Psalm 20 is a pre-battle order of service, a kind of call and response a declaration that the battle belongs to the LORD. We can imagine the armies of Israel lined up ready, David at the head.
David is experienced trusting God, he’d always been aware whether fighting for his sheep against a bear or against Goliath or as he took Jerusalem by climbing up through the water pipes or lay hidden in the cave whilst Saul came in to use it as a toilet...that the Battle belongs to the LORD and it is God who arms him (and us) with strength and trains us for battle, as he says in Psalm 18.
The call and response nature of the Psalm demands participation in these words of devotion and trust, man turning to his neighbour (his brother in arms) to pass on to him the blessings of verses 1-5. So they are speaking over each other words given to David by God himself that means they speak to each other the words of God Himself! And we all know what God’s words can do..... What worlds His word creates! We need to do more of this declaration to each other for encouragement. Speak God’s truth and promises to each other, to our brothers and sisters in arms as we daily go out into battle.
This knowledge of God being our rescuer and the one who fights for us is shared with every soldier in the army as each one takes part in this liturgy of dependence and acknowledgment of who God is. David’s experience is shared and the declared by those who were about to fight, they may well have been well trained, they may well have been sitting upon the horses or about to drive the chariots of verse 7 and yet everyone had to speak out a trust in God’s saving power not in the equipment of war or the plans and strategies of people.
What a way to make a beginning! What a way to continue a plan.
So in so many ways Psalms are different to much of the Bible, they aren’t accounts, they aren’t closely argued theological epistles, instead they are declarations whether of trust or pain, depression or thanksgiving, they are a telling out of the writers’ different states and feelings, but also always a telling out of who God is and what He does. They do not seek to persuade us, simply to declare truth about God in every circumstance and truth about what God does for those who trust and follow Him.
Who can you speak God’s transformational words over today?