“Then my soul shall rejoice in Yahweh.
My soul shall exalt in his deliverance.
All my bones shall say.
Who is like you?
You deliver the weak
From those who are too strong for them.
You deliver the weak and the needy
From those who despoil them.’”
David’s soul rejoiced in Yahweh. He exalted in his deliverance. All his bones would say “Who is like Yahweh?” Yahweh delivered the weak from the strong. He delivered the weak and the needy from the people who defiled them. Yahweh was the great deliverer.
They hid their net for me.
They dug a pit for my life.
Let ruin come upon them unawares!
Let the net that they hid
Let them fall in!
Let it be to their ruin!”
David noted that these things were done to him without a good cause. They hid a net to trap him. They dug a pit to put an end to his life. David wanted them to get caught in their own nets. He wanted them to fall into the pits that they had dug out to get him. This was to be their ruin. Clearly David was vindictive here because he believed that he was right because they did not have a good cause against him.
“Let them be put to shame!
Let them be put to dishonor!
All who seek after my life,
Let them be turned back!
Let them be confounded!
All who devise evil against me,
Let them be like chaff before the wind!
Let the angel of Yahweh drive them on!
Let their way be dark!
Let their way be slippery!
Let the angel of Yahweh pursue them!”
David wanted all those who were after his life and devising evil against him be put to shame, dishonored, turned back, and confounded. He wanted them to be chaff in the wind. He wanted the angel of Yahweh to drive them into darkness on a slippery slope. He wanted the angel of Yahweh to pursue them. He wanted bad things to happen to his enemies. He wanted Yahweh or his angel to seek vengeance for him.
“A psalm of David
With those who contend with me!
Fight against those
Who fight against me!
Take hold of shield and buckler!
Rise up to help me!
Draw the spear and the javelin
Against my pursuers!
Say to my soul.
‘I am your deliverance!’”
Once again, Psalm 35 is a lamentation asking for help, much like Psalm 22 and 31. There are no indications of any incident in the life of David, but there is only the simple reference to David in the title. David wanted Yahweh to fight on his side against his pursuers. He wanted Yahweh to protect him with a shield, a buckler, a spear, and a javelin. This was no pure spiritual aid. David wanted military aid. He wanted Yahweh to be his deliverer and his savior in the times of battle.