“He asked you for life, and you gave it to him - length of days, forever and ever.”
We’ve been thinking for the last few days about Psalm 21:1-7 and today we’ve come to verse 4. I imagine, without exception all of us want to live a long, happy and fulfilled life and at the end to die peacefully and pain free. Yet, it has to be said that however long this life may last most of us have even a little bit of apprehension about the process of dying.
Though sickness and death is part and parcel of life in a fallen world and it’s all fine in theory, when it becomes personal it’s a different matter. Death whilst it comes to all seems strangely un-natural and feels very much that life has been cut short, as if we’ve been robbed in some way and we feel that with almost every fibre of our being. The writer of Ecclesiastes explains it in this way... “He (God) has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” Eccl. 3:11
Set against that background, David’s request seems perfectly natural and more than that is understandable given that kings in the day might not be around too long given the battles they fought and the threats to their life and reign even from within their own families. Did David however ask for more than that or was it implied in his request. Some people see the second part of the verse – which tells how God abundantly answered the prayer request simply relating to the promise given to David that there would always be a descendent to rule on his throne. Really, does that seem an adequate explanation or does this point to the hope of eternal life?
Well cards on the table.... that’s how I see it and the theme comes up in other psalms of David; Ps 23:6 for example “and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” or Ps 121:8 “the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forever more.” David asked for life, and the Lord gave him length of days forever and ever. It sounds like he knew what that meant to me; everlasting life. The Lord gave David more than he asked for. It was by design not accident that the one who fulfilled the promise to David concerning his dynasty, the descendent who would always reign, Jesus, is the one who also gives life, “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.” John 10:10. Today if you have put your trust in Jesus your life forever is already underway.
Give thanks in Jesus name that the gift of God is eternal life. Ask for help to grasp that this gift begins now in this life and continues in eternity, and if you are troubled today ask for peace.