Ps. 56:3 can be most literally translated—In a day that I may fear, I will put my trust in You.  This verse serves as a commitment to fight fear with faith and is fulfilled in v.4.  Notice the different verb tenses in v.4—”I have trusted in God [and so] I won’t be afraid [in the day that I am tempted to fear].”  Trusting in God is the answer to every kind of man fearing.  As one author put it: “The Bible leaves us no room for debate.  The source of fear, worry and anxiety is unbelief…When we fail to believe that God is for us, will [meet our ultimate needs), has our future in his hands, and is with us right now, we cave in to fear, worry, or anxiety.”[1]

So what exactly is entailed in putting our trust in God?  We’ve cited this definition in the past from one author: “[trust is] the assured reliance upon someone or something with an emphasis on the security of that trust.”[2]. Ultimately, this is relying upon or placing ourselves in the care of God instead of in other people, man’s invented ways of dealing with problems or even in our feelings. 

When you encounter someone with this trust there is a settledness or a secure confidence in God in their words and tone, despite the outcome of their circumstance being uncertain.  And you can be certain that this trust is more specifically a reliance upon what God has said in his word.  This is why the first line of v.4 is the centerpiece of these 2 verses and literally reads—in God, his word I praise.

We know we are to trust in his word, but how about praising his word when we are fearful?  This takes it up a notch because, not only should praise flow out of our beliefs, it also is the expression of our beliefs.  Praise involves verbal testimony to God’s goodness in song or declaration.

What is the content of that praise?

-His word is to be praised because it reveals truth

Ps. 119:164 Seven times a day I praise You, Because of Your righteous ordinances.

God hasn’t left those whom he has created in the dark about who he is, his plan of salvation and what he requires from all men.  God has delivered to mankind his truth; an absolute, unchanging truth that is completely reliable.  His word graciously provides comfort, guidance and refreshment.  Do we ever stop to think of how God gives us a place to turn to in our fearful times and that we can find grace and mercy in a time of need?

No matter how many times we haven’t believed it in the past, we can come to the word to find strength and focus when we come with a humble heart. Furthermore, the fact that he even desires to be known and worshipped by sinners makes him and his word praiseworthy.  Next…

-His word is to be praised because his faithfulness is tied to it

The very context of God’s faithfulness is meaningless without his word.  When God brings something to pass that he said, it’s technically his word that is vindicated and thus his faithfulness is tied directly to what he specifically promisedPs. 106:12 [After being redeemed from Egypt] Then they believed His words; They sang His praise.  Ps. 71:22 I will also praise You with a harp, Even Your truth, O my God; To You I will sing praises with the lyre, O Holy One of Israel. 23 My lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to You; And my soul, which You have redeemed.

Once David gets to the point of praising God for his word, he knows he has trusted in God and that trust is overpowering his fears.

[1] Brian S. Borgman, Feelings and Faith, p.128.

[2] Allen P. Ross, Psalms-vol.1, p.237fn.