Why did God hide his face from David? (Psalm 30:7) Lord, when you favored me, you made my royal mountain stand firm; but when you hid your face, I was dismayed.
ESV - 7 By your favor, O Lord, you made my mountain stand strong; you hid your face; I was dismayed.
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Why did God hide His face from David? (Psalm 30:7) Did God really hide His face from David, or is it that David only felt that way? Maybe David felt that way because he foolishly numbered the people (2 Sam 24). Or maybe it was his sin of committing adultery with Bathsheba, impregnating her and murdering her husband Uriah in an attempt to cover it all up (2 Sam 11). Or was it because he intended to kill every man of Nabal's household when he was disrespected by Nabal the fool? God had to use Nabal's wife Abigail to keep David from going through with what was in his heart (revenge)(1 Sam 25). If David was like me, it would be all of the above and then some more. "Hid your face" is a figurative expression, God hasn't actually exposed His face to anyone at any time. David feels as if God has turned away from him; that God is withholding His presence from him. I think it only feels that way to David. I don't think God hides from us. Who among us who have gotten into a close relationship with the Lord, similar to what David had, hasn't felt the same as David, that God has left us because of something we've done? If God did hide Himself from us because of our sin He'd never come out of hiding. David asked God, "Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble"? (Psalm 10:1). Is it true that God hides Himself from us when we're in trouble? NO! This is just how David felt when he was calling out to God and he had to wait on God to rescue him. This is very normal. It's also normal to accuse God of such. (What I don't understand, is how such accusations stick. David writes how he's feeling toward God at a certain time in a song, and it's interpreted as divine fact. David says 'God hid from me,' and the christian community puts it out that God hides. That's not how the scriptures are to be learned). He asks God to "Hide your face from my sins" in Psalm 51:9; so which is it? Does he want God to hide His face or not? Psalm 32, another psalm of David, tells us who hides from whom. David says "When I kept silent my bones wasted away.." (vs 3) "I acknowledged my sin.. I said 'I will confess..' and you forgave the iniquity of my sin." (vs 5) Why was David keeping silent? Why do we? I think we do all of the hiding. Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to You at a time when You may be found (vs 6). That's the answer, I think. I think prayer searches God out; not that He was actually hiding.
In my opinion, the reference in this psalm is to David having incurred God's anger by pridefully ordering a census to be taken of Israel, against the advice of his army commander Joab (as recounted in 2 Samuel 24). As a result, God sent three days of pestilence on the land that killed 70,000 people.
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