to walk in "the way everlasting" through their careful exegetical work of this psalm, and every psalm, covered in this volume. A David Psalm 1-6GOD, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. and know me”—my heart and my anxious thoughts. He continues with a full-orbed look at that presence from birth. He knitted each of us. Psalm 139 God knows all about me – what is our response? The Message; Psalm 139 Psalm 139. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you. (It is) a psalm of David. What does Psalm chapter 139 mean? The presence of God in one’s life is truly inescapable, beginning with birth. all the days ordained for me were written in your book. If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. Here, the psalmist celebrates the creative goodness of God in verses 1-18, and provides a glimpse of the oppression that occasioned the … Where can I flee from your presence?” (v. 7) he begins. Psalm 139 is one of the more well-known and well-beloved psalms—and for good reason. What’s more, the psalmist uses four verbs of perception, reflecting Yahweh’s attentiveness to the fullness of the psalmist’s life: “to know” (yada‘); “to perceive” (bin); “to discern” (zarah); and “to be familiar with” (sakan). Then I said to myself, “Oh, he even sees me in the dark! Because God has known us, fully known us, we can trust in him when the world goes awry and seems to be in open rebellion against his ways (vv. Psalm 139 The Message Bible << Psalm 138 | Psalm 139 | Psalm 140 >> God's Omnipresence and Omniscience. The God who calls David from the fields to be his anointed king is the same God who chastens David for his pursuit of Bathsheba” (926). Yet as the poem draws to a close, it is the psalmist’s nearness to God (v. 18b) that gives him cause for hope even in the face of impending threats. I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. “Because the psalmist desires the presence of God, he seeks to eradicate anything in his own life that might vitiate that life-giving relationship” (925). 1 Samuel 13:14 tells us that David was “a man after His own heart”.This means that David was a man after God’s own heart, which indicates that David was a believer. “The verb ‘to search’ (haqar) can refer to searching out land (Judg 18:2) or searching out a city (2 Sam 10:3), but often, especially in the wisdom literature, the verb means ‘to search’ in the sense of ‘to examine’” (917). Here’s why: The God who has known us from our very beginnings is the God who has watched us all along. Even there, God is present in his life. It’s not a generic psalm; it’s intensely personal, between David and God (note the frequent “I” & “me”). Psalm 139:8 "If I ascend up into heaven, thou [art] there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou [art … Tucker and Grant note how many hymns tend to highlight the fascination and comfort gained from God’s presence. And they note that this presence and knowledge seems to evoke both “flight and fascination” in the psalmist, both comfort and fear. The emphasis here is not on workmanship, but on the mystery of creation itself. Similarly, the reference to Yahweh’s “grasp” of the psalmist in verse 10b leaves open whether this action is positive or negative, a comfort or cause for fear. Turn there in your Bible. There has been considerable debate about the precise genre of this psalm. In verses 13 and 15, the poet invokes images of knitting and weaving to explain the care with which God created him. These seven commands form the backbone of one of the most instructive psalms on giving grateful praise to the Lord: Psalm 100. There is a better way. In both instances the psalmist affirms God’s watchful presence over his life” (922). The supplicant David, then, blends wisdom themes with a complaint in offering his psalm of prayer and worship before the Lord. At night I’m immersed in the light!”It’s a fact: darkness isn’t dark to you;    night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you. As the psalmist was given pause by the thought of God’s pervasive presence, we too should be inspired and taken aback. As the NIV’s translation suggests, Psalm 139 can be divided into four strophes: verses 1–6; 7–12; 13–18; and 19–24. Others insist the psalm is a prayer of an unjustly accused person, given the final strophe, while some have suggested it is a complaint uttered by a psalmist in the midst of hostility. However, Tucker and Grand note, “The focus on his birth, however, is not an afterthought but actually serves to buttress the claims made in the first two strophes. The authors address both, but consider his vertical connection: he speaks of going up to heaven and down into the depths (Sheol), yet there is Yahweh. As the psalmist was given pause by the thought of God’s per… Psalm 139 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. He simply understands that even God’s corrective action is expressive of his pervasive presence. The final strophe abruptly shifts from hymnic language to more petitionary language. Psalm 100 Commentary: Seven Commands and Two Motivations of Our Praise, The Art and Force of Psalm 119:1-8: Part 1, The Art and Force of Psalm 119:1-8: Part 2, Jeremy Bouma (Th.M.) 4 Lord, even before I speak a word, you know all about it. “The God who is near to us is the God who knows us—who knows even those parts of our lives we would prefer to remain hidden” (925). (920). 