The psalmist affirms his or her integrity as a person of God, and gives thanks for this firm foundation on which to stand.
In PsalmA psalm is a song of praise. In the Old Testament 150 psalms comprise the psalter, although some of the psalms are laments and thanksgivings. In the New Testament early Christians gathered to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. More 26, as in several others, the poet speaks of his or her “innocence” (v. 6) and asks to be redeemed in his or her “integrity” (vv. 1, 11). This confuses some readers because it seems to conflict with the Bible’s recognition that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). How can anyone claim innocence before God? It would be a mistake to understand the psalmists to be denying that they were sinners like everyone else. Psalms like this one are experiential and situational: like Job, the psalmists claim to have done nothing to deserve the particular accusation or trouble that has come upon them at this moment (Psalm 7:3-5, 9-11)–that is, they do not understand a cause and effect relationship between their actions and the present distress. Some psalms may arise from a formal trial or hearing, where the pray-er is unjustly accused (Psalm 69:4). In such situations, the psalmists rightly proclaim the unfairness of life or, as here in Psalm 26, reaffirm their fundamental trust in God and dedication to walking in God’s ways. They are confident that God has and will give them a firm place to stand when faith is threatened (v. 11). A “broad place” to stand–referring, no doubt, first to the templeThe Jerusalem temple, unlike the tabernacle, was a permanent structure, although (like the tabernacle) it was a place of worship and religious activity. On one occasion Jesus felt such activity was unacceptable and, as reported in all four Gospels, drove from the temple those engaged... More with its sheltering presence of God–becomes a frequent metaphor in the psalms for the blessingBlessing is the asking for or the giving of God's favor. Isaac was tricked into blessing Jacob instead of his firstborn Esau. At the Last Supper Jesus offered a blessing over bread and wine. To be blessed is to be favored by God. More and salvationSalvation can mean saved from something (deliverance) or for something (redemption). Paul preached that salvation comes through the death of Christ on the cross which redeemed sinners from death and for a grace-filled life. More of God in which the poet can rest secure (Psalms 18:19; 31:8; 66:12; 118:5).