“Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my refuge—no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.” – Psalm 91:9-11 (ESV)
Ever heard often about promises of guardian angels? We believe that they are watching over us although we can’t see them. Sometimes we sense God’s Spirit and presence and believe this is because of His angels watching over us. As we read this promise today, we are reminded who it is that gets this special protection. Notice that it is those who believe in the LORD, Most High. Our spelling and grammar checkers want to change the “Most High” to “Highest” but that is not really the same thing, is it? It is in the LORD Most High that we find our dwelling place and profess Him as our refuge. How do we dwell in the Most High? We do so by faith believing the promises God has given to us. So let’s remember that we live, or dwell in our LORD when we trust Him at all times – not just once in a while. We learn to trust and obey not only when things are tough but even when they are not so tough. Living in God is a constant that comes through a constant faith.
“Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble.” Psalm 119:165 (ESV)
We don’t usually think of a law as something we love but the law of God is different. When we speak of the law of God we are not thinking of more than the ten commandments, although they are a part of what God has revealed to us. We believe that our verse can be applied to the Bible where God has revealed His thoughts on many subjects. We can truly love the truths which He has made known to us in the Bible. What happens when we love God’s word? Our verse says that it gives us great peace in our hearts and minds and protects us from stumbling. The psalmist who wrote Psalm 119, includes his regard for God’s Word in every verse. Those like himself who love God’s Word and hope in Him for salvation, enjoy great peace. We do not have to be disturbed and wonder what real truth is in any situation. We know God’s Word is true and our hearts sense the peace that he gives. It is a promise for us to remember today. Great peace comes when we love the law of God, and it makes our footing is secure.
“For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10 (ESV)
These words although written by the psalmist are the Words of the LORD God. We have assurance that even when it seems like everything in our world is crashing down around us like a massive earthquake, that our Father God’s love will not fail and our promise of peace remains firmly in place. When we look at the mountains and hills we usually think of them as having been there a long time in our time frame. We don’t usually think of them as something apt to change very soon. And all that is true because of the way God created them. But even they can be moved. If the earth shakes enough. We are reminded that even in that extreme circumstance, God Himself is also here and he has been here forever – long before the mountains. He cannot be shaken and His love and his promises do not change. We can depend on His love no matter what happens in and to this world. We can trust God’s love no matter what happens in our lives. He will always love us and He will always keep his covenant of peace. Thank God today for never changing.
“Blessed be God, Who has not turned away my prayer Nor His lovingkindness from me.” Psalm 66:20 (NASB)
Perhaps there are times when we feel as if God has not heard our prayers or maybe rejected them. God always hears the prayers of those who abide in Him and love Him. As so many of the songs we have in the book of Psalms in our Bible, this is an expression by the writer about what God had done for him. Written many centuries ago we can still believe this promise and it can become our own expression of praise to God. We know that God hears and answers our prayers and even in those times when we receive an answer different than our request, we know that God has not rejected our prayer. He may have answered it in a different way than we expected or hoped, but we know it is in a way that is best for us because He loves us and he does not withhold his love from us. Our promise today is that He has not rejected our prayer, and because he loves us so much, he has given us an answer that is better for us. Let’s trust Him today and enjoy His love for us.
“Praise the Lord. Blessed are those who fear the Lord, who find great delight in his commands.” Psalm 112:1 (NIV)
“They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.” Psalm 112:7 (NIV)
There is a positive result seen in the promises of these two verses from Psalm 112. With no title to this Psalm, it is evidently a companion to Psalm 111. We consider the promises in these verses. The exhortation at the beginning of 112:1 is never given too often; our Lord is the LORD God and He always deserves praise. The exhortation is for all thoughtful persons who observe the way and manner of life that appropriately fears the Lord. God’s favor towards the God-fearing is a display of His character and encourages gracious feelings in others. We study the divine precepts while we endeavor to observe them, and we rejoice doing so. Our promises are: We will have no dread that evil tidings will come, and we will not be alarmed when they do come. If our hearts are fixed in our reliance upon God, any change in circumstances will barely affects us; our faith makes our conviction steadfast. When the worst should come to worst we rest and remain quiet, patiently, waiting for God.
Compare line by line Psalms 111 & 112 and see the greatness of God and its reflection.
