Read Psalm 62
For the director of music. For Jeduthun. A psalm of David.
1 Truly my soul finds rest in God;
my salvation comes from him.
2 Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.
3 How long will you assault me?
Would all of you throw me down—
this leaning wall, this tottering fence?
4 Surely they intend to topple me
from my lofty place;
they take delight in lies.
With their mouths they bless,
but in their hearts they curse.
5 Yes, my soul, find rest in God;
my hope comes from him.
6 Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.
7 My salvation and my honor depend on God;
he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
8 Trust in him at all times, you people;
pour out your hearts to him,
for God is our refuge.
9 Surely the lowborn are but a breath,
the highborn are but a lie.
If weighed on a balance, they are nothing;
together they are only a breath.
10 Do not trust in extortion
or put vain hope in stolen goods;
though your riches increase,
do not set your heart on them.
11 One thing God has spoken,
two things I have heard:
“Power belongs to you, God,
12 and with you, Lord, is unfailing love”;
and, “You reward everyone
according to what they have done.”
Many of the psalms we have read begin with the psalmist (in this case, David) describing a present need or plea. Psalm 62, however, is different in that it is written as an expression of confidence. The most literal translation of the opening line of this psalm is “My soul finds rest in God alone.” When we hear the word “rest”, we often go straight to a physical rest. What David is describing here is a bit more complex than that. It’s a rest that comes from confidence in who God is and what He will do. When our souls have confidence in God, it is easy for us to exhale.
At the beginning of this psalm, David makes some declarative statements about God’s character and God’s nature. He calls God his fortress and his salvation (v. 2). Just a few verses later he describes God as his refuge (v. 7-8). Refuge isn’t a word that we use a lot, but rarely do we seek out refuge when things are going well. When we have this feeling that life is in turmoil and we can’t tell which way is up or down, we look all around us to find ways to either numb the pain, provide a false sense of stability, or help us forget that we feel this way to begin with. Instead, here David is giving us this template for what it means to call these things out for what they are, while also bringing them before God and saying, “Here’s what I’m feeling, and in spite of all of these things beyond my control, you are my refuge.”
In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus invites all who are weary and burdened to take His yoke and learn from Him, and, He says, “You will find rest for your souls.” We may not have a clear understanding of what a yoke is, but the people Jesus was talking to definitely would have understood what He was saying. A yoke was much different than a harness. Harnesses are used to multiply “horsepower” from the animals. A yoke in Jesus’ culture was used as a tool to train young animals how to do their job and be useful to their master. This distinction is so important. He is saying, “Come to me and learn from me. That’s how you’ll find rest.” The good news for us is that we don’t have to keep trying to figure it all out on our own! We can look to Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2), yoke ourselves to Him, and find rest and confidence in Him.
- What comes to mind when you think about what it means to find rest in God alone?
- What is something that you need refuge from today?
- How can you yoke yourself to Jesus today? What is one practical thing you can learn from Jesus and implement in your life today?
Did You Know?
Prior to becoming king and amassing a great wealth, David lived in deep poverty. He knew what it meant for his riches to increase (v. 10) and the importance of not setting his heart upon them.