As David fled from Saul, he went for help to Ahimelech the priest. He needed food and wanted to consult with the Lord, and it happened that Ahimelech also gave him Goliath's sword. All this resulted later in Ahimilech's death and the deaths of all of Ahimilech's family— except one.
This psalm starts and ends with the same refrain, and it is the same refrain as in Psalm 103. This psalm expounds on the majesty of God— especially as seen in His creation.
The power behind the new lives that God wants us to live is the Holy Spirit. A side observation here: We can see that the Holy Spirit can equally be called the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ (vs. 9-11). He is the power for transformation in our lives. But having God's Spirit in our lives does not mean that we will not suffer. In the second half of today's reading, note the Holy Spirit's role for us in the midst of our sufferings. Then at the end, note the wonderful promises given to us!
Four times in this chapter Paul refers to us as God’s ‘sons’. GNT translated ‘sons’ as gender sensitive children, and that is an acceptable translation. But I feel this time translating using the word ‘sons’ is better, but I will need to explain. Just as men feel a bit squeamish about being included in the ‘bride of Christ’ in Ephesians, I am sure there are some of the women listeners who will not feel comfortable being included as sons. But look for the treasure here! This passage and Ephesians 1:5 show that we are given legal adopted status as sons. In Roman law, the adoption of a son could not be undone. God has made the unchangeable decision that we would be his legally adopted sons and have all the rights and privileges of that status. Thank the Lord for our union with his Son, Jesus! Note that in the middle of the references to ‘sons’, Paul also used the Greek word that means ‘children’. The change between the two words is part of the reason that I think the use of ‘sons’ was important to Paul.
GNT Translation notes:
1Sam. 23:25 Saul and his men set out to look for David, but [David//he] heard about it and went to a rocky hill in the wilderness of Maon and stayed there. When Saul heard about this, he went after David.
Ps 104:19 You [O Lord,] created the moon to mark the months; the sun knows the time to set. The young lions roar while they hunt, looking for the food that God provides.
21 The young lions roar while they hunt, looking for the food that [You provide//God provides].
31 [O Lord, may your glory//May the glory of the Lord] last forever!
May [You,//the] Lord be happy with what [You have//he has] made!
32 [You look//He looks] at the earth, and it trembles; [You touch//he touches] the mountains, and they pour out smoke.
33 I will sing to [You, O Lord my God//the Lord] all my life; as long as I live I will sing praises to [You//my God].
34 May [You//he] be pleased with my song, for my gladness comes from [You//him].
Rom. 8:9 But you [no longer//do not] live as your human nature tells you to; instead, you live as the Spirit tells you to—if, in fact, God's Spirit lives in you. Whoever does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
14 Those who are led by God's Spirit are God's [sons//children].
15 For the Spirit that God has given you does not make you slaves and cause you to be afraid; instead, the Spirit makes you God's [sons//children], and by the Spirit's power we cry out to God, “Father! [(Abba)] my Father!”
19 All of creation waits with eager longing for God to reveal his [sons//children].
23 But it is not just creation alone which groans; we who have the Spirit as the first of God's gifts also groan within ourselves as we wait for God to make us his [sons//children] and set our whole being free.
28 We know that in all things God works for [the] good [of//with] those who love him, those whom he has called according to his purpose.
34 Who, then, will condemn [us//them]? Not Christ Jesus, who died, or rather, who was raised to life and is at the right side of God, pleading with him for us!
36 As the scripture [so realistically//truly//appropriately] [admits//says], “For your sake we are in danger of death at all times; we are treated like sheep that are going to be slaughtered.”
37 [That’s true, but//No,] in all these things we have complete victory through him who loved us!
NLT Translation notes:
Ps. 104:21 Then the young lions roar for their prey,
stalking the food provided by [You, O] God.
34 May all my thoughts be pleasing to [You, O God//him],
for I rejoice in [in You, O Lord//the LORD].
Rom. 8:5 Those who are dominated by the sinful nature [just] think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit.
9 But you are not controlled by your sinful nature [any longer]. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you. (And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all.)
10 [0/And] Christ lives within you, so even though your body will die because of sin, the Spirit gives you lifed because you have been made right with God.