My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me. —Psalm 63:8
When NASA began using a new kind of space telescope to capture different spectrums of light, researchers were surprised at one of the photos. It shows what looks like fingers, a thumb, and an open palm showered with spectacular colors of blue, purple, green, and gold. Some have called it “The Hand of God.”
The idea of God reaching out His hand to help us in our time of need is a central theme of Scripture. In Psalm 63 we read: “Because You have been my help, therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice. My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me” (vv.7-8). The psalmist felt God’s divine help like a hand of support. Some Bible teachers believe that King David wrote this psalm in the wilderness of Judah during the terrible time of his son Absalom’s rebellion. Absalom had conspired to dethrone his father, and David fled to the wilderness (2 Sam. 15–16). Even during this difficult time, God was present and David trusted in Him. He said, “Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You” (Ps. 63:3).
Life can be painful at times, yet God offers His comforting hand in the midst of it. We are not beyond His reach.
Beneath His watchful eye
His saints securely dwell;
That hand which bears all nature up
Shall guard His children well. —Doddridge
INSIGHT: The superscription to this psalm indicates that David was a refugee in the wilderness when he wrote it, either at the time when he was fleeing from Saul (1 Sam. 23:14-15; 24:1) or fleeing from his own son Absalom (2 Sam. 15:14,23,28). Because David addresses himself as “king” (Ps. 63:11), some Bible teachers believe that he was fleeing from his son. His life in danger (vv.9-10), David sought out and trusted God for protection and safety (vv.1-2). Instead of allowing his troubles to overwhelm him, David sang of God’s lovingkindness (v.3), meditated on His presence (v.6), and rejoiced in His deliverance (vv.9-11).