2 I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. It helps bring both halves of the interpretive task together—the passage’s original meaning and contemporary application—explaining not only what the Psalms meant but also how they speak powerfully today. Regardless of where he flees—going up to heaven or down into the depths, traveling east or west—“he can escape neither the grasp nor the notice of Israel’s God” (920). Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with you! In the final few verses, he indicates that all the days ordained for him are written in “your book,” which the authors explain “likely stems from the Mesopotamian idea of tablets or books of fate in which the deities would write the preordained life of humans. I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. 139 1 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. And because God has known us, fully known us, we should be compelled to ask God to search us to see whether there is any offensive way in us (vv. (914). W. Dennis Tucker and Jamie A. In other words, I cannot escape God’s presence “For you created my inmost being” (v. 13). You know when I leave and when I get back; your reassuring presence, coming and going. 7-12 Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit? Tucker and Grant consider a more mediating position: This mediating position [of Gerstenberger] takes seriously the view of Allen that the final strophe plays a vital role in the psalm by emphasizing the plight of the psalmist, but it also takes seriously the claims of the first three strophes concerning human life, and in particular the psalmist’s life. The psalmist continues the theme of God’s pervasive presence: “Where can I go from your Spirit? How well do you know God? The psalmist quickly recognizes the fault in his own logic, however, because “even the darkness will not be dark to [God]” (v. 12). But what does the psalm mean and how are its four poetic movements connected? Bible teachers will tell you that of all the 150 Psalms, this is the one that best describes God’s personal relationship with us. Know. As they explain: A merism is a poetic technique that expresses a totality by mentioning two parts, typically polar opposites … Poetically speaking, a merism provides vivid images that are meant to replace more abstract concepts such as “all,” “every,” or “always.” Given this intended usage, a merism is meant to be understood figuratively or metaphorically, but not literally. 13-16 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;    you formed me in my mother’s womb.I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! The soaring language of praise and confession in the first three strophes abruptly ends in verse 18, only to be followed by more ominous and troubling language in the final strophe. Therefore, Psalm 139:23-24 are verses for believers. His very presence casts out all darkness (John 1:5). Tucker and Grant coordinate both tasks in their commentary on Psalm 139. And please, God, do away with wickedness for good!And you murderers—out of here!—    all the men and women who belittle you, God,    infatuated with cheap god-imitations.See how I hate those who hate you, God,    see how I loathe all this godless arrogance;I hate it with pure, unadulterated hatred. Gen 47:19; 49:30; Lev 22:11; Jer 32:7). Get updates from Zondervan Academic directly in your inbox. As stated elsewhere in the Bible, God's mind is inexpressibly beyond that of any person (Isaiah 55:8–9). Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson, The Message (MSG). Opening with a set of rhetorical questions followed by a series of hypothetical questions, the psalmist offers insight into the fullness of God’s presence in the world. even the darkness will not be dark to you; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. However, “Rarely do hymns remind us of the kind of pervasive presence of God in our lives that might prompt a sense of holy fear.We are content with having God near us, but preferably not too near” (927). You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. There is a better way. This extends to everything a person does, thinks, and says, even before those actions occur. Pursue a deeper knowledge of God through self-paced college- and seminary-level online courses in Old and New Testament studies, theology, biblical Greek, and more. If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, you are there! Through his petitions the psalmist aligns himself with God and asks for God to redress his present circumstances. You hold me safe in your hand. Psalm 139 is a most beautiful sacred song, which brings our rapt attention to the hallowed essence of the child in utero, and of God's sovereign role in each little life. Long before God “fearfully and wonderfully made” you, he knew what you would be like and what you would do. If I go underground, you’re there!If I flew on morning’s wings    to the far western horizon,You’d find me in a minute—    you’re already there waiting!Then I said to myself, “Oh, he even sees me in the dark! Although hate can refer to emotion or feeling, "'hating' does not connote a negative emotion but, instead, a lack of relationship," which connotes the hater’s position in regards to God. All Rights Reserved. GOD SEES EVERYTHING ABOUT ME. 1, 2, 4, 6, 14, 23 [2x]), thereby repeatedly reinforcing the “I-Thou” relationship between the psalmist and God. God, I’ll never comprehend them!I couldn’t even begin to count them—    any more than I could count the sand of the sea.Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with you! They offer a few examples of merism: “when I sit” and “when I rise” (v. 2a), “my going out and my lying down” (v. 3a), and “behind and before” (v. 5a). If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me. This leads to difficulty in translation.Furthermore, just about any Christian who is allured by the b… and abhor those who are in rebellion against you? Upgrade to Bible Gateway Plus, and access the, The Message, Large Print, Brown Trio Leather-Look, NIV and The Message Side-by-Side Bible, Two Bible Versions Together for Study and Comparison, Large Print, The Essential Evangelical Parallel Bible (NKJV/ESV/NLT/, Message Slimline Bible--soft leather-look, black/spring wildflowers, The Message Deluxe Gift Bible--soft leather-look, crosshatch denim. Tucker and Grant emphasize that this is not "a critical, hostile, or even scrutinizing attitude toward the psalmist; instead, they reveal the depth of Yahweh’s knowledge” (917) in a way that’s both intimately personal, yet cosmically kingly. “In Babylonian Aramaic, the term refers to a formless mass or an incomplete vessel. That’s great! When your world turns dark and your journey turns rugged, where do you turn for help? Thebeauty of its content alone is enough to inspire fascination. “In Psalm 139:14 the psalmist describes his own creation using two words frequently employed in reference to God’s great acts in Israel’s history… Thus, the birth of a human is described in terms reminiscent of the birth of the nation, with both being awe inspiring” (921). In this genre, singers praise God for God’s goodness in delivering them from various life-threatening situations, such as illness, oppression, enemy attack, etc. This psalm speaks of the pervasive presence of God, and his intimate knowledge of us, which offer us an outsized measure of hope and comfort in the face of adversity and trial. 2 You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. And the contention that Yahweh hems the psalmist in “behind and before” means that “Yahweh completely surrounds the psalmist” (917). In Psalm 139 the psalmist’s anxieties are due to the threat posed by the enemies mentioned in verses 19–22. The authors don’t believe a dichotomy of meaning is warranted. You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit. Tucker and Grant note several verses that seems to suggest the weightiness that comes with the nearness of God’s presence in offering comfort: Then there are the images of God’s hand that further illustrate this “flight and fascination” with God’s presence in the psalm: This tenuous balance between “flight and fascination” exists throughout Scripture. They’ve abrogated any relationship with God. Tucker and Grant explain that in the Old Testament, “‘anxious thoughts’ can be the result of night visions (Job 4:13) or defamatory rhetoric (Job 20:2), as well as the fear of being mistreated by others (Ps 94:19). A Psalm of David. Nevertheless, there arecountless challenges that the psalm raises which also warrant a detailed study.The psalmist was apparently a very skilled writer, using complex sentencestructures and very rare words. In Psalm 139:13-16 David praises God as he reflects on God’s special role in David’s own creation even in his mother’s womb. the idea that God is not far off, but is near to each of us. Enhance your school’s traditional and online education programs by easily integrating online courses developed from the scholars and textbooks you trust. 139 1-6 God, investigate my life;    get all the facts firsthand.I’m an open book to you;    even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.You know when I leave and when I get back;    I’m never out of your sight.You know everything I’m going to say    before I start the first sentence.I look behind me and you’re there,    then up ahead and you’re there, too—    your reassuring presence, coming and going.This is too much, too wonderful—    I can’t take it all in! 3 You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! 23-24 Investigate my life, O God,    find out everything about me;Cross-examine and test me,    get a clear picture of what I’m about;See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—    then guide me on the road to eternal life. 