Advent 2021; The Savior in the Psalms: Psalm 16.

A Miktam of David.

1 “Preserve me, O God, for in you I take refuge. 2I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.” As for the saints in the land, they are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight. The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names on my lips. The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.           I bless the Lord who gives me counsel; in the night also my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure. 10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption. 11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16 (ESV)

Psalm 16 is also a Psalm of David. The psalm’s outline is as follows.  

I.   David’s Security (16:1–7)

A. David’s confidence (16:1–2, 5–7): David finds security in the Lord.

1.  The Lord protects him (16:1).

2.  The Lord provides for him (16:2, 5–7).

B.  David’s companions (16:3): David looks up to the godly of the land.

C.  David’s commitment (16:4): David vows never to offer sacrifices to idols.

II. David’s Son (16:8–11): These verses, although written by David, predict the future work of Jesus Christ.

A. Jesus’ reliance upon his Father (16:8).

B.  Jesus’ resurrection by his Father (16:9–10).

C.  Jesus’ reign with his Father (16:11).

Psalm 16:8-11 is quoted in two New Testament passages. Both passages are found in the Book of Acts.

First, Acts 2:24-31 says, 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. 25 For David says concerning him, “ ‘I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken; 26 therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; my flesh also will dwell in hope. 27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One see corruption. 28 You have made known to me the paths of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence.’ 29 “Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30 Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, 31 he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption.”

The Apostle Peter quoted Psalm 16 concerning Jesus Christ on the Day of Pentecost. David was speaking about his own human experience and suffering. However, Peter understood that David was ultimately speaking about Jesus.

The Apostle Paul also quoted from Psalm 16 as recorded by Luke in Acts 13:34-37. The text says, 34 And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way, “‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’ 35 Therefore he says also in another psalm, “‘You will not let your Holy One see corruption.’ 36 For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep and was laid with his fathers and saw corruption, 37 but he whom God raised up did not see corruption.”  

Dr. John MacArthur writes, “These words expressed the confidence of the lesser David, but were applied Messianically to the resurrection of the Greater David (the Lord Jesus Christ) both by Peter (Acts 2:25–28) and Paul (Acts 13:35).

Advent not only points to the birth of Christ, but also to the death, burial and ultimately the resurrection of Jesus. That is why He came to earth: to deliver His people from their sins and to impute his righteousness upon those who are recipients of God’s sovereign grace and God given faith (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Soli deo Gloria!

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