Destroy those against Jerusalem (Zech 12:8-12:9)

“On that day,

Yahweh will shield

The inhabitants

Of Jerusalem.

Thus,

The feeblest among them,

On that day,

Shall be like David.

The house of David

Shall be like God.

The house of David

Shall be like the angel of Yahweh,

At their head.

On that day,

I will seek to destroy

All the nations

That come against Jerusalem.”

On this coming day, Yahweh was going to shield Jerusalem from all attacks.  The weakest among them would be like King David.  The house of David would be like God, with the angel of Yahweh leading it.  Yahweh was going to destroy every country that tried to go against Jerusalem.  This was a very strong defense of the city of Jerusalem and the Davidic royalty, on the day of Yahweh.

The law as a shield (Ps 119:113-119:120)

Samek

“I hate the double-minded people.

But I love your law.

You are my hiding place.

You are my shield.

I hope in your word.

Go away from me!

You evildoers!

Thus I may keep the commandments of my God.

Uphold me according to your promise!

Thus I may live.

Let me not be put to shame in my hope!

Hold me up!

Thus I may be safe.

I have regard for your statutes continually!

You spurn all who go astray from your statutes.

Their cunning is in vain.

All the wicked of the earth,

You count as dross.

Therefore I love your decrees.

My flesh trembles for fear of you.

I am afraid of your judgments.”

The psalmist did not like those who were double minded since he loved single minded people and the law. He used the law as a shield as he hoped in the word of God. He wanted the evildoers to go away so that he could keep the commandments of God. He wanted God’s promise to sustain his life so that he would not be put to shame. He wanted to be held safe according to the statutes of God. He knew that God spurned those who went astray from the commandments. Their cunning ways were useless and not worth anything. This psalmist, on the other hand, loved the decrees of God. He trembled with fear because he was afraid of God’s judgments. So ends this section on the fifteenth consonant letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Samek.

Yahweh is trustworthy (Ps 115:9-115:11)

“O Israel!

Trust in Yahweh!

He is their help.

He is their shield.

O house of Aaron!

Trust in Yahweh!

He is their help

He is their shield.

You who fear Yahweh!

Trust in Yahweh!

He is their help.

He is their shield.”

This choral hymn asks Israel to trust Yahweh. It also asks the house of Aaron, which are the priests, to trust Yahweh. They always seem to be separate in some sense from the rest of the Israelites. In the end they ask all who fear Yahweh to trust him. He was going to help them. He was going to be their shield against evil doers. Thus this two line refrain is repeated 3 times.

Happy are the people (Ps 89:15-89:18)

“Happy are the people

Who know the festal shout.

Happy are the people

Who walk in the light of your countenance.

Yahweh!

Happy are the people

Who exalt in your name all day long.

Happy are the people

Who extol your righteousness.

You are the glory of their strength.

By your favor our horn is exalted.

Our shield belongs to Yahweh,

Our king,

The holy one of Israel.”

The people are happy when they are able to shout at the festivals, when they walk in the light of Yahweh. They are happy when they exalt the name of Yahweh all day long. They extol Yahweh’s righteousness. They glory in his strength, since the horn was a symbol of strength. They were happy with their shield, the king who was the holy one of Israel.

Yahweh is my shield (Ps 84:9-84:12)

“Behold our shield!

O God!

Look on the face of your anointed!

A day in your courts is better

Than a thousand elsewhere.

I would rather be a doorkeeper

In the house of my God

Than live in the tents of wickedness.

Yahweh God is a sun.

Yahweh God is a shield.

He bestows favor.

He bestows honor.

No good thing does Yahweh withhold

From those who walk uprightly.

Yahweh of hosts!

Happy is everyone who trusts in you!”

This psalm ends with the psalmist reminding people on how to be happy, trust in Yahweh. Yahweh is his shield and protector. The psalmist wants God to look at his anointed one. He believes that one day in the courts of the Temple was better than 1,000 days elsewhere. He was happy to be a Temple door keeper than live in the tents of the wicked. Yahweh was his sun and shield at the same time. Yahweh had bestowed favors and honors on him. Yahweh does not hold back anything from the upright. Everyone who trusts in Yahweh is happy. How to be happy, trust in Yahweh.

Torture the wicked (Ps 59:11-59:13)

“Do not kill them!

My people may forget.

Make them totter

By your power!

Bring them down!

Yahweh!

Our shield!

For the sin of their mouths,

For the words of their lips,

Let them be trapped in their pride!

For the cursing that they utter,

For the lies that they utter,

Consume them in wrath!

Consume them

Until they are no more!

Then it will be known

To the ends of the earth

That God rules over Jacob.”

Selah

David did not want his enemies killed, he wanted vengeance. He wanted them to suffer so that his own people would not forget what evil was. The evil ones were to totter and be brought down. Yahweh was the shield and protector of good ones. The evildoers sinned with their words and their lips because they were trapped in pride. Thus they uttered curses and lies. They should be consumed in the wrath of God. In somewhat contradictory terms, David wanted them consumed until they actually died instead of just suffering. At that point, the whole world would know that the God of Jacob ruled the world. At that thought there was the musical interlude meditative pause, Selah.

David wants Yahweh to fight on his side (Ps 35:1-35:3)

A psalm of David

Contend!

Yahweh!

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.