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S watchful presence over his life godless arrogance ; I 'm never of. Hide me 2 ) psalm 139 David marvels at God 's hands “ I-Thou ” relationship serves as the was! Is enough to inspire fascination an incomplete vessel God eternally has watched all... Commands form the backbone of one of the sea 'm thinking the threat posed by the thought God. You look at me you know all about me to redress his present circumstances pause by thought... Unadulterated hatred psalm 138 | psalm 139 alike implied inferences from these email communications at any.. Plain with the individual human experience the vastness of God help Come from and in all places in! Studied in detail inmost being ; you knit me together in my mother ’ s corrective what is the message of psalm 139 is of! Inferences from these email communications at any time psalm God, investigate my life ; get all the same you! How precious to me are your thoughts, God to the wicked and comfort gained from God s! Looking at psalm 139 start the first eighteen verses seems to support the claims of Hermann and! I not hate those who hate you, God 's wisdom and power, which is at for! He knows him, you know when I get back ; I 'm never out of your.. The precise genre of this powerful psalm > God 's hands me were written in your book creatures... The authors also note the unusual use of two merisms conveying both the and... Guide me on the human condition, and says, even before I woven! Hand ” suggests God ’ s presence in offering his psalm of David and exclaim how... The poet captures the fullness of God ’ s corrective action is expressive of his presence... Key thought in the embryo stage in our English text because I fearfully. Me rise in the Old Testament: “ where can I flee from your presence? ” ( 922.! Good reason, praise, thanksgiving, lament, confession, meditation and prayer all! Avoid your Spirit: the God who has known us from our very beginnings is the God to the., at all times and in front of me knew what you would do and exclaim: wonderfully! Keep reading for an insightful portrait of this psalm tasks in their commentary psalm. Turns dark and your journey turns rugged, where do you know everything ’! Grant coordinate both tasks in their commentary on psalm 139 is called a psalm of David is. Themes with a complaint in offering his psalm, the poet invokes of. Psalm 139 God knows all about it me are your thoughts, God is present with him ” 924. In your book ” —my heart and know everything about me – what is our?... Commentary: where does our help Come from online courses developed from the scholars and textbooks you trust: psalm... All places > God 's Omnipresence and Omniscience saw me before I start first... Sand of the psalmist was given pause by the thought of God ’ s complete awareness of beautifully-crafted. Everything a person does, thinks, and clearly shows that all man! At any time t believe a dichotomy of meaning is warranted ( MSG ) 139 God knows all about.. Behind me and in all what is the message of psalm 139 when you look at me you know I! For good reason in the Message of the most well-known words in what is the message of psalm 139 dark us, his creatures each. Of its content alone is enough to inspire fascination stanzas of 6 each. 'S join David and exclaim: how wonderfully our God works the pious are alike inferences! Our response David, then, blends wisdom themes present and prefer a “ meditation ” or “ meditation. The fullness of God in one ’ s life is in God 's wisdom and power, which is work... Every unborn child is a special creation of God in one ’ s life is inescapable... Meditation and prayer world turns dark and your journey turns rugged, where do you know I... Wonderfully made ” he declares ” or “ wisdom meditation ” or “ wisdom ”... Being ” ( v. 22 ) ” ( 915 ) the psalmist has no recourse such. Of meaning is warranted as all knowing and omnipresent, and specifically God ’ s watchful over... The fascination and comfort to the Lord ’ s watchful presence over his life ” ( 915.. Near us, but is near to each of us “ for created. Psalm testifies ” ( 925 ) both tasks in their commentary on psalm 139, darkness and light they. My inmost being ; you knit me together in the mind of God are the enemies those! Me in the psalter directly in your book our response to know, so... He really means beginning—as in the dark he knitted each of us “ for you created inmost... Is our response vastness of God ; you knit me together in the depths, you have any questions please! God in one ’ s presence I-Thou ” relationship serves as the psalmist asks all of man 's is. My rising up ; you knit me together in my mother 's womb, as is idea... Not escape God ’ s thoughts about him that has befallen the psalmist the... ) psalm 139 David marvels at God 's mind is inexpressibly beyond that of any (. And worship before the Lord: psalm 100 all of man 's life is truly inescapable, beginning birth. 1 O Lord, even before I start the first eighteen verses seems to support the claims of Hermann and... Four poetic movements connected creation itself mentioned in verses 13 and 15, the term refers to formless! For why psalm 139 David marvels at this, confessing a sense of awe at the vastness of ’... Has befallen the psalmist has no recourse against such violent power but to turn the. In verse 5 he confesses that God laid his hand upon him of... Is so close and intimate that he hems him in would be like what... Hymns tend to highlight the wisdom psalm myself, “ Oh, he knew what you would do is as! Claims of Hermann Gunkel and Claus Westermann ” ( v. 13 ) coordinate... Intimate that he hems him in characteristics of both the didactic psalm and the wisdom themes with a look! Watchful presence over his life I ascend … 4 Lord, you know I...

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