David Sang Anyway


“I have been young, and now I am old; yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken.”[1] So wrote an aged disciple with decades to speak of; an elderly king with bruises from his crown could reflect on the kindness of the Almighty with both the luxury of retrospect and credibility of time. With a testimony laid bare for us to see even today, none could claim David earned the legacy of righteousness he is given. He himself would never try. His unwavering confidence as he neared the end of his days was in the unrelenting mercy of his benevolent Maker, knowing he was but a gleaming trophy of it.

Perhaps the heaviest weight mankind has carried in our exile since Eden is the knowledge of our insufficiencies before the Holy. Indeed, our earliest parents’ immediate response to their transparent bankruptcy and treason was not denial, but shame.[2] While many gurus have since attempted to explain, alleviate or self-medicate guilt’s indelible burn, we know even from that man made of dust our best and only hope is to step out from the hedges and own up to the One with eyes blind to nothing and no one. Adam discovered quite quickly fig leaves couldn’t save him, and David didn’t dare try to stitch his own after the disaster that was Ziklag.[3] 

It is one thing to speak of the Just and Righteous One who inhabits eternity, dwelling in approachable light,[4] sufficient to shake the knees of even the bravest man.[5] It is another to speak of His kindness, never incongruent with His commitment to ensure a reckoning for every wicked thought and deed.[6] We must speak of both. We must know both. We must, like David, sing of both.

Daring to approach the Lord of Glory with a defiled tongue and deceitful heart requires, by necessity, utmost audacity. In this Kingdom, traitors deserve death.[7] Yet there is a gleam in our King’s eye which penetrates both our insufficiency and insecurity and beckons us to carry our shame to His throne—with boldness. With confidence. With a hopeful heart we don’t deserve to have. It is at this throne upholding Him who is Truth[8], eternally grounded by infallible righteousness and justice, that our fig leaves are removed, our sins are atoned for, our shame is absolved, and our frames are decorated with a new, sufficient covering.

David was no stranger to stupid. Any casual stroll through Chronicles or Samuel’s books will paint the life of a man necessarily clinging to the mercy of God to save his lungs. No detail of his story is included for entertainment or speculation, but was kept in the records of Holy writ by the kindness of the Author of David’s salvation to bear witness to the goodness of God committed to those saved and sealed by covenantal love. The righteousness imputed to Adam, to David, and to we who confess the Name of the LORD, came at no petty cost and will be eternally kept the same. The surety of this covenantal good given to those in Christ was David’s only confidence—it infused his days, his prayers, and his songs. He knew he didn’t deserve to sing of the goodness of the LORD in and of himself.

But he knew the One who made that covenant, so he sang anyway.


Stephanie Quick is a writer and producer serving with Frontier Alliance International in the Middle East. She is the author of To Trace a Rising Sun and can be found on on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Sign up for her ministry updates here and receive a free copy of her book Confronting Unbelief. She can be reached at stephanie@stephaniequick.org.


[1]  Psalm 37:25
[2]  Genesis 3:7
[3]  I Samuel 30
[4]  I Timothy 6:16
[5]  Joshua 5:13-15
[6]  Romans 3:19
[7]  Romans 6:23
[8]  Psalm 89:14; John 14:6