Chapter 11: The Lord Tests the Righteous
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.
This Psalm records well-intentioned, but faithless advice of David’s friends when he was a fugitive from King Saul. David lifts his eyes to the Lord to find faith in a time of testing. He knew the safest place to stand was with trust in God.
In the years before he took the throne of Israel, David lived the life of a fugitive. He was constantly hunted by King Saul, and lived in constant danger. In such a time, his friends advised him, “…Flee as a bird to your mountain…” (Psalms 11:1), I think that his friends meant well, but they were nevertheless wrong.
David responds to them and asks; “…how say ye… Flee as a bird to your mountain? For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, [and] …make ready their arrow…” (Psalms 11:2)
David goes on to say that; “… the Lord’s throne in in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” (Psalms 11:4)
Now this doesn’t make much sense until we read the Inspired Version of the King James Version (as re-translated by Joseph Smith)
“…sitting upon God’s throne in heaven, his eyes shall pierce the wicked.” (Psalms 11:4, Joseph Smith Translation of the King James Bible)
David would not listen to the advice of his friends and flee, because if he put his trust in the Lord he would be ok.
Chapter 12: Flattering Lips and Tongues
To the chief Musician upon Sheminith, A Psalm of David.
“Sheminith- Is a musical term, a similar direction is found in the title of Psalms 6:1 and in 1 Chronicles 15:21. Although we don’t know for sure, it seems that Sheminith denotes a certain air known as the eighth, or a certain key in which the psalm was to be sung.”
“HELP, Lord; for the godly man ceaseth… they speak vanity… with flattering lips and with a double heart…the tongue that speakth proud things.” (Psalms 12:1-3)
David opens this Psalm with a plea of HELP from the Lord. David explains that the “godly” or “good” man cease to exist. However, David says that the “…words of the Lord are pure… O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.” (Psalms 12:6-7)
David knew that the wicked existed, they had double hearts and double minds. They manifested good, but in reality worked in wickedness. Even though the wicked spoke with vanity and flattering lips, their words would not last forever. However, the words of the Lord are pure and shall endure forever.
Chapter 13: Rejoice in Salvation
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.
“Who is the chief Musician? – Some believe that it is the Lord God Himself, others believe he was a leader of a choir or choirs in the time of David.”
“How long wilt thou forget me, O Lord? …how long wilt thou hid thy face from me?” (Psalms 13:1)
David, like many others felt that God was abandoning him. How often has one of God’s children knelt down in tears, begging God to answer their prayers… only to feel like they are talking to themselves? It happens. Often times it happens for our own good, so that we can gain/learn something on our own. This is why we live, to learn and grow… so that when we die and return to our celestial home we can have the gained knowledge to live in the presence of our Heavenly Father.
David knew deep down that God was there and that he still trusted Him to answer; “…I have trusted thy mercy; my heart shall rejoice in thy salvation.” (Psalms 13:5). I strongly believe that David is talking about the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. Through Jesus Christ we can be saved and have Eternal Salvation.
Chapter 14: The Fool Says: There is NO God!
To the Chief Musician, A Psalm of David.
“The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God…” (Psalms 14:1)
David makes a very clear point, those who say that there is NO God, are FOOLS! He goes on to say that those same people, who say there is no God; “…are corrupt, [and] they have done abominable works…” (Psalm 14:1)
Essentially we learn that those who believe God does not exist have become corrupt and have done evil works. David then goes on to say that “The Lord looked down from heaven…to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.” (Psalms 14:2)
The Lord said that all together His children had become corrupt, filthy and workers of iniquity with no knowledge. (see verses 3 & 4). The Lord sought to restore his gospel (like He does, every time the generation becomes filthy). When the day of Restoration comes; “…Jacob shall rejoice, and Israel shall be glad” (Psalms 14:7)