God is Alive and
An EasyEnglish Translation with Notes (about 1200 word
vocabulary) on Psalm 18
Words in boxes are from the Bible. Words in brackets, ( ), are
not in the Hebrew Bible.
Peter got out of the boat. He walked on the sea towards Jesus.
But then Peter saw that the sea was very angry. Peter became very frightened.
He began to fall into the water. He shouted, "Save me, Lord".
Immediately, Jesus put out his hand. He held on to Peter. They both climbed
into the boat. The storm came to an end. (Part of
The story of Psalm 18
This is a very special psalm. It is so special that you will find
it in 2 places in the Bible. It is here in the Book of Psalms. It is also in a
part of the Bible that we call the Book of Samuel. Samuel is in 2 parts. I
Samuel tells the story of David before he became king
of Israel. 2 Samuel tells us the story of David after he became king. 1 Samuel
also tells us about the lives of Samuel the prophet and Saul the king. Why is
Psalm 18 in the Book of Samuel? (2 Samuel 22) Because it is David's own story
of his life. Here we have put it in 6 parts. This gives help to everyone that
reads it. It is like 6 different psalms. We can study it like that. But we must
read the whole psalm to understand the life of David..
That is why it is also in 2 Samuel. The title (in brackets) of each part is not
in the Hebrew Bible.
(This is) for the music
(It is) for the servant of the LORD.
(It is) for David.
David spoke the words of this song.
David did this when the LORD saved David from his enemies.
Also, when the LORD saved David from Saul.
(Part 1: God is a Rock for
v1 I will love you,
I am strong.
v2 The LORD is my
rock and my fortress.
He gives me help.
God is my rock.
I run and hide in his shadow.
He is my shield.
He is the one that saves me.
He is my high tower.
v3 The LORD is someone
that I must praise.
He will save me from my
(Part 2: David asks for
v4 Death was all
God's enemies were following
v5 Sheol was tying me down.
Death was catching me.
v6 In my trouble I
prayed to the LORD.
I shouted to my God for help.
He heard my voice from his
My words went into his ears.
(Part 3: God answers
v7 So, the earth
moved and shook.
The foundations of the
They moved because God was
v8 Smoke rose from
Burning fire came from his
Burning coals shot out from
v9 God opened the
heavens and came down.
Dark clouds were under his
v10 He sat on a cherub and he
God flew in the arms of the
v11 God covered himself with
He was in the dark waters and
clouds in the skies.
v12 It was very bright where God
Out of the clouds came hail
v13 The LORD sent thunder from the
People heard the voice of the
There was hail and there was
v14 (The LORD) shot his arrows
He made his enemies very
He sent a lot of lightning
and he beat his enemies.
v15 People saw how deep the sea
They saw the foundations of
This was because God blew on
them through his nose.
v16 (The LORD) came down to me.
He held me.
He took me out from deep
v17 He saved me from my powerful
He saved me from people that
They were too strong for me.
v18 It was a bad day for me when
I met them.
But the LORD gave me help.
v19 He led me out to a wide
He saved me because he found
pleasure in me.
(Part 4: Why God gives
help to people)
v20 - v21 The LORD did this
- I am righteous
- my hands are
- I obeyed the
rules of the LORD
- I did no evil
- I did not turn
away from God
v22 Really, all his rules are in
front of me.
I did not turn away from them
v23 I did nothing wrong before
I did no sin.
v24 (The LORD) made me righteous.
My hands are clean when he
looks at me.
v25 To people that are kind, you
(God) are kind.
To people that do nothing
wrong, you do nothing wrong.
v26 To people that are clean, you
To people that turn away from
you, you turn away from them.
v27 You will save humble people.
You will not save people
unless they are humble.
(Part 5: Everything that
David owns comes from God)
v28 LORD, you make my light burn
My God is my light in the
v29 Really, in you I run up to a
troop (of soldiers).
In my God
I can jump over a wall.
v30 The way of God is perfect.
The word of the LORD is true.
He is a shield for everyone
that hides in him.
v31 Because who is God? Only the
Who is a rock? Only our God!
v32 It is in God that I am strong.
He makes my way perfect.
v33 He makes my feet like the
feet of a goat.
I do not fall on the hills.
v34 He teaches my hands to fight.
My arms can bend a metal bow.
v35 (God) you made me into a
You bent down (to earth). You
made me great.
v36 You made me take long steps.
My ankles did not turn.
v37 I ran after my enemies. I
I did not turn back until I
had killed them.
v38 I knocked them down. They did
not get up again.
They fell beneath my feet.
v39 You made me strong for
You made my enemies bend in
front of me.
v40 You gave their necks to me.
I destroyed my enemies.
v41 They cried for help but
nobody saved them.
They cried to the LORD but he
did not answer.
v42 I cut them into small pieces
in the wind.
I put them on the streets as
(Part 6: God made David
v43 You saved me from the people
that attacked me.
You made me the leader of the
I even rule people that I do
v44 When they hear about me they
Foreign people are afraid of
v45 They will not fight me.
They do not hide in their
v46 The LORD is alive. Praise my
Lift high the God that saves
v47 He is the God that fights for
He makes the nations obey me.
v48 He saves me from my enemies.
You lifted me above those
You saved me from angry men.
v49 LORD, I will praise you in
all the nations.
I will praise your name with
v50 (The LORD) will give his king
He will always show kindness
to his Messiah, to David.
