(6) When I remember you upon my bed, I meditate on you through the night watches, (7) for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. (8) My soul clings to you. Your right hand supports me. (9) But those who seek the destruction of my soul will go down into the depths of the earth. (10) They will be delivered over to the power of the sword. They will become prey for jackals, (11) for the king will rejoice in God. All who swear by him will exult, but the mouths of those who speak lies will be silenced.
In this second and final segment of Psalm 63, one repeated word, “soul,” suggests an outline (vss. 8 & 9). David first describes his soul, his inner non-material being, as clinging to God and rejoicing in his help and support (vs. 8). It is actually his soul, his essential person, that David’s enemies are seeking to destroy (vs. 9). Facing this threat, David rejoices in God’s protection and deliverance from the power and vindictiveness of those opposed to him (vss. 10 & 11).
I. Rejoicing in God’s protection (6-8)
II. Relying on God to deliver me (9-11)
Those who rely on God to deliver them can rejoice in his protection from all who are seeking to destroy them.
In this psalm we encounter a familiar phrase, “in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy” (vs. 7). This figure of speech appears in several previously considered psalms (17:8, 36:7, & 57:1), and we will encounter it again when we come to Psalm 91:4. This metaphor portrays God as caring for us lovingly and selflessly just as a mother hen instinctively gathers her chicks under her wings to shield them in times of danger.
In light of this, consider Jesus’ poignant words: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing” (Mt. 23:37). In Peter’s second epistle we read, “He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9). The Lord’s desire is that everyone would find refuge in his compassionate care, under the protection of his outstretched wings. However, God never violates our will nor coerces us into doing what we are unwilling to do. This is what makes the phrase, “but you were not willing,” sound so tragic, so heartrending. Those who resist God’s grace will never be forced to abandon their determination to turn away from him and refuse his help. Thus, they will reap for themselves a harvest of the severest consequences.
We should take a few moments to rejoice in the protection found under the shadow of our Savior’s wings. Then we should take an additional few moments to pray for those around us who continue to refuse God's gracious gift of salvation in Christ that they might receive his offer of life before that fateful day of judgment arrives and it is too late to turn to him.