Feed on His Faithfulness

Reading over Psalm 37, which has some very familiar verses like “Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart,” I noticed something I had not seen before. Verse 3: Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.”

Let’s back up to the beginning. We are told in verse one “Do not fret…” Though the verse speaks of fretting because of evildoers, I’d like to think that fretting over anything is not helpful. Then in verse 3 we are told to trust in the LORD, and do good. Trusting is only possible if we are not fretting. And if we are trusting, we are set free to do the good things He has prepared for us. Okay. Got it.

1. Don’t fret.

2. Trust in the LORD.

3. Do good.

Now the rest of verse 3: “Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.” Where has He put us?  In His land. We are to live in His presence, under His blessing. And eat. We receive what He gives us, which is His faithfulness. We are to feed on it. We live in His pasture, feeding on His faithfulness. Trusting Him. Feeding on His faithfulness means that we are constantly nourished by His incomparable, unfailing, infinite, everlasting faithfulness. He keeps covenant with us; He fulfills His promises; He forgives. So here’s the short form:

5. Dwell in the land

6. Feed on His faithfulness

In this context, we can move on to verse 4. “Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” If we are dwelling in the land, and feeding on His goodness and faithfulness toward us, we are living in the land of plenty. We enjoy ourselves in Him. We are delighted to be “sheep of His pasture”;  we are pleased to be His people. Our hearts’ desires will be found in Him. He will give us all those things we long for most.

7. Delight in the LORD

8. And He shall give…

Verse 5 tells us to “Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him,And He shall bring it to pass.” And we end up at the beginning. Rather than fretting, we commit our way to the Lord. We trust Him. We feed on His faithfulness. And He brings it to pass.

9. Commit your way to the Lord.

10. Trust also in Him.

11. He shall bring it to pass.

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10 thoughts on “Feed on His Faithfulness

  1. This is great stuff, Nancy… if I am sitting in my comfy chair with my hot cup of coffee- perfect temp. the right amount of milk.

    Laid out here in this post, not fretting looks like a piece of cake, a stroll in the park, a warm mug of coffee. This parsing falls way short when I am really in the thick of a real trial- when my child is close to death, needing surgery, it is winter and the mountain pass to the hospital is closed due to an avalanche (Feb. 2011).

    True, true, do not fret. But, and this is an important but, But God is dangerous in His love. He is faithful but His faithfulness sometimes looks like abandonment. And I fret.

    Trust in Him, for sure, but be ready for God to work His will not my easier cheerful path.

    So, if I do fret- and I will fret- God knows my weakness, He knows I am so prone to fear. I can go to Him and tell Him that my fears go so deep that I am losing faith. And He will be faithful.

    And His faithfulness will not always look like I want it to, but I will trust in the God of my salvation after He has picked me up from my fretting.

  2. This Psalm is one of my favorites! It is often a staple in my time with the Lord. Jesus must have loved this Psalm too, because he used a portion of it in His beatitudes!

  3. Amen!

    Interestingly enough, there is a wide variation of translations of the verse:

    NKJV/ASV- “and feed on His faithfulness”
    KJV- “and verily thou shalt be fed”
    ESV- “and befriend faithfulness” Note: Or and feed on faithfulness, or and find safe pasture
    GNT- “and be safe”
    HCSB- “and live securely” Note: Or and cultivate faithfulness
    NASB- “and cultivate faithfulness” Note: Or feed securely or feed on His faithfulness.
    NCV/a version CH Spurgeon cites- “and feed on truth”
    NIV- “and enjoy safe pasture”
    NLT- “and prosper”

  4. Terri, that was a dead on post. You are so right! It’s easy to not fret in our comfy chair with our hot coffee. But we live in a fallen world and our loved ones get sick and bad things happen to the ones we love. I think what is important is that as believers no matter what happens here we will be with the Lord for eternity. Whatever horrors befall us we will spend eternity with our Creator! I have no doubt those who are with the Lord would say that whatever they went through on this earth was worth it to spend eternity with our Heavenly Father. God bless you. God is faithful!

  5. Is it wrong to think that the rest of the psalm talks about what to do and the realities to keep in mind in order to avoid fretting and delight ourselves in the Lord? It culminates in the lovely, powerful verses:

    The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble. The Lord helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him. –ESV

    Thank you for this. This week may have its challenges, but I feed on the faithfulness of the living God.

  6. It seems to me that much of my fretting is over my sin, which compounds my sin. His faithfulness is revealed primarily in covering my sin — harsh words, a cherished grudge, loving the things in the world to the loss of things not of this world — for example, mentally redecorating my living room during the sermon, online shopping in the hour of peace before everyone wakes up, my nightly solitaire game that saps the last strength of the day when there is much to bring to Him. The gospel enters at point 2 and cleanses my conscience so that I can “do good.” It draws me into the greener, more juicy grass that grows by the still waters. I notice the possessive pronoun is “His.” The faithfulness belongs to Him.
    What also strikes me is that the delighting precedes the satisfying of heart hunger. And it does seem to me that the object of my delight so often falls short of the Lord and is not worthy of satisfaction. My heart easily fills with second-rate affections. Again, the blood brings me back by reminding me what Christ has done for me and that without Him the pasture, the grass, and the water around me don’t exist. With that in mind, I am brought to right delights. And finally it does seem to me that one the rightest delights is to advertise the pasture. So many know nothing of the pastures where we feed — to Him I commit them. May His faithfulness use even me to bring them in.

  7. The New King James Version is the only version that says,
    Feed on His Faithfulness”/// in Psalm 37… I love this verse///Praise God…and His Holy Name…

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