He will show kindness to his
tower ~ a high part of a fortress
shook ~ moved from side to side very fast
cherub ~ a servant of God that we cannot see: an angel
hail ~ rain made of ice
lightning ~ bright line of light in the sky in a storm
held ~ past tense of hold; fasten your hand on something
humble ~ people who think that they are not important
troop ~ a group of soldiers
perfect ~ as good as possible
What Psalm 18 means
Psalm 18 describes in pictures how God works. David did not see
God. David only saw how God gave him help. Here are some examples:
David called God a rock. God was not really a rock. But when David
needed help, God led David to a rock. David hid from his enemies behind the
rock. So, David thought that God and the rock did the same job. When David saw
a rock he remembered God! Can you think of other ways
that rocks make us remember God?
God sent a bad storm to the enemies of David. There was rain,
wind, clouds, hail, thunder and lightning. To David God was in the storm. God
was enjoying it. The thunder was like God speaking. The storm obeyed God and it
destroyed the enemies of David. So, when David saw a storm he remembered God.
Can you think of another storm that obeyed God?
When David ran in the hills he did not fall. He was as good as a
wild animal. His feet were like the feet of a goat. Really
the animal in the psalm was a deer. A deer is like a small cow. It runs very
fast and does not fall. David believed that God gave him feet as good as the
feet of the deer. You will find other examples in the psalm. Make your own
list. Put on it examples from other psalms. Put on it everything that makes you
God is a Rock for David
Verse 2: David calls God many different names to show what
God is like. David hid from his enemies in the woods and fields and hills. He
hid behind rocks and on the tops of hills. They were like fortresses. They were
like the high towers that soldiers made. David said that they were like the
shields that soldiers hid behind. They all made David
David asks for Help
Verses 4 – 5: David had many enemies. There was Saul and the
friends of Goliath and Cush. (You can read about Cush in Psalm 7.) There were many others, even David's own
son Absalom. They all wanted to kill David. This made David feel like a
drowning man. He thought that he would soon be in Sheol.
So he asked God for help.
God answers David
Verse 7: God gave David help by sending an earthquake.
This is when the earth moves and breaks. Buildings fall down.
Verses 8 – 14: God gave David help by sending a great
storm. The home of God is in heaven. The Jews believed that heaven was above
the sky. David thought that the storm was God coming down to earth. God made
Verse 15: The earthquake and the storm were so bad that
under the mountains
under the sea
Verses 16 – 19: God used earthquakes and storms to give
help to David. God saved David from danger. God put David in a safe place.
Why God gives Help to his
Verse 24: This is the most important part of the psalm for
Christians. What happens when we become Christians? Psalm 18:24 tells us. God
makes us righteous. This means that we are clean when God looks at us and that
we are his friends as well. See below, after 'Something to do'.
Verses 20 – 23: When we are Christians
we must become like this. God sees that we are clean. Now we must show everybody
Everything that David has
comes from God
Verse 29: The wall is probably the wall of Jerusalem.
David and his soldiers fought the troop inside Jerusalem. David won.
Verse 34: David was very strong to bend a metal bow.
Verse 36: This is because David has feet that can run like
a wild animal.
Verse 40: Hundreds of years ago, men put their feet on the
necks of people that they beat.
God made David King
Verse 50: Messiah in the psalm means David. To Christians
it means Jesus. Nathan told David that God would always be kind to David and to
his children. Nathan was a prophet like Samuel. David's children were the kings
that came later. The last one was (and still is) Jesus.
Something to do
1. How many names for God can you find
in Psalm 18?
2. Study Psalm 18:20-27. Why does God
turn away some people?
3. Remember the words of Jesus: Not
everyone that calls me Lord will go to heaven. Only those that obey my Father
(God). (Matthew 7:21)
The word RIGHTEOUS
This is a difficult word to understand. In the Bible
it means 4 things. The context usually tells us what it means. The context is
the verses before and after it in the Bible.
Here are the 4 things that it means:
1. It tells us about God. It means that
he has never done anything that is wrong. He has never broken his own rules. He
has always done what is right.
2. Even though only God is really righteous, he calls his friends righteous. It does
not mean that they are good. It means that they have asked God to forgive them.
The word "forgive" means "to give away". God gives away all
the sin of the people that he forgives to Jesus. Jesus takes it away. This
happened when Jesus died on the Cross at Calvary. By some strange way that we cannot
understand, Jesus took our sins away. Our sins are the things that we do that
are wrong, the things that we do that do not obey God's rules. When Jesus died,
he took away the sins of the people that lived before him and that lived after
him. That includes us ... if we ask!
3. The people that God forgives usually
try to obey God. They do what he tells them to do. This is also called
"being righteous" in the Bible. When they fail, they pray again,
"God, forgive me". God will always forgive us when we ask him.
4. In the Old Testament, the Jews tried
to obey the TORAH. This was all the rules in the Old Testament. Most of
them were in the first 5 books of the Bible. The Jews called them the Torah.
Later, other books like Isaiah and Jeremiah were also called
Torah. Jews that kept these rules were called
"righteous". This meaning of the word is not important for Christians
today. They are righteous for reasons 2 and 3.
Righteous people have what the Bible calls RIGHTEOUSNESS.
It means that they have asked God to forgive them. It does not mean that they
are very good. It means that they are friends of Jesus, because they have asked
him to take away their sin.
© 2001, Wycliffe
This publication is written in EasyEnglish Level A (1200 words)
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