Psalms 89 – Turning of the Tables

Pleading upon the behalf of David, we see Ethan the Ezrahite.  Who constitutes this mysterious figure that sings of the mercy of the Lord, and pleads the promises upon the behalf of David, but tells the Lord what calamity hath fallen upon the king?  The name Ethan literally means permanent and comes from a root meaning optimistically strong,  firm, and continual. Solomon’s wisdom was compared to his: “And Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east country, and all the wisdom of Egypt.  For he was wiser than all men; than [even] Ethan the Ezrahite” 1 Kng. 4:30-31.  So this Ethan had an unusual wisdom that the king that brought forth thousands of proverbs and handled matters with keenest judgment was compared to this man’s.  Ethan brings to remembrance the promises and blessings that the Lord had pronounced upon the covenant with David and the mighty arm of Jehovah:

“I have found David my servant; with my holy oil have I anointed him: with whom my hand shall be established: mine arm also shall strengthen him.”

Ethan recounts all that the Lord would do for David, His anointed.  But then Ethan contrasts what is with what was promised and cries unto the ears of the Lord:

“Thou hast made void the covenant of thy servant: thou hast profaned his crown by casting it to the ground…

…The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame. How long, LORD? wilt thou hide thyself for ever?…

…Remember, Lord, the reproach of thy servants; how I do bear in my bosom the reproach of all the mighty people…wherewith they have reproached the footsteps of thine anointed.”

Ethan pleads with the Lord concerning the great reproach fallen upon David.  But there is a great purpose in it all; and the Lord would arise to perform a mighty work for His servant and child, as the tone of Ethan changes:

“Blessed be the LORD for evermore. Amen, and Amen.”

May the Lord lovingly lead you to know His name,

Jeffrey Maxwell


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