What does Psalms 70 mean?
Chapter Commentary:
This psalm is nearly identical to what David wrote at the end of Psalm 40 (Psalm 40:13–17). The only significant changes are in the terms used for God. Psalm 40 mostly uses YHWH, translated as "LORD" in most English versions, while Psalm 70 more often chooses Elohim, usually rendered as "God." It's likely that the end of Psalm 40 was used separately often enough that it was eventually treated as an independent psalm. Since David directly asks God to harm his enemies, this is considered one of the "imprecatory" psalms (Psalm 5; 10; 58; 69; 83; 109; 137; 140).

David begins with a plea for the Lord to act quickly. Scripture doesn't connect this psalm to any specific event in David's life. However, he was often in mortal danger. Here, enemies who lie and mock him are once again seeking his death. Their words are from the Hebrew heāh, meant here in the sneering way, as in the English "hah!" David's prayer is that God would turn those efforts around: so that ridiculing, vicious attackers would be themselves ashamed when their plans are frustrated. These opening verses are like Psalm 40:13–15 (Psalm 70:1–3).

Despite danger, David is still faithful. He calls on others to praise God, in anticipation of the rescue which is to come. David has no plans to let hardship dampen his faith (Psalm 40:16–17). Yet he is also humble. David thanks God for mercifully caring for him. David has nowhere else to turn so he once again asks God to bring relief quickly (Psalm 70:4–5).
Verse Context:
Psalm 70:1–3 closely resembles David's words in Psalm 40:13–15. This beginning is a prayer for God to rescue David and shame those who want to kill him. He asks God to thwart his enemies' plans and bring them disgrace for their evil acts and mockery.
Psalm 70:4–5 is nearly identical to what David wrote in Psalm 40:16–17. Though he is persecuted, David finds a reason to rejoice. He calls on everyone who loves God to celebrate by worshiping the Lord. David also acknowledges his limitations. He humbly asks God to rescue him, and quickly.
Chapter Summary:
David prays for a speedy deliverance from his enemies. He asks God to shame those who would hurt him and to frustrate their plans. David calls on the Lord to turn the mocking and hate of his enemies into their own disgrace. Even in that situation, David is confident in the Lord's salvation. Taking a position of humility, David pleads with God to hurry to him. He admits that his only hope comes from the Lord, who he once again asks to respond quickly.
Chapter Context:
This is one of several psalms asking God to deliver David from his enemies (Psalm 3; 38; 59; 140). The words here are nearly identical to a segment from another of David's psalms (Psalm 40:13–17). It's possible that a version of that refrain was used separately and eventually became considered an individual psalm. In his prayer David asks the Lord to hurry to deliver him. No specific event is associated with this song, but David experienced imminent danger many times.
Book Summary:
The book of Psalms is composed of individual songs, hymns, or poems, each of which is a ''Psalm'' in and of itself. These works contain a wide variety of themes. Some Psalms focus on praising and worshipping God. Others cry out in anguish over the pain of life. Still other Psalms look forward to the coming of the Messiah. While some Psalms are related, each has its own historical and biblical context.
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