What should our reaction be? Panic, dismay, horror? I believe as followers of Jesus, our reaction should be the opposite of the world's reaction. We should stand out like lights in the darkness, like beacons of hope and joy in the midst of terror. Believe me that's tough to do when you have children and grandchildren you worry about.
Let me tell you what I do everyday that brings me great comfort and peace. I pray Psalm 91 over me and my family, out loud and in Jesus's name. Yet before you click away, let's look at this psalm more closely and its promises. So often we claim a promise or Scripture without fulfilling the conditions. And yes, in most cases there are conditions.
Verse 1: He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
This is the condition for the promise of protection in this Psalm, so I looked up the Hebrew meaning of some of the words.
Dwells - yashab = abide, sit, stay, remain, make one's abode.
secret place = cether Hiding place, shelter, secret place
What is the secret place of God? Obviously someone who lives there must know God intimately. You wouldn't invite just anyone to come into your home or your place of refuge or even your most secret hiding place, would you? Only your closest friends and family would be allowed there.
Hence this promise is for those who truly know and love God and "LIVE" in constant fellowship with Him. If that isn't you, then don't bother praying the prayer over your family. It won't work. We must meet God's conditions.
Yet, if you have that intimacy with God, let's look at the promises that follow:
- You will abide in God's mighty shadow
- God will be your refuge and fortress
- He will deliver you from the trap of the fowler (The fowler is someone who lays bait to trap you, hence the devil)
- God will deliver you from the deadly pestilence
- He will cover you with His feathers and keep you safe under His wings
- His truth will be a shield and buckler (hand held shield with straps)
- You won't be afraid of anything attacking at night
- You won't fear the arrows (missiles) that come during the day
- You won't fear the pestilence in the dark
- You won't fear the destruction that happens during the day
- A thousand may fall by your side and 10,000 on your right side but nothing bad will come near you or your home
Now we come to another condition.
Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place V. 9
You must make the Lord your refuge. In other words, you must trust in Him alone for your protection and salvation. Great tragedy befell the Jews over the centuries when they trusted in their military or other gods to protect them. Yes, we must do all we can physically to keep safe, but our main protection must be our faith in God.
If we do that then
- No evil shall come our way
- No plague will come near our homes
- He will assign angels to watch over us to keep us safe and on the right path
- The Angels will pick us up so we don't trip over rocks
- We will defeat our enemies the lion and cobra and young lion and serpent (the devil and his demons)
Now, my favorite part. We hear from God Himself, which is the most comforting at all.
“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
IF we have met the condition of loving God, truly loving Him, then He says right here what He will do:
- Deliver us
- Set us up on high
- Answer us when we pray
- Be with us in trouble (note we still might have troubles)
- Deliver us
- Honor us
- Give us long life
- Save us eternally.
If that doesn't get you excited, I don't know what will!
When I pray this every day I substitute the word "You", with "My family" so it covers everyone I love. I have it memorized so it's part of my daily prayer routine. Then, I go about my day and do not allow the horrifying news on the TV bother me at all.
This world is only going to get worse. The Bible predicts that. So, put on your full armor and use the Scripture and its promises to give you peace. The world is looking for peace. Let's be an example to them of the Prince of Peace!
They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord. Psalm 112:7