Study Guide – Psalm 4

Psalm04
1 Answer me when I call to you,
    my righteous God.
Give me relief from my distress;
    have mercy on me and hear my prayer.


Have you ever had one of those days where life seems to be against you? Psalm 4 reflects a series of those types of days. In what ways might a person experiencing trouble resonate with David's prayer in verse 1?


2 How long will you people turn my glory into shame?
    How long will you love delusions and seek false gods?
3 Know that the Lord has set apart his faithful servant for himself;
    the Lord hears when I call to him.


David turns his attention to the people of God in verse 2-3. From these verses, what do you learn about what must be causing many days of strain? 


Have you ever known someone who was supposed to be following after God but instead pursued "delusions" and other desires? How does the unfaithfulness of another person cause you trouble?


Why would David write the words of verse 3 immediately after verse 2?


4 Tremble and do not sin;
    when you are on your beds,
    search your hearts and be silent.
5 Offer the sacrifices of the righteous
    and trust in the Lord.


Why do you think David advises the people of God the way he does in verses 4-5? From these instructions, what lessons do you need to apply in your life?


6 Many, Lord, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?”
    Let the light of your face shine on us.
7 Fill my heart with joy
    when their grain and new wine abound.


David turns his attention back to God in verses 6-7. What do you learn about why other people may have given themselves over to "delusions" and "false gods"?


How do you imagine David was able stay faithful during these trying days?


Why does David need to ask God to fill his heart with joy in verse 6? Why would he not automatically have joy when prosperity is restored?


8 In peace I will lie down and sleep,
    for you alone, Lord,
    make me dwell in safety. NIV


Now that David seems to have vented his heart towards God and towards the people that are upsetting him (verses 1-7), he is ready to go to sleep (verse 8). How might this example establish a healthy pattern for your own life?


::::: Equipping Challenge :::::

If you need to, take time either now or later tonight to vent to the Lord any grieviences you may have towards others (and perhaps consider Colossians 3:13 if it would be helpful). Follow David's example in verses 7-8 as the goal of your venting process.

Ken Castor

Ken Castor is a husband, dad, pastor, writer and teacher. He serves as a professor at Crown College, Minnesota, where he equips students to pursue Jesus-Centered Faith and Next Generation Ministry. For 20+ years he's focused on equipping the next generations in places like the U.S., Canada, and Northern Ireland. He's the author of Grow Down (Simply Youth Ministry, 2014), Make a Difference (Broadstreet, 2016), the Blue-Letters Editor of the Jesus-Centered Bible (Group, 2015) and numerous other articles and Bible Study guides. But, whenever possible, he gets down on the floor and builds Lego with his kids. Connect with him @kencastor.

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