David's Owning Of, and Application To, God
Psalm 63:1-11
O God, you are my God; early will I seek you: my soul thirsts for you, my flesh longs for you in a dry and thirsty land…

I. HIS OWNING OF GOD. "O God, thou art my God." This was a good beginning, and a very fair preface to that which follows after. And it is that, indeed, which lays a foundation to all the rest. It is that which must be necessarily premised in all our addresses to God, and petitions for anything from Him.

1. It is an expression of faith. David calls God his God, as having taken Him so to be to him. God is in a common and general sense the God of all men, as He is said to be the Saviour of all men (1 Timothy 4:10). Namely, in regard of common and general blessings which He bestows upon them, of Creation and Providence. But for believers, and those which are His children, as the prophet David here was, He is their God more especially, in a more peculiar manner, above any besides; He is to them a God in covenant, engaging Himself to them, to do them good, and to provide graciously for them. And they call Him their God thus, and with this emphasis upon it.

(1) The benefit of it is very great; yea, in effect all things else. To say, God is ours, is to say, The whole world is ours, and a great deal more; it is to give us title to everything which may be requisite or convenient for us. Whatever we can desire or stand in need of, it is all wrapt up in this, "Thou art my God."(2) It is an hard thing, too, it is a matter of difficulty. There are two states and conditions in which it is very difficult to say, "O God, thou art my God"; the one is the state of nature and unregeneracy; and the other is the state of desertion, and the hiding of God's face from the soul.

2. It is an expression also of obedience and self-resignation. Those whom God is a God to, He does bestow special favours upon them; and those to whom God is a God, they do return special services to Him; which is here now considerable of us. And so we shall find it to be all along in Scripture (Psalm 118:28).


1. His resolution, what he would do, "Early will I seek Thee." He promises to seek after God, and to do it betimes, which is an enlargement of it; where, while he signifies his own purpose, he does likewise signify our duty; while he tells us what shall be done by him, he tells us also what is to be done by us, namely, to seek the Lord early; not only to seek Him, but to be forward in our seeking of Him.

(1) Early as to the time of the day. Early, that is, in the morning. We should give God the first of our thoughts every day.

(2) Early, as to the time of our life, in the morning of our age. For men to defer their repentance and reformation to their old age, and when they have spent all their time before in the pursuit of their lusts, to think to seek God then, and that will be time enough; — that's but a vain conceit and imagination in them.

(3) Early as to the time of God's judgments, and providential dispensations. We must seek Him early, that is, before He fetches us to Him, and compels us, as it were, to the seeking of Him. It is better in regard of piety, and it is better in regard of safety. It is more ingenuity in us in respect of God, and it is more wisdom in us in respect of ourselves. For hereby we save both Him and ourselves a great deal of labour, which otherwise He is put unto with us; and we may escape a great deal of smart which otherwise through our own wilful-nose and neglect happens unto us.

2. His intimation of the state and temper which he was now in, or the ground and reason of his resolution.

(1) The object of his desire was God Himself. As he is in a state of darkness, so he longs for God in the clearer evidence and more comfortable assurance of His favour and good-will towards him. As he is in a state of weakness, so he thirsts for God in She impartment of more of His grace, and strength, and assistance to him. As he is in a state of strangeness, some kind of distance and alienation from God; so he does also long for Him in the intercourse of communion with Him.

(2) The intention of his desire. His own necessities, and the sense and apprehension of them. This puts him upon this desire. A good Christian hath so much need of God, as that he cannot be well satisfied without Him. The amiableness of the object does provoke and excite the desire. God being so exceedingly lovely and admirable, as indeed He is in His own nature, it cannot but draw on those which do discern it, very much to desire it; and there's experience also in it which does promote it, and help it on.

3. The subject of the desire, which is here signified to be the soul and the flesh; hit soul properly, his flesh by way of sympathy with it; they are both of them in it.

(1) In the midst of any outward and temporal deficiencies, we should consider and reflect upon our spiritual.

(2) The best way to correct and qualify our desires as to temporals, is to fasten them upon spirituals. When we would restrain any inordinate longing for some outward or earthly accommodation, or suppress any grief, either of the like nature, we cannot better do it, than by provoking ourselves to the desire of spiritual comforts. This helps, first, by way of diversion, and turning the stream of the affections another way, and so breaking off the violence of it, that it prevails not upon us. And then further, there is that also in spirituals which does supply and make amends to us for any temporal deficiency.

(T. Horton, D. D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: {A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah.} O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;

WEB: God, you are my God. I will earnestly seek you. My soul thirsts for you. My flesh longs for you, in a dry and weary land, where there is no water.

David's Desire for God's Presence
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