To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.
1 How long, O LORD? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me?
2 How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart daily? How long will my enemy be exalted over me?
3 Consider and hear me, O LORD my God; enlighten my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death;
4 Lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed against him”; lest those who trouble me rejoice when I am moved.
5 But I have trusted in Your mercy; my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.
6 I will sing to the LORD, because He has dealt bountifully with me.
The translation I have been using to post theses Psalms is the New King James. Mostly because when it comes to reading the Psalms the New King James is the one that ,in my opinion, strikes the best balance of sounding appropriately royal while at the same time not having too many archaic word so as to impair understanding, having said that, I really saw something intriguing when I read the NIV version in verse 2. Instead of “take counsel in my soul” it says “wrestle with my thoughts”. This totally transforms the entire rest of the psalm. The enemy he is striving against is not outside his gates, but inside his head. Now we have an Old Testament echo of Romans 7 where Paul expresses his frustration with how he can never seem to fully put his sinful nature behind him.
David is begging “enlighten my eyes” show me a way out of these deadly and self-destructive thought patterns. No wonder David is known for praising God so enthusiastically. He was keenly aware of the bountiful nature of God’s mercy towards his personal failures.