The Psalm as we sing it on Sunday is a song of confidence and trust.
Missing from the words we sing is the exploration of the dangers and fears that can confound us, and from which we need the Lord to save us.
As the word of God gives us confidence to place our trust in God, so it can give us courage to know and name the things that threaten our well-being and from which we look to God to save us.
(NB the text set for Sunday is given below in bold and in ‘quote sections’ below; the rest is the immediate biblical text from which the Lectionary text is extracted)
Psalm 27 (26)
The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life;
whom should I dread?
2 When those who do evil draw near
to devour my flesh,
it is they, my enemies and foes,
who stumble and fall.
3 Though an army encamp against me,
my heart would not fear.
Though war break out against me,
even then would I trust.
4 There is one thing I ask of the Lord,
only this do I seek:
to live in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord,
to inquire at his temple.
5 For there he keeps me safe in his shelter
in the day of evil.
He hides me under cover of his tent;
he sets me high upon a rock.
6 And now my head shall be raised
above my foes who surround me,
and I shall offer within his tent
a sacrifice of joy.
I will sing and make music for the Lord.
7 O Lord, hear my voice when I call;
have mercy and answer me.
8 Of you my heart has spoken,
“Seek his face.”
It is your face, O Lord, that I seek;
9 hide not your face from me.
Dismiss not your servant in anger;
you have been my help.
Do not abandon or forsake me,
O God, my Saviour!
10 Though father and mother forsake me,
the Lord will receive me.
11 Instruct me, Lord, in your way;
on an even path lead me
because of my enemies.
12 Do not leave me to the will of my foes,
for false witnesses rise up against me,
and they breathe out violence.
13 I believe I shall see the Lord’s goodness
in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the Lord; be strong;
be stout-hearted, and wait for the Lord!
Translation of Psalms: From The Revised Grail Psalms: A Liturgical Psalter. (c) 2010.
Commentary: (c) 2020, Allen Morris
Photo (c) 2016, Allen Morris. St Nicolas church, Nantes, France.