Deep Waters — Planted by Water: the Psalms (Part 3)

The Neskowin Ghost Forest v
Wolfram Burner
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What can we do when our circumstances are so overwhelming that we are unable to praise God? When things get hard, is there a way to complain about them like a believer? Pastor Luke teaches from Psalm 69:1–16 in “Deep Waters,” part 3 of his 6-part series “Planted by Water (The Psalms).”

Questions for Consideration

OPEN. 1. How good a swimmer are you? When have you felt that you were in danger swimming (tired/strong current/too far out/…)?

UNPACK. 2. In the Bible, deep water is usually bad news (like with Noah in Genesis 7, or Moses in Exodus 14). What other Bible stories with deep water do you know? Is the water a good or a bad thing?

3. People’s heads average 100,000 hairs. Why would the Psalmist start (v. 4) with a gross exaggeration about how many enemies he has?

4. The Psalmist admits to wrongdoing (v. 5) but also says people hate him without cause (v. 4). Can both be true? Does it matter? How?

5. The Psalmist is concerned (v. 6) about others who trust God. When have you seen a publicly-religious figure ridiculed? (Not just church leaders; perhaps an athlete or politician.) Was the ridicule focused on the person’s behavior and character, or did it include their faith?

6. How did the Psalmist’s religious practices contribute to his trouble? (See verses 9–11.) What will his response be, according to v. 13?

7. Circle the things the Psalmist asks God to do (vv. 1, 13–16). What characteristics of God does the Psalmist base his requests upon?

APPLY. 8. After Psalm 22, Psalm 69 is the second most-quoted psalm in the New Testament. Read Psalm 22: 1–2. What do both psalms have in common? What does that suggest about the early church?

9. The Psalmist says (at least some of) his troubles are due to his faith (vv. 7–11). What has your faith cost you? Why?

10. Read John 15:18-25, where Jesus refers to verse 4. Suppose a friend told you that God generally gives Christians painless and peaceful lives. How might you answer?