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Psalm 16

Do you trust the Lord?  Trust, or distrust, is displayed in our actions and words.  There are times in any relationship where trust is given freely or withheld begrudgingly.  We either trust or we don’t the Lord and what we speak and show are proof of that.  Psalm 16 is a very personal one where David used the pronouns “I”, “my”, and “me” 28 times (NIV) to convey his intimate relationship with the Lord.  This is a Psalm of trust based upon the experience David had with His God.  David begins with a faith statement in verses 1-2, “In You I take refuge.  You are my Lord.  Apart from You I have no good thing.”  He knew the Lord was not only his protector and his provider, but most importantly his Lord.  David knew to trust the Lord because of His character, not just His charity.  To him, God was more than someone he ran to when he was in trouble.  God was One to be trusted at all times.  Therefore, David would not, “pour out libations of blood to such gods or take up their names on his lips” (v. 4).  It’s amazing how seek the Lord only when He provides how and when they want but turn away from Him when they perceive God’s timing or provision unacceptable.  David knew, “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).  Trust implies if God did it before, He will do it again.  As David reflected on God’s past provision (vv. 3-6), he was confident his present (v. 8) and future (vv. 9-11) would be secure. 

Throughout this Psalm, David offered prayer and praise to God.  Shouldn’t that be the actions and words of all those who trust the Lord?  David said the Lord was his refuge (v. 1), Lord (v. 2), portion and security (v. 5), inheritance (v. 6), counselor (v. 7), stability (v. 8), rest (v. 9), eternal savior (v. 10), and life and joy (v. 11).  This sounds like a man of faith who trusted the Lord!  Interestingly, unlike some other Psalms, this Psalm does not record the voice of God or those of David’s enemies.  This is a simple individual declaration of trust based on God’s character that results in David’s praise.  There are other individual or personal Psalms (4, 23, 27, 73) and even community Psalms (90, 123-126).  It is right to praise the Lord in community where everyone can see (church, small group, Sunday school, etc.), but we must also praise Him while we are by ourselves based on His character, when it seems He is silent, and when our crisis or accusers are absent.  True trust is displayed when we are alone with God!  How can we do this?  How can we fully trust the Lord?  Not only did David tell us to trust the Lord, Who alone can help us see Heaven (vv. 8-11), but both Paul and Peter quoted Psalm 16 in defending the resurrection of Jesus (Acts 2:25-28; 13:35).  It is the resurrection of Jesus that is our base for trust in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:11-17)!  Because Jesus lives, we have even more confidence in the character of God (1 Peter 1:13)!  Have you trusted in Christ and do you expect to be with Him one day in Heaven?  If not, will you trust Him today for salvation?  Put your trust in God, He will never disappoint!  “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord” (Jeremiah 17:7).


  1. Have you placed your trust in Christ for salvation?
  2. If not, why?


Lord, help me to trust You.  I trust You to be my Savior and Lord.  Thank You for resurrecting from the dead and forgiving me from my sin. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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Stephen and his wife Haley have called Arkansas home all of their lives. Stephen has served in several ministry roles over the last 25 years and as a lead pastor for the last 8 years. Stephen attended Williams Baptist College and earned a BA in Biblical Studies from Ouachita Baptist University, an MA, MDiv, and DMin in Christian Leadership and Pastoral Ministries from Liberty University. When not pastoring, Stephen enjoys running, cycling, reading, writing, camping, fishing, and spending time with his family.

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