I call to the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from
my enemies. The cords of death entangled me; the torrents of
destruction overwhelmed me. The cords of the grave coiled
around me; the snares of death confronted me. In my distress
I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help.
When we read about the early battles of David, beginning with his victory over the giant Goliath and the Philistines, we are reminded that war is the rule and peace the exception: “Here they come swift and speedily! Their arrows are sharp, all their bows are strung; their horses hoofs seem like flint, their chariot wheels like a whirlwind. Their roar is like that of the lion, they roar like young lions; they growl as they seize their prey and carry it off with no one to rescue. In that day they will roar over it like the roaring of the sea. And if one looks at the land, he will see darkness and distress; even the light will be darkened by the clouds” (Isaiah 5:26, 28).
War has always been part of the human experience, but over the years, some have come to believe that in our own times we are exempt from the awful forces of history so evident in earlier times. That is, until September 11, 2001, when we were awakened from our slumber and reintroduced to an aspect of history we would prefer to deny.
Whether we experience war as Isaiah described it, or we experience battles of a more private sort, David called out to God for help in his time of trouble and that should point the way for each of us. For when everything else fails, David has a “rock, a fortress and a deliverer” who will not fail him.