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Psalm 27:3

ESV Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident.
NIV Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.
NASB If an army encamps against me, My heart will not fear; If war arises against me, In spite of this I am confident.
CSB Though an army deploys against me, my heart will not be afraid; though a war breaks out against me, I will still be confident.
NLT Though a mighty army surrounds me, my heart will not be afraid. Even if I am attacked, I will remain confident.
KJV Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.

What does Psalm 27:3 mean?

This creates an interesting contrast with a later statement in this psalm, where David pleads with God not to forsake him (Psalm 27:9). The first verses of this psalm present the idea that David has no reason to fear, thanks to what he knows of God. Questions such as "of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1) are more statements than inquiries. David is expressing the fact that he has no reason to fear—but that does not mean he is literally immune to anxiety.

Faith, as expressed in the Bible, is trust in the face of uncertainty. David's faith in the Lord as his light, salvation, and stronghold would not lag even if an army laid siege around him. His confidence remained firm even if an enemy should declare war against him. In moments of emotion, he would cry out to God (Psalm 22:1; 27:12), but not from a place of despair.

An incident from the life of Elisha shows how capable the Lord is to protect His followers. Elisha warned the king of Israel about where the Syrian army planned to be, so the king of Syria plotted to destroy Elisha. He sent a great army by night to surround the city of Dothan, where Elisha and his servant were staying. In the morning, Elisha asked the Lord to open his servant's eyes that he might see how the Lord would protect them. When the Lord opened the servant's eyes, the servant saw horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha (see 2 Kings 6:8–17). Sometimes, we may feel surrounded by threatening circumstances, but the Lord surrounds us with His grace that is sufficient for every crisis (2 Corinthians 12:9).
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