“To the choirmaster leader, a psalm of David, the servant of Yahweh, who addressed the words of this song to Yahweh on the day when Yahweh delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul.
‘I love you!
Yahweh is my rock.
Yahweh is my fortress.
Yahweh is my deliverer.
I take refuge in God.
Yahweh is my shield.
Yahweh is the horn of my salvation.
Yahweh is my stronghold.
I call upon Yahweh.
He is worthy to be praised.
I shall be saved from my enemies.’”
Psalm 18 is a very long psalm with a long introduction. It portrays the final victory of David against all his enemies, especially Saul. This is almost identical to the canticle or song of David in 2 Samuel, chapter 22. Thus it is a royal psalm of thanksgiving. These first few phrases, including the introduction, are almost word for word from 2 Samuel. What a beautiful introduction. He loved Yahweh. Yahweh, his God, was his strength, his rock, and his fortress in whom he took refuge. God was his shield, his horn, his stronghold, and his savior. David was saved from his enemies. Surely Yahweh was worthy to be praised.
“Why do the nations conspire?
Why do the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth set themselves.
The rulers take counsel together.
They are against Yahweh
And his anointed.
‘Let us burst their bonds asunder.
Let us cast their cords from us.’”
Psalm 2 is about the universal kingdom of Yahweh and his anointed one who will rule the world until the end of the kingdom. Once again, there is no introduction. Christians have picked up on the anointed one as the messianic king of Israel, which of course they see as Jesus the anointed one, the Christ. This psalm was even cited as a psalm of David in the Acts of the Apostles, chapter 4, although there is no notation as such on this psalm. This work about Yahweh and his anointed king is considered a royal psalm. If written during the time of the captivity in the 6th century BCE, it would be about an ideal anointed king to come, not a current king. The various nations and people of the earth, the non-Israelites, took counsel, conspired, and plotted in vain against Yahweh and his anointed king. They were trying to figure out how to burst their bonds apart. They wanted to be rid of the yoke of the great King Yahweh.
“These are the inheritances that the Israelites received in the land of Canaan, which the priest Eleazar and Joshua son of Nun, with the heads of the families of the tribes of the Israelites distributed to them. Their inheritance was by lot, as Yahweh had commanded Moses for the nine and one-half tribes. Moses had given an inheritance to the two and one-half tribes beyond the Jordan. But to the Levites he gave no inheritance among them. The people of Joseph were two tribes, Manasseh and Ephraim. No portion was given to the Levites in the land, but only towns to live in, with their pasture lands for their flocks and herds. The Israelites did as Yahweh commanded Moses. They allotted the land.”
Now we are on the west side of the Jordan. How will the land be distributed here? Although it seems a little odd, they will do it by lot, which was commanded by Yahweh via Moses. Joshua and Eleazar will conduct this lottery, with the heads of the various tribes to set up things in Canaan, the Promised Land. Three tribes seem to dominate on the west bank of the Jordan, Judah and the two sons of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim.