Scriptures

Psalm 91

Introduction

In this psalm, the psalmist affirms that God is for His people and because of this, His people can fully trust in Him.

There is no heading for this psalm, so we don’t know who the author is, however, Jewish tradition accredits Psalms 90-100 to Moses. Other Psalms written by Moses are also found in Exodus 15, and in Deuteronomy 32.

‘Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.’ Psalm 91:1-8

Notice the use of the first and second person pronouns are alternated throughout the psalm. The psalmist proclaimed his own personal faith, and then proclaimed comfort to the people.

The psalmist begins by telling us that God is a shelter and whoever dwells in Him will find rest, Psalm 27:5 / Psalm 31:20. We find rest in the ‘shadow’ of the Almighty, that is, we find protection, comfort and care in God.

The psalmist tells us that God is their refuge and fortress, that is, God is their safe place and protector. God is their God, which tells us about their close relationship with Him, they trust Him completely.

God protects His people from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence with His feathers and places them under His wings.

Obviously God doesn’t have feathers or wings, these descriptions are used as metaphors to describe God as a bird, who shelters young chicks under his wings, Psalm 61:4. As chicks flee for safety under the wings of the hen, so we flee for the protection of God, Matthew 23:37.

God’s faithfulness will be His people’s shield and rampart, Deuteronomy 32:11, in other words, when error is spread about by false teachers, the truth of God’s word will keep us from being tossed back and forth, Ephesians 4:11-16.

With God as our refuge and shield, we have nothing to fear from anyone. God would protect His people from those who would attack in the night, and those who would fire arrows in the day, Isaiah 28:2.

He would protect His people from pestilence that stalks in the darkness, Deuteronomy 32:24, and plagues that destroy at midday. In other words, no matter what time of the day terror comes, God would protect His people.

It doesn’t matter how many came to destroy God’s people, God would protect them, even against the odds, He would protect them. While God’s protects His people, they were to observe with their own eyes, how God punishes the wicked.

‘If you say, “The LORD is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.’ Psalm 91:9-13

The psalmist now wets out the terms and conditions for a person to receive God’s protection. They have to proclaim that God is indeed their refuge and that they must chose the Most High as their dwelling place.

In other words, if they make God their only source of life, then God promises that no harm will overtake them and no disaster will come near their tent.

The psalmist now describes another aspect of God’s protection for His people, that is, His angels. His angels will guard His people, lift them up in their hands, so that they will not strike their foot against a stone. In other words, God would send His angels to protect those who are His, Hebrews 1:14.

You may recall that these promises were quoted but twisted by Satan when Jesus was being tempted on the mountain, Matthew 4:5-7 / Luke 4:9-12.

God’s protection is also seen in the lion and the cobra, that is, if they put their trust in the Lord, they would be able to do what men normally would not be able to do, that is, face lions and trample on snakes, Mark 16:18.

‘Because he loves me,” says the LORD, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honour him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.” Psalm 91:14-16

Notice that it is God Himself who is speaking here. God knows those who love Him, John 14:15 / Romans 5:5 / 1 John 4:18, and He acknowledges their names. This again speaks of a close relationship with God. Because of God’s people love form Him, God promises to rescue and protect them.

He also promises to answer His people’s prayers, when they call upon Him in times of trouble. He promises to deliver and honour His people and He promises to give them long life, Exodus 20:12 / Proverbs 3:2 / Proverbs 3:16, and salvation, that is, salvation from death, 1 Timothy 4:8.

Conclusion

The psalmist has clearly got a close relationship with God as they know God’s Name and who He is and in turn, God has a close relationship with the psalmist as He knows those who love Him by Name.

God knows each of us intimately, Luke 12:7, He knows us by Name, Isaiah 49:1, and He knows those who truly love Him, 1 Corinthians 8:3 / 1 John 4:7.

Sadly, many people profess to know God and even love Him but yet they don’t obey His will, John 14:23-24. We can’t claim to know or love God but not do His will, Matthew 7:22-23.

If want to have or maintain a close relationship with God, we must leaner to speak to Him in prayer regularly, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, acknowledging that He knows us intimately, Psalm 139:2.

If want to have or maintain a close relationship with God, we need to learn to draw closer to Him through reading and learning from His Word, 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

If want to have or maintain a close relationship with God, not only should we read and learn from His Word, but we must also learn to do what it says, James 1:22-25.

Go To Psalm 92

DAILY BIBLE VERSE

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness."

Galatians 5:22

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