September 07 2023
Today, Thursday September 07
The LORD, Our Hiding Place
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust." Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler And from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day, Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, And see the reward of the wicked. Because you have made the LORD, who is my refuge, Even the Most High, your dwelling place, No evil shall befall you, Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone. You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.
"Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation."
Psalm 91 does not have a title that would give us information on the writer of this wonderful passage of scripture that has been a source of encouragement to hundreds of generations of God’s people who are facing imminent danger in their lives. It has been called the “orphan Psalm” because the writer is anonymous.
While people are divided as to the actual human author of this Psalm, one interesting suggestion is that Moses wrote both Psalms 90 and 91, and that both are an exposition of Deuteronomy 33:27. "The eternal God is thy refuge"—that is the theme of Psalm 90. It is the psalm of the wilderness, the great psalm which contrasts the permanence of God with the mortal frailty of man. The sentence of death had been passed on Israel at Kadesh-barnea. Their sandglass of forty years was running out, but the eternal God was their refuge. "Underneath are the everlasting arms". This is the theme of Psalm 91. We can hide under the shadow of the Almighty!
One of the most interesting things about this psalm is that Satan knew it, memorized it, no doubt hated it, but employed it (in the usual distorted and devious way he ever handles the Word of truth) to try to tempt the Christ of God from the path of obedience to His God (Matthew 4:1-11). On the pinnacle of the temple Satan quoted from Psalm 91:11-12, when he tempted Jesus to cast Himself down. We need to be aware of the devil tempting us with a portion of a Scripture taken out of context in his attempt to get us to disobey the Lord. By the way, Jesus responded by also quoting Scripture and we should do the same.
Psalm 90 focused on dealing with the difficulties of life, but the emphasis in this Psalm 91 is on the dangers of life. The anonymous writer warns about hidden traps, deadly plagues, terrors at night and arrows by day, stumbling over rocks, and facing lions and snakes! These are the dangers that Israel faced in their wilderness journey. Today in our journey of life, we might not face those specific dangers, but daily we have to deal with a host of others. Such as terrorist attacks, snipers, reckless drivers, exotic new diseases like covid, and Saturday night handgun specials, road rage, home invasions, and many others. Yes, the contemporary scene may be as dangerous as the one described in this Psalm.
The saints who abide in Christ (vv. 1, 9) cannot avoid confronting unknown perils, but they can escape the evil consequences. Moses, David, and Paul, and a host of other servants of God, faced great danger in accomplishing God's will, and the Lord saw them through. However, Hebrews 11:36 cautions us that "others" were tortured and martyred, yet their faith was just as real. But generally speaking, walking with the Lord does help us to detect and avoid a great deal of trouble, and it is better to suffer in the will of God than to invite trouble by disobeying God's will (1 Peter 2:18-25).
Psalm 91 describes the elements that are involved in living the life of confidence and victory. Today we should remember to, “Set our mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For we died, and our life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then we also will appear with Him in glory” (Colossians 3:2-4).