The devastating cries from Moab (Jer 48:3-48:5)

“‘Hark!

A cry from Horonaim,

‘Desolation!

Great destruction!’

‘Moab is destroyed.’

Her little ones cry out!

At the ascent of Luhith

They go up weeping bitterly.

At the descent of Horonaim

They have heard

The distressing cry

Of anguish.”

Jeremiah explains that if you listen carefully, you can hear the cries from Horonaim or Horonan that may derive from the god Horon, a word for a cave or valley. These distressing cries of anguish spoke about desolation and destruction. This ascent of Luhith was also mentioned in Isaiah, chapter 15. It is clear that there was a lot of crying and weeping because of the destruction all around Moab.

David asks for mercy (Ps 57:1-57:3)

To the choirmaster leader, according to Do Not Destroy, a Miktam of David, when he fled from Saul in the cave

“Be merciful to me!

O God!

Be merciful to me!

In you

My soul takes refuge.

In the shadow of your wings,

I will take refuge

Until the destroying storms pass by.

I cry to God,

Most High,

To God who fulfils his purpose for me.

He will send from heaven.

He will save me.

He will put to shame

Those who trample on me.”

Selah

Following up the theme from the preceding psalm, this Psalm 57 has David escaping from King Saul in a cave that can be found in 1 Samuel, chapter 24. There was a slight reconciliation between David and King Saul in the cave. This psalm is set to the tune of “Do not Destroy,” whose melody we do not know. There are 3 other psalms with this melody heading, including the next 2, Psalms 58 and 59. It may also be a reference to the idea that David never liked to see his enemies die, especially King Saul and his son Absalom. David wanted God’s mercy. He was taking refuge under the wings of God during terrible storms. He knew that God would save him. God would put to shame those who tried to trample him. This section ends with the musical interlude meditative pause, Selah.