Journey Through The Scriptures

Psalms of Comfort and Hope

Lesson 2: A Cry For Mercy

(Scripture to Read: Psalm 6)

This psalm was written by David, “Israel’s singer of songs” (2 Samuel 23:1) and the most prolific of the psalmists. The psalm begins with expressions of strong physical and emotional pain – and yet concludes with a note of hope as David turns to God for mercy and deliverance from his agony.

David may have been in pain from an illness or injury of some sort, or more likely he was feeling the effects of God’s chastening for wrongdoing. David’s anguish was taking a heavy toll; to speak of one’s “bones” was to refer to the entire body.

David was not only suffering under the Lord’s rebuke, but was surrounded by his enemies. In the midst of these trials, David appealed to God in two ways: because of His chesed, or unfailing love, and because David would not be able to offer God praise if he died.

Here we see a weak (“faint”) person who cries out for God’s strength because his own strength has failed. David opened his heart to God, who accepted his prayer and rescued him.

Study Questions

  1. Why did David ask God to withdraw His anger and wrath against him?
  2. Was David’s plea for mercy based on his goodness, or God’s?
  3. What helps us to know that David is relying on God and not himself in this situation?
  4. What gave David such confidence as he ended this psalm?

Something to Think About

Like David, we often come to the end of our rope, and have to admit that we are too weak to win the battles of life on our own. At times like these, we need to cry out for God to demonstrate His unfailing love and mercy to us. This is often the moment we learn that when we are at our weakest, God delights to show His faithfulness and power.