(Psalms 16:2-3) “O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee; (3) But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.”
This Psalm has been expounded between two thoughts of interpretation. First, they are the Words of Christ, our Representative; God in the flesh. Second, they are the words of David. The devotions in this series are presenting these words as the Words of Christ, the saint’s Representative.
The Subject of this Psalm is the Lord Jesus Christ. David records the Words of Christ as our Representative; as our Perfect Savior; and as our Forerunner to the Father. Some of His statements relate only to Christ, the Perfect Lamb of God; His Only Begotten Son; God in the flesh. Other times His statements are as our Substitute; speaking for us in His Perfection; which also applies to us because we are His Body; the Church.
In the previous devotion, David wrote of Christ’s petition to the Father for us. First, Christ petitioned the Father to, “…Preserve me, O God.” Look at (Heb. 5:7) “Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;” This speaks of God in the flesh; our Representative. Christ is recorded in the Gospels praying many times. Christ being God in the flesh, needed not to pray; because, being God Himself, He was (and is) omniscience, or all-knowing. But, as our Representative; our Head; our Pattern; and our Example; Christ prays to the Father; not to get help; but, to teach us where help is for His Body, the children of God. Now that is established; note the petition itself.
To Whom the Petition is Directed
David gives us the launch statement in verse 2 to Christ’s petition to the Father as our Representative; for Christ was God in the flesh, and needed no help for Himself. But, as the saint’s Representative, He speaks for the saints, “…thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord…” Or, this may be simply put, “I have said to Jehovah, thou art my LORD.” David points out that all prayer is directed to Jehovah, for He is the only God, for there is no other God to petition.
The Content of the Petition
I. The Explanation:
A). The What
The petition states, “…my goodness extendeth not to thee.” The Hebrew Word used here for “goodness” denotes primarily “prosperity,” or “happiness” (Ps. 106:5a). Christ said, ‘My Goodness (or My Prosperity, My Happiness, My Perfection, My Righteousness, My Holiness) is not for Thee, or for Thy Benefit, LORD; but, for the “saints” (Psalms 16:3). That is, it ensures to them (“the saints”) “my Goodness” (or My Prosperity, Happiness, Perfection).
There is no prosperity or perfection besides or beyond Thee. The word “extendeth” (Hebrew word “aleyka”) means, “besides thee or beyond thee”; which means, is not besides thee or without thee; for there is no other Source of happiness or prosperity. But God, and the Goodness of God was manifested in Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4:6-7).
Then David (as he writes of Christ) gives us (the receivers of Christ) Goodness (or Prosperity, Happiness, and Perfection); the Receivers are the Saints (Psalms 16:3), “But to the saints.” The saints are:
- Those who are sanctified, or set apart, by God the Father in His Eternal Purpose in Christ (Eph. 1:4-11);
- Those whose sins are atoned by the blood of Christ in redemption (Eph. 1:7; Rom. 3:34-35);
- Those who are sanctified, or made holy, by the Spirit of God in the effectual calling (2 Tim. 1:9); and
- Those who live a holy life and conversation (1 Peter 1:15-16).
B). The Who:
“That are in the earth” – that is, in the land of Palestine, the residence of God’s chosen people; figuratively, the Church
“And to the excellent” – excellent, or nobles; distinguished for moral excellence; speaking of the saints, the people of God, the chosen people of God, the true Jew as defined by the Apostle Paul in (Rom. 2: 28-29)
“In whom is all my delight.” The “us”; the chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (Eph. 1:4-11); the Sheep of (Isa. 53:1-12; Jn. 10:1-30); the receivers of the Grace, Mercy and Love of God; even the people of God. (Deut. 10:15) “Only the LORD had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and he chose their seed after them, even you above all people, as it is this day.” (Jer. 9:24) “But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD”
II. The Application:
How can we make application to our lives today in the 21st Century?
First, know if you are one of the “excellent.” That is: to know that you have been born from above by the Holy Spirit of God (1 Jn.5:20); to know that you have an internal witness from the Holy Spirit that you are a child of God (Rom. 8:14-16), whereby, you cry out, “…Abba, Father.”
Second, “in whom is all my delight.” Rest in, and have confidence, that you are the apple of Christ’s eye; that all the Promises of God are yours as a child of God. Know that you are in fact secure now and forever in Christ (Rom. 8:29-39). Know that you are a temple of Christ (1 Cor. 3:16), Know that you are not your own. Therefore, glorify Him in body and spirit (1 Cor. 6:19-20); be holy in all manner of behavior (1 Peter 1:15-16); walk as Christ walked (1 Jn. 2:6); bear the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23); be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:23); walk in the Spirit; be led of the Spirit; and live in the Spirit (Gal. 5:16, 18. 25).
Third, Rejoice that Christ’s Goodness (or His Grace, Mercy, and Love) has been given to you. Praise God that you have not received what you deserve; that you have received not condemnation – but rather, you are His delight, as you are a temple of Christ and now a witness of Christ on this earth; as His Light shines of His Love, Mercy and Grace into the darkness of this evil world. Therefore, now you are a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17). You have a new will; a new desire to walk in holiness and peace. You are now an ambassador of reconciliation for Christ, Who is the Redeemer; the Sacrifice for sin; the Substitute for the sinner, to bear the punishment (or penalty) of the sinner’s debt to God; and the Savior of the sinner from the penalty, punishment, practice, and power of sin.
Oh, how can the redeemed sinner do anything but praise Christ for being the Object of His Love, Mercy, and Grace.