“You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. ” – Psalm 73:24-25 (ESV)
Let’s take a moment and consider the first promise. We are guided by God and He does so according to His counsel which is without fault and prefect in wisdom. Understanding these verses really requires reading them in context with the whole psalm. He faces temptation and nearly slips into the evils of envious arrogance (v. 2-3). The author is in conflict inwardly (vs. 14-15) Embarrassed as to how to act, he finds deliverance from his dilemma (v.16). He ends up with this declaration. The Psalmist acknowledges that it is God who guides us and it is also God who sees to us being received in glory. He thus declares his allegiance to God. We truly have no one besides God who will guarantee, and assure our eternal future in heaven. Another promise is here in the next verse (v. 26) that God is the strength of our heart and His portion is our best possession. Hence, there is nothing on earth that should capture our desire besides God. Let’s not buck against this but instead, with Asaph, the Psalms author, let’s make the Lord God our refuge and testify of all His works (v. 28).
“Praise the Lord! How blessed is the man who fears the Lord, Who greatly delights in His commandments.” Psalm 112:1 (NASB)
“He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.” Psalm 112:7 (ESV)
The act of fearing the LORD is an emphasis throughout the Old Testament. The concept “fear of the Lord” occurs most prominently in the Old Testament’s Wisdom Literature such as our selected verse today. It is defined as the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10) or, as the responsible attitude of all humanity toward God (Ecclesiastes12:13). When it is used it conveys either devotion or dread of consequential punishment. Such a devotional attitude is both fitting and pleasing to our Lord God. We can and should fear God in both ways. When faith believers are walking in the fear of the Lord, they are also in the comfort of the Holy Spirit. Such and attitude actually give us courage from our faith so that we are not afraid when bad tidings come our way. No one likes bad news but true Christians have no need to fear any news we receive. We have been given steadfast hearts, firm and trusting in the LORD. We can actually say, if we fear the Lord God, we really have no need to fear anything else in this world ⸺we are blessed because we fear only the Lord.
“I will cry to God Most High, to God who accomplishes all things for me.” Psalm 57:2 (NASB)
Today’s passage comes from another Psalm written by David when he was hiding from King Saul in a cave in the wilderness. King Saul wanted to kill David because he was jealous of David’s popularity. David knew that God had plans for him. He could not forget that God had earlier sent the prophet Samuel to his home town to anoint him to be King of Israel. At the time he was anointed, David wasn’t much except the youngest of Jesse’s sons. So insignificant were his accomplishments that Jesse had forgotten him when Samuel had asked to see all of Jessy’s sons. Even now as he was hiding in a cave to save his life but he did not forget God’s plan for him. David knew God. He called Him the God Most High. David believed that God was able to carry out His plans so he trusted Him. God also has a purpose for each of our lives and He is big enough to carry out His plans. So, when we need His help, like David, let’s cry out to God Most High, to God who accomplishes all things for us just as He did for David.
“I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.” – Psalm 121:1-3 (ESV)
The title “Song of Ascents” identifies each of the Psalms 120–134 as a pilgrim song which was sung when the Israelites “ascended” (went up) to Jerusalem for the annual feasts. Festivals and feasts were very important annual events in Jewish life. The pilgrim-psalmist, as he contemplated his own spiritual journey while walking the roads through the hills to Jerusalem. He asked where his help came from. It was a rhetorical question framed in the song for he knew. He had found the answer to this question in the affirmation of his faith that the Lord. It was the Lord God who created heaven and earth, including those hills. God was his only Source of help. God’s people then and today are encouraged to trust the living God because He will bless them all. Verse 3 has our promise for today, and every day. God is watching over us on our journey. We need not look to anyone but Him for the help we need. He will not let our foot to slip; and He never dozes off. God takes no naps or ever go to sleep and he guards us going and coming.
“He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.” Psalm 18:19 (NIV)
Being in that spot between a rock and a hard place is not comfortable. Sometimes those predicaments lead to circumstances that are more than just not pleasant. Generally it is dark in those places as far as our trying to find an easy way out. Whether it is our job, our relationships, even a lack of job or resources these might happen in the bright of day but in our hearts we don’t perceive them so well. Many of the songs in the Bible were composed by Shephard and King David. Some are prayers when David had special need of divine help. Some are songs of praise. In this verse David praises God for delivering him from his enemies and rescuing him out of a tight spot. The words reveal a very special relationship between God and His servant. In Psalm 18 David sensed that God was happy about him, that He really loved him and was pleased with him. He wrote “God was delighted. This same relationship can be ours, too. He loves us and He is delighted when we trust Him wholly and faithfully. Let’s do that today, no matter what “spots” we find ourselves in.