Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Dwelling with Lord
Psalm 91
‘Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.’ ( 91:1)
 The author of Psalm 91 is not revealed in it akin to other Psalms. It can be assumed that it may be the thoughts and prayers of Moses since the Psalm 90 and Psalm 91 have the same prayers. It appears that Jesus knew this Psalm since He quoted words from it when Satan tried to tempt him, which is given in Matthew 4:11. Temptation is an act where one forces another one to do something which the other person does not want to do or intend to do. Jesus might have thought about this Psalm in order to take refuge under the shadow of His Father, he Almighty God, when Satan tempted Jesus to do things which He does not want to do at all.

Theologians divide this Psalm as if three people are speaking: a priest who speaks verses 1, 3 - 8 and 9b – 13, someone praying to God in verses 2 and 9a, and finally God himself speaks in verses 14 - 16. There are 4 names attributed for God in the first 2 verses of this Psalm: Most High, Almighty, LORD and God. Some of these names are repeated again and again in later verses. Similarly, they are 4 different words in the Hebrew Bible. Hebrew is the language that the Jews spoke when these Psalms were written. Jews are the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their children including Jesus, who was a Jew and belong to the family of David. These 4 names means God is more important than anyone else, God is more powerful than anyone else, that he will never die, and he decides what will happen to his people.

These verses tell us not to be afraid if we trust in God so that He will protect us from illness and evil spirits. If we trust in God, He will always protect us from evil things by being on our side (verse 7) and in verse 9 says the Most High is our home, where we are safe. In the following verses the author of Psalm describes about angels who are here in this earth to protect us from any evil spirits and guard us from all temptations and trials.

The one who by faith chose God for his protection or refuge is like a person who stays in the shadow to escape from the extreme heat of the sun. The creation takes refuge under the wings and shadow of the creator. Our life is protected by divine grace from the temptations of Satan. We need faith in the Almighty to take refuge as Psalmist says in these verses. Without faith nothing is possible and faith sustains us through all dangers of this world.

The Lord is our protector and refuge, whom we can safely depend on. Whatever happens, nothing shall hurt a believer even if he has to walk through the valley of death. There are trials and temptations in our daily life, but if we seek refuge in God, He shall protect us and deliver us from all dangers. Faith sustains us to live for tomorrow and to overcome the trials and temptations of this world.

Prayer: Lord, Almighty, protect us and guard us from the evils of this world by taking refuge under your wings. 

Thought for the Day: ‘A faithful person lives under the wings of God Almighty, who protect him from all evils.’
Lal Varghese, Texas