Thursday, June 16, 2022

The Psalms of King David (Psalms)

It is my opinion that it is not enough to attempt to avoid evil by memorizing hymns. You can spend as many wasted hours humming hymns as singing rock songs.  Neither one will particularly elevate you. Meditating on doctrine, pressing understanding, pondering deeply and engaging the mysteries of God are what will fill the mind with light.  Having said that, music and the frequencies they emit can positively or negatively affect the soul. 


Why were the Psalms quoted by Christ more than any other scripture?

They are filled with truths worth meditation.

Despite his sins and fall from grace, David was a man after His own heart (see 1 Samuel 13:14); David was a friend of the Lord’s from the “first place” or in a prior eternity; and the Lord still loved David after his fall or he wouldn’t have quoted him so much during his mortal ministry.

The Lord seems to love poetry – Isaiah is also one of His favorites (see 3 Nephi 23:1).



The Psalms Testify of Christ

“All things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me” (see Luke 24:44).


How do the Psalms testify of Christ – what examples can you identify?

The Messiah would be a priest (Psalm 110:4), and king (Psalm 2:6).

Be God the Father's Son (Psalm 2:7).

Be called Lord (Psalm 110:1).

He would have zeal for His Father's house and reproach those who would violate it (Psalm 69:9).

He would teach in parables (Psalm 78:2).

His word is a lamp and light (Psalm 119:105).

He would be a stumbling block to the Jews (Psalm 118:22).

He would calm the waves (Psalm 107:23-30).

And in the end, be betrayed by a friend (Psalm 41:9).

He would be falsely accused (Psalm 35:11).

He would be mocked (Psalm 22:7).

He would be thirsty (Psalm 69:21).

He would ask God why He had forsaken Him (Psalm 22:1).

He would commit His spirit to God (Psalm 31:5).

He would be resurrected (Psalm 16:10).

And ascend to heaven (Psalm 68:18) to sit at the right hand of God (Psalm 110:1).

READ Psalm 22

How did Christ testify of Himself by quoting the Psalms?

In his last hours, Christ attempted to testify to all those who would listen regarding who He was - the Messiah prophesied by David – by quoting Psalm 22 to them – which was happening before their eyes at that moment.



Have Mercy on Me

READ Psalm 51 and Psalm 69

After David compounded his adultery with the murder of Uriah, what did he do?

He desperately petitioned the Lord for mercy, in the bitterness of his soul.

Psalm 51 - Have mercy on me, O God, according to thy loving kindness.

Psalm 69:1-20 - Save me, O God, for the waters are come in unto my soul.



Insights into the Atonement

What two ways does the Psalms teach us to think about our need for the Atonement?

Being cast out of the presence of the Lord - “spiritual death” - D&C 19; Psalm 22.

Being brought back, unworthy, into the presence of the Lord - “judgement” - Mormon 9:4-5; 2 Nephi 9:14-16.

As a sufferer because of sin himself, David’s psalms teach us about Christ’s atonement… as well as foreshadowing many of the events of Christ’s life… making David a prophet.  Although David suffered for his own sins, that same suffering was experienced by Christ, multiplied by infinity. 


READ D&C 19:15-19 and Alma 34:9-10,14

What do Psalms 22, 51 and 69 teach us about the Atonement, from Christ’s perspective?

“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid, as it were, our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.  Surely, he HATH borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.” (Isaiah 53:3-4).



A New Song: Receiving Christ’s Mercy

READ Psalm 116:7-9; Psalm 30:5 JST; Psalm 27; Psalm 40; Psalm 23

What do these Psalms teach us about the Lord’s mercy?

“As often as my people repent will I forgive them their trespasses against me” (Mosiah 26:29).

He is a “first watch God” when it comes to mercy (Alma 34:31 and Mosiah 25:10 and Mosiah 4:2-3 and Alma 15:8-11 and Alma 36:18-20).

When the Lord comes to you, you will NOT be worthy - no one is – and as He cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance, His first order of business is to forgive your sins.



The Fall of a Prophet

READ Acts 2:29-30 and D&C 132:39

Is it possible for a Prophet like David to fall?


No one is infallible (see also the “Race and the Church” statement where Brigham Young and others of the early Brethren made policies and doctrines that were “in the absence of direct revelation” but positioned them as if they were.

While you are in this world, as Paul put it, you stand in jeopardy every hour. (1 Cor. 15: 30.) Here is the place in which the trial, the test, the temptation, the burden of mortality exists. It exists for so long as you have the flesh.

David rejoices in the Lord that he has not been cast off forever (he is not a son of perdition), but he has lost the gifts and promises that the Lord had made unto him, i.e. his exaltation and his wives, including Abigail (who was symbolic of Christ).


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