A Psalm. A Song at the dedication of the temple. Of David.
This Psalm's title bears no apparent connection with the Psalmist's thanksgiving for recovery from sickness.
Keeping and Jettisoning
Psalm 30 Exaltabo te, Domine
1 I will exalt you, O Lord, because you have lifted me up *
and have not let my enemies triumph over me.
2 O Lord my God, I cried out to you, *
and you restored me to health.
3 You brought me up, O Lord, from the dead; *
you restored my life as I was going down to the grave.
4 Sing to the Lord, you servants of his; *
give thanks for the remembrance of his holiness.
5 For his wrath endures but the twinkling of an eye, *
his favor for a lifetime.
6 Weeping may spend the night, *
but joy comes in the morning.
7 While I felt secure, I said, "I shall never be disturbed. *
You, Lord, with your favor, made me as strong as the mountains."
8 Then you hid your face, *
and I was filled with fear.
9 I cried to you, O Lord; *
I pleaded with the Lord, saying,
10 "What profit is there in my blood, if I go down to the Pit? *
will the dust praise you or declare your faithfulness?
11 Hear, O Lord, and have mercy upon me; *
O Lord, be my helper."
12 You have turned my wailing into dancing; *
you have put off my sack-cloth and clothed me with joy.
13 Therefore My heart sings to you without ceasing; *
O Lord my God, I will give you thanks for ever.
I have jettisoned the second half of the first verse.
Although the Psalmist's enemies might well have rejoiced over his death, it's harder to understand how his death through illness rather than warfare would constitute their triumph.
And this half-verse contains the only reference to "enemies" in the Psalm.
I have jettisoned verse 5 because it reflects a particular Old Testament view that sickness is God's punishment for sin.
In verses 7-10 the Psalmist accuses the Lord of "hiding your face," and the Lord revealed in Jesus Christ never hides his face.
Also, the Psalmist believes that the Lord is motivated by a desire for profit and praise, rather than by God's own holiness (verse 4) and mercy (verse 11)— as later revealed in Jesus:
"As Jesus and his disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. There were two blind men sitting by the roadside. When they heard that Jesus was passing by, they shouted, "Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!" The crowd sternly ordered them to be quiet; but they shouted even more loudly, "Have mercy on us, Lord, Son of David!" Jesus stood still and called them, saying, "What do you want me to do for you?" They said to him, "Lord, let our eyes be opened." Moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes. Immediately they regained their sight and followed him" (Matthew 20:29-34).
Verse 12 is also jettisoned because wearing sack cloth is usually a sign of penitence, which, as in verse 5, recalls the false idea that sickness is a punishment for sin.
Next: what would you keep and what would you jettison?
Psalm 31 In te, Domine, speravi
1 In you, O Lord, have I taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; *
deliver me in your righteousness.
2 Incline your ear to me; *
make haste to deliver me.
3 Be my strong rock, a castle to keep me safe, for you are my crag and my stronghold; *
for the sake of your Name, lead me and guide me.
4 Take me out of the net that they have secretly set for me, *
for you are my tower of strength.
5 Into your hands I commend my spirit, *
for you have redeemed me, O Lord, O God of truth.
6 I hate those who cling to worthless idols, *
and I put my trust in the Lord.
7 I will rejoice and be glad because of your mercy; *
for you have seen my affliction; you know my distress.
8 You have not shut me up in the power of the enemy; *
you have set my feet in an open place.
9 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble; *
my eye is consumed with sorrow, and also my throat and my belly.
10 For my life is wasted with grief, and my years with sighing; *
my strength fails me because of affliction, and my bones are consumed.
11 I have become a reproach to all my enemies and even to my neighbors, a dismay to those of my acquaintance; *
when they see me in the street they avoid me.
12 I am forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; *
I am as useless as a broken pot.
13 For I have heard the whispering of the crowd; fear is all around; *
they put their heads together against me; they plot to take my life.
14 But as for me, I have trusted in you, O Lord. *
I have said, "You are my God.
15 My times are in your hand; *
rescue me from the hand of my enemies, and from those who persecute me.
16 Make your face to shine upon your servant, *
and in your loving-kindness save me."
17 Lord, let me not be ashamed for having called upon you; *
rather, let the wicked be put to shame; let them be silent in the grave.
18 Let the lying lips be silenced which speak against the righteous, *
haughtily, disdainfully, and with contempt.
19 How great is your goodness, O Lord! which you have laid up for those who fear you; *
which you have done in the sight of all for those who put their trust in you.
20 You hide them in the covert of your presence from those who slander them; *
you keep them in your shelter from the strife of tongues.
21 Blessed be the Lord! *
for he has shown me the wonders of his love in a besieged city.
22 Yet I said in my alarm, "I have been cut off from the sight of your eyes." *
Nevertheless, you heard the sound of my entreaty when I cried out to you.
23 Love the Lord, all you who worship him; *
the Lord protects the faithful, but repays to the full those who act haughtily.
24 Be strong and let your heart take courage, *
all you who wait for the Lord.