Why Are You Cast Down, O My Soul?

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Reading the Word

Psalm 42:6–11 (ESV)

6 My soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep at the roar of your waterfalls; all your breakers and your waves have gone over me. 8 By day the Lord commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God, my rock: “Why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” 10 As with a deadly wound in my bones, my adversaries taunt me, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.

Understanding and Applying the Word

The psalmist is in despair. He describes his feelings using the imagery of a powerful waterfall that pushes its waves over him and beats him up. In this despair he calls out to God, “Why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”

Yet there is hope in the midst of the despair. Notice what we find in verse 6. The psalmist writes, “therefore I remember you…” And in verse 9 he writes, “I say to God my Rock.” Even in despair, we see that God is the hope of this writer, which is why he ends this psalm with the words “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.”

In life, our faith in God will be tested. It is in the difficult times that we face that we will know what kind of faith we truly have. Is it a faith that turns away and runs when things are hard? Or, is it a faith that gives us confidence to go on in the face of adversity? God is with us at all times and in all situations. Do you trust him?

**Shaped by the Word is a daily Bible reading devotional. Please use the links at the bottom to subscribe to this page. You can also share this post with your friends through social media using the buttons below. Thanks for reading!

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