Prepare to listen. Quietly pause and prepare to receive the Word, believing God’s words, When they call to me, I will answer them; I will be with them in trouble, I will rescue them and honor them. (Psalm 91:15)
Read Psalm 91:1-2; 9-16
1You who live in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
2will say to the LORD, ‘My refuge and my fortress;
my God, in whom I trust.’
9Because you have made the LORD your refuge,
the Most High your dwelling-place,
10no evil shall befall you,
no scourge come near your tent.
11For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways.
12On their hands they will bear you up,
so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.
13You will tread on the lion and the adder,
the young lion and the serpent you will trample under foot.
14Those who love me, I will deliver;
I will protect those who know my name.
15When they call to me, I will answer them;
I will be with them in trouble,
I will rescue them and honour them.
16With long life I will satisfy them,
and show them my salvation.
One of the things I love about the psalter is its honest assessment of life. It takes us through times when things are bad, and the psalmist is uncertain about God and life in general and gets brutally honest in complaint and lament. But it also takes us through times when life is good, and the psalmist is in a place of certainty about God and life and thus makes grand claims, sometimes even a little exaggerated, about what God will do for those who love him. Psalm 91 is from this place of certainty and does exaggerate a little in its metaphors. It’s unlikely that we’ll ever tread on a literal lion or adder, but they may symbolize something scary or bad that we have experienced. The point isn’t to interpret literally, but instead to hear the enthusiasm of the psalmist for the Most High God. There is a love-relationship between the pray-er and the LORD, a relationship built on the certainty of God’s willingness to intervene for those who love him. Thus, the psalm ends with the voice of Yahweh (vv 14-16) speaking to the pray-er. Six times Yahweh promises, ‘I will…,’ and all of them are reassuring promises. But they are for ‘Those who love me.’
Make a list of the 6 promises God makes to those who love him and let them be your assurance for today, no matter what your situation, good or bad.
Respond to Yahweh in prayer
Lord God, life has its ups and downs and I’m grateful today for your six promises. May I love you more dearly as I journey through Lent this season. Amen.
Go and live obediently in the world, assured of God’s promises.
Reading the Bible has always been essential to followers of Jesus. I've been reading, studying, teaching and writing reflections on biblical texts for as long as I can remember. I invite you to read the Bible with me during the Lent and into Easter Sunday.