Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Psalm 121 - One of the MOST Comforting Psalms of All




The second of the 15 Psalms of Ascent is packed with assurance for you of how closely and thoroughly God watches over you. Here are the promises: 1) He will not let your foot slip. 2) He watches over you without pause. 3) He will keep you from harm. 4) He will watch over your life now and forever. Of course there is much more poetry to the verses, but essentially this psalm of comfort and reassurance sings a hopeful declaration, a guarantee, in fact, that the Maker of heaven and earth is your constant helper.

Looking at these verses from our self-centered perspective though puts some obligation on us. We have a bit to do, too. The first verse says, “I will lift up my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from?” Most translations (I checked over 20) leave the final phrase as a question, but the old King James version (and a couple others) interpret that verse as: “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.” Regardless as to whether that was intended as a question or a statement the author of this psalm, King David, knew the answer and revealed it concretely in the next verse. We have the same obligation, first to lift our eyes, that is to make a decision to seek out help, and second to know where to look. Lifting your eyes also hints that there is an expectation, i.e. that you are looking in the right direction for that help.

The second verse says, “My help comes from the LORD (Yahweh), Who made heaven and earth.” Thank you, King David, for making that statement free from ambiguity, doubt, or vagueness. Now read the entire psalm and be comforted.
Psalm 121
A song of ascents.
I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
    where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip—
    he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
    will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord watches over you—
    the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
    nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all harm—
    he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
    both now and forevermore.