When you read the Psalms, do you put yourself into the writer’s position and try to understand, thus relate, to what was expressed? I do. Psalm 69 is one that I just read and tried to relate to. Much limitation, however, to what I could relate with in the sentiments expressed! This is a Psalm that includes references to the Lord at various times in His life. For instance, the following verses have been used in the Gospels pertaining to something relative to the Lord’s life. Some of them are 69:4, 8 (perhaps), 9, 21, 25. This means the Psalm is Messianic. Yet, the entirety of the Psalm is not Messianic because it is clear that 69:5 would not apply.
In any case, as one reads the Psalm, he (or she) is clearly able to put self into the picture. It might read better when this is done. Consider a few of the following thoughts.
When the troubles of life pile up to such a degree that it is exceedingly difficult to keep one’s head above the water, who can’t relate to the sentiment of verse 1, “Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck” (ESV)?
Or, what about the aggravations of life because of personal failings? To walk with Christ means that one walks by a standard higher, a great deal higher, than one’s own. Yet, with this recognition, there are times when weakness creeps in and, then, it grabs hold and will not let loose. That weakness has turned into sin (James 1:13-15). So, the immediate high and/or enjoyment brings about a hard crash; but the crash was so painful that one can’t even look up to heaven to ask the Lord to forgive (cf. Luke 18:13). Have you been there? The psalmist had been. “O God, you are aware of my foolish sins; my guilt is not hidden from you. Let none who rely on you be disgraced because of me, O sovereign LORD and king! Let none who seek you be ashamed because of me, O God of Israel (69:5-6, NET)!
The writer of the Psalm appeals to the Lord of heaven to save him from the mire that he is in. Perhaps it was because of his own doing, or the evil doing of someone else. In either case, it is a painful and anguishing matter in one’s life. “Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters” (69:14, ESV).
I suppose we all crash into the mire where the pigs wallow every now and again. Sometimes that crash is the result of bad choices and, sometimes, it is because another has pounded us with their disparagements that we have a hard time even picking ourselves up. Don’t try. Let the Lord pick you up; when He does so, then you can stand firm. When we try on our own, just how firm do you think your legs are when you fight with the forces of evil in this world? RT