5 Most Famous Psalms of King David
The Book of Psalms are some of the most powerful prayers, songs and hymns in the world — seemingly having a direct pathway to the heart of God. As you prayerfully meditate on these 5 Most Famous Psalms of King David, do not forget to thank God for sending us the words of His Saints who have traveled before us; for sending His warnings by way of fraternity and love. We owe so much to our Lord; honor Him with your prayers and watch how He will touch your life with unexpected blessings.
5 Most Famous Psalms of King David
This popular psalm of David reminds us of his days as a shepherd (see 1 Sam 16:11-13).
Theme: The Lord, Shepherd and Host
Title: The Lord, the Psalmist’s Shepherd
The Lord is my Shepherd,
I will not be in need.
He lets me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters.
He restores my soul;
He guides me in the paths of righteousness
For the sake of His name.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You have anointed my head with oil;
My cup overflows.
Certainly goodness and faithfulness will follow me all the days of my life,
And my dwelling will be in the house of the Lord forever.
This prayer was written by King David as he fled from his son during Absalom’s rebellion in 985 BC (see 2 Sam 15-19)
Theme: Threatened but still trusting
Title: Morning Prayer of Trust in God
Lord, how my enemies have increased!
Many are rising up against me.
Many are saying of my soul,
“There is no salvation for him in God.” Selah
But You, Lord, are a shield around me,
My glory, and the One who lifts my head.
This song of praise, attributed to King David, reminds us of the Creation story (see Gen 1:14-19).
Theme: Divine Majesty and Human Dignity
Title: The Lord’s Glory and Mankind’s Dignity
Lord, our Lord,
How majestic is Your name in all the earth,
You who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens!
From the mouths of infants and nursing babies You have established strength
Because of Your enemies,
To do away with the enemy and the revengeful.
When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
The moon and the stars, which You have set in place;
What is man that You think of him,
And a son of man that You are concerned about him?
Yet You have made him a little lower than God,
And You crown him with glory and majesty!
This psalm was written some years earlier, after David was saved from King Saul’s death threats in 1012 BC (see 1 Sam 23:14-29 and 2 Sam 22:1-3).
The Lord is my Rock and my Fortress and my Savior,
My God, my Rock, in whom I take refuge;
My Shield and the Horn of my salvation, my Stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, Who is worthy to be praised,
And I am saved from my enemies.
This psalm of David, beginning in despair but ending in triumphant hope, is quoted by Jesus when dying on the Cross (see Matt 27:46).
Theme: A Cry of Anguish and a Song of Praise
Title: The Prayer of an Innocent Person
My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?
Far from my help are the words of my groaning.
My God, I cry out by day, but You do not answer;
And by night, but I have no rest.
Yet You are holy,
You who are enthroned upon the praises of Israel.
In You our fathers trusted;
They trusted and You rescued them.
To You they cried out and they fled to safety;
In You they trusted and were not disappointed.
Bonus: One of the oldest Psalms – A Psalm of Moses
Psalm 90 may well be one of the oldest of all the psalms. It’s attributed to Moses and may have been written just before the Exodus in 1450 BC. It looks back to the beginning of time and concludes that the people of God are suffering because of God’s wrath. It concludes by begging forgiveness and asking for God’s favor.
Title: God’s Eternity and Human Frailty
Theme: God’s Eternity and the Brevity of Human Life
Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.
Before the mountains were born
Or You gave birth to the earth and the world,
Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.
You turn mortals back into dust
And say, “Return, you sons of mankind.”
For a thousand years in Your sight
Are like yesterday when it passes by,
Or like a watch in the night.
You have swept them away like a flood, they fall asleep;
In the morning they are like grass that sprouts anew.