Psalm 91 is one of the most often quoted passages in the Bible, with good reason. It speaks of the unique rights, privileges, blessings, and rewards that are bestowed upon those who have a vibrant, personal, intimate relationship with God. Unfortunately, too many Christians settle for a shallow, superficial relationship with the Lord. They don’t make prayer or Bible reading a priority, and they focus on pleasing themselves and others, rather than on pleasing God. Yet when they are in trouble, they call on the Lord for help, and wonder why their prayers go unanswered. Jesus spoke about the importance of His followers "abiding" in Him. He promised that those who have a deeply personal relationship with Him would be rewarded with a fruitful, abundant life, and answered prayer. (John 15:5-7) Let’s look at some of the ways that Psalm 91 describes this "abiding life."
Psalm 91:1-2 (NKJV) says: "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.’" Those who "dwell" or "abide" in God—loving Him, seeking Him, and serving Him with all their hearts on a consistent basis—are kept in a "secret place" under His divine protection and care. They not only say that they trust in their God, but they prove it by their actions. When these believers are in trouble, or when they just need direction for their lives, God is the first One they turn to. He is never a second thought, or a last resort. Verses 3-6 describe every kind of attack that could possibly come against God’s people, and reassures them of His shielding power.
Psalm 91:7-8 (NIV) says: "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." In other words, there can be chaos, destruction, and fear all around the Lord’s devoted ones, but they will remain sheltered and safe in His secret place, as mere observers of the punishment of God’s enemies. The next few verses reveal one of the means the Lord uses to protect and help His followers. "If you make the Most High your dwelling—even the Lord, who is my refuge—then no harm will befall 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." (v. 9-12 NIV) God offers His people angelic protection as they face a hostile and dangerous world.
Verse 13 of Psalm 91 (NIV) says: "You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot." Here, God promises His beloved supernatural power over their spiritual enemies—Satan and his dark forces. This is confirmed by Christ Himself when He says: "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." (Luke 10:19 NKJV) Perhaps the most powerful of all of the verses of Psalm 91 are those spoken by the Most High God Himself. "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." (v. 14-16 NKJV) Here, the Lord promises His most faithful and devoted ones deliverance, protection, answered prayer, honor, long life, and His divine presence.
If you have professed Christ as your Savior, then you can be as close to God as you want to be. But know that it will involve total commitment, surrender, and a heart that is wholly devoted to God. Today, enter in to His secret place, and receive all that belongs to you in Christ!
Prayer: Lord, I ask that You never allow me to settle for less than a deeply personal relationship with you. Give me a heart that will love You, seek You, and serve You the way You desire and deserve. Thank You for all of the promises of Scripture that will be mine as I abide and dwell in You!
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