Pleasant Places

The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup;

    you hold my lot.

The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;

    indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

I bless the LORD who gives me counsel;

    in the night also my heart instructs me.

I have set the LORD always before me;

    because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.

therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;

    my flesh also dwells secure.

For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,

    or let your holy one see corruption.

You make known to me the path of life;

    in your presence there is fullness of joy;

    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:5-11


16:5-6: The psalm now describes the psalmist’s satisfaction with the Lord and his provision…the song promotes contentment with the arrangements of one’s life, seeing them as providentially ordered.

16:7-8: God’s presence, in which the psalmist delights, is seen in the moral instruction he receives, and it results in his assurance of stability…likewise to set the LORD always before me expresses intention.

16:9-11: here there is a clear affirmation that the human yearning to be near God and to know the pleasure of his welcome forever, beyond the death of the body, finds its answer in the covenant…hope of everlasting glory for the faithful, with the resurrection of Jesus (the holy one par excellence) as the first step in bringing this hope to fruition.

16:11: A master metaphor of the bible: the covenant provides a “path” by which one walks to life in all its fullness; this is what the Lord makes known to his followers. To enjoy God’s presence, or his face, is the fruition of the covenant. The word pleasures is related to “pleasant places”; the pleasure that he has begun in this life will continue into its fullness in the world to come.

– ESV Study Bible on Psalm 16


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