16th September 2018

The King’s Songbook 

“It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.”
Psalm 118:8-9 (KJV)

Ever imagined what King David would be like were he alive right now? It’s a fascinating question. Given his charismatic personality and musical gifting, it isn’t hard to imagine him onstage, playing his songs to sold-out crowds. David had the kind of powerful, artistic soul which lent itself to making incredible music, and the record he has passed down to us through the Book of Psalms is an incredible testament as to that.

How many of us have turned to those pages when we’re feeling lost, confused, or at the end of ourselves? Or perhaps when we’re simply overjoyed by the grace and blessings of our Heavenly Father? Well, we aren’t the only ones. A ‘King’ from our own era was just as fascinated with David: Elvis Presley.

The King of Rock and Roll kept a well-worn copy of the Bible filled with notes throughout the Book of Psalms. It’s no secret that Elvis battled many of his own personal and public ‘demons’, fighting addiction and the many complications of fame. Yet for all of his dark times, he turned to the pages of the Psalms for hope and inspiration. Perhaps that’s why he underlined so many of the verses like the one reproduced above. At the bottom of the page, he declared, “Trust in the Lord. Not man.” Beneath Psalm 149, he simply reminded himself to, “Sing for the glory of God.”

While this may be a surprise even to those of us familiar with the legends surrounding him, it makes more sense when you think about Elvis the man. These simple reminders anchored him to his own gospel roots. After all, his three Grammy awards were all for gospel songs. Who can forget Elvis singing “How Great Thou Art”?

That song is a wonderful reminder of how expansive and marvellous the sacrifice of Jesus really was. We know that that great act captured Elvis’ imagination. Perhaps his love for the Psalms was born out of a kinship he felt towards the King of Israel who wrote them—a similarly flawed man who also had the weight of the world on his shoulders, and a powerful gift to share. And who recognised the need to live by the daily grace and faithfulness of the living God who rules over all circumstances, even time and space.

Whatever connection Elvis felt with the Psalms, it’s a powerful reminder that the Word of God is for everyone. Rockstars and Kings, addicts and average Joe’s. All of us are human beings with many facets to our lives and stories, and all of us need the redemption of Jesus. The Good News our Lord came to share with us is that God’s forgiving love and transforming renewal in spirit is for everyone: Kings or not. 

Gracious Father, daily we need reminding and reinforcing the connection we have with you. Thank you for your scriptures which so inspire us all. In Jesus’ name we pray.

Study by Greg Williams


About the Author:
Greg Williams is Vice President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in North Carolina, USA.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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