Most of the commentaries I have read on Psalm 21 stated the victories it was praising God for were those prayed for by David in Psalm 20. One of the great things about keeping a prayer journal is having the ability to go back and rejoice when God answers prayers! Psalm 20 is the prayer before the victory and Psalm 21 is the victory after the prayer! We should be people of prayer (Psalm 20), but also people of praise (Psalm 21). Although David was a mighty warrior and king, he did not take credit for his victories in battle. David rejoiced in the Lord’s strength and attributed all the victory to Him (v. 1). In verses 1-7, David described the successes God granted him through praise and worship. David listed several areas God fulfilled through prayer. In verse 2, he said God gave him “his heart’s desire”, a statement he would again make in Psalm 37:4. God met the “request of his lips”, which came from his heart. What we ask from God with our mouth must match what is deep in our soul. And all of that must be within the will and Word of the Lord.
David said God also granted him “rich blessings” (v. 3). While this may have included actual gold mentioned in the latter half of the verse, material possessions was not David’s goal. The victory was like being crowned king all over again, which gave David assurance God was with and for him. God gave him “length of days” (v. 4) and “unending blessings” (v. 6). This referred to personal benefits, but also the fulfillment of God’s covenant through Christ. Splendor and majesty in verse 5 spoke of more than an earthly king could personally possess. David’s praise of God for victory was a reflection of the splendor and majesty of God. God’s “unfailing love” increased David’s trust in the Lord.
Not only did David praise the Lord for answering his prayer and giving him recent victories, he praised Him for the victories to come. David’s enemies were not all gone at this point. David was sure God would grant him future victories over all of his enemies. His right hand (v. 8) is a symbol of power and favor. God’s power would seize David’s foes (v. 7), burn them up (v. 8), swallow them in wrath and consume them in fire (v. 9), and destroy from the earth (v. 10). David was successful in more battles (defending Israel from her enemies) and Israel flourished with him as their king. This was because David put his trust in the Lord. Enemies would plot against David (v. 11), but to no avail. They would not only face David’s armies, but the Lord’s drawn bow as well (v. 12). David ended the Psalm with more praise, “Be exalted in your strength, Lord. We will sing and praise your might” (v. 13). David praised the Lord for what He had done and what He would do! That’s faith in action. That’s trust in motion. That’s hope lived out! God’s character should force fear from our future and put praise in our present!
1. What victories has the Lord provided?
2. What are you hoping He will do?
3. What will be the condition in which you wait on the Lord as He does His will?
Lord, help me to trust you. Help me to remember all you have done for me and let that be expressed in praise! I have faith you hear my current prayers and will answer them the way that best gives You glory. That give me great comfort and I am at ease with however You answer. Thank you for being the one who gives me strength and victory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.