A Modern Woman's Perspective On The Kingdom of God on Earth

Showing posts with label Belief. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Belief. Show all posts

July 5, 2021

From 2012 to Today... A Study Of Psalm 91:7-8


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 2012, I wrote a post on these two verses of Psalm 91, and in revisiting it, I found it is even more relevant these nearly nine years later. The same questions I asked then are ones I would like to present to you today ... Do you take the words of this Scripture literally, or do you think they are figurative, or symbolic? As a Christian, do you have the courage to believe that God means this literally in His promise of protection?  Is it possible that this could mean exactly what it says, and we could miss out on the promise by doubting its veracity? I want to examine what the Holy Spirit prompted me to write nine years ago and see if there is more revelation [in light of where we are on the timeline of the final destiny of mankind].
As I look back on our recent history, the year 2012 seems to have been the harbinger for the slide into moral decay and lawlessness that now runs rampant in our nation. We saw the beginning of more intrusions in our lives with the Obama healthcare policies. The visible corruption within our national security agencies found many Americans beginning to distrust those whose job it is to protect us from enemies, foreign and domestic. Mass shootings seemed to explode across the land: Aurora, CO and the Batman movie massacre; the shootings at a Sikh Temple; the Empire State Building, and the Sandy Hook Elementary shootings all dominated the headlines.  We also saw the first big case of pedophilia hit the news cycle, when Jerry Sandusky, Penn State's former defensive coordinator, was sentenced to 60 years in prison for child sex abuse. We also saw Lance Armstrong fall from grace when he was banned from cycling for life for doping. Hurricane Sandy killed 130 people, and the nation was outraged [and still is] over the failure of those at the highest level of our government to protect and rescue the heroes of Benghazi. It was a rough year. 
So, at the time, I felt it was pertinent to ask the important question ... Do we believe what these two significant verses promise? And as we find ourselves in even more dire straits in 2021, the question is the same, and probably even more relevant. It will be very important in the coming months how you answer that question because I think it is safe to say that not everyone will benefit from these promises. Like all the other promises in Psalm 91, these two are available to all; but only those who believe what God says in His Holy Word, and hold fast to the promises within, will receive the benefits. So we must choose to believe and trust His Word!
Why is Psalm 91:7-8 more significant today? Nine years ago, we might have contemplated that the End Times were approaching. Today, I would surmise that most of us perceive we may even see the return of Christ in our lifetimes; or at least the lifetimes of our children or grandchildren. I want you to think about verse 6 that precedes the two I am pointing out today ... [You will not be afraid] of the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor of the destruction (sudden death) that lays waste at noon. We have certainly seen this prophecy fulfilled in the last year! God knew that there would be times when we would be overwhelmed with all the negative reports of life around us and in the world.  That is why He is warning us in this verse that thousands will fall around us; they will not only cave in to the doubts and worries of spiritual warfare coming against us, but could be consumed by the actual real-life events that we are experiencing (wars and rumors of wars from our foreign enemies; betrayal of our leaders; viruses and diseases; human trafficking; invasion at our borders). 
At this point we have to choose whether we will believe and trust; running to that shelter of the Most High, where He promised we would find rest (and safety) in His shadow. That's the first promise! But as I've told you before, this takes action on our part.  He offers the promises of protection, but we must choose to claim them!  Otherwise, we find ourselves, along with the rest of the world, passively accepting the consequences of "the destruction" that is befalling the thousands at our side, and the ten thousands at our right.  What I hope you will see is that Psalm 91 is a complete covenant package of protection.  It covers all the evils known to mankind, and God tells us how to claim His protection over them all! 
So, let's take a look at another promise in Psalm 91 ... You will only [be a spectator as you] look on with your eyes and witness the [divine] repayment of the wicked [as you watch safely from the shelter of the Most High]. Here God is telling us that we will see His judgment! I believe we are already beginning to see it as He exposes the corruption and perversion in the high places of the powerful.  Sooner or later, every sin will be exposed and paid for.  We are seeing that begin to happen today in the case of child sex predators, election fraud, and the unmasking of corrupt "science". Nothing will go unpunished. And I think this verse is telling us that if we seek His protection from the evil that is causing those around us to fall, that protection will include a sort of detachment; we will see it and not let it become part of us.  Our protection keeps us from letting the Enemy's hate become a part of us.  By believing and trusting in God's protection promises, we are putting ourselves in a separate category from the wicked mentioned in the verse, as well as the doubters and unbelievers.
But I must give a cautionary warning about Psalm 91. It does not promise protection from persecution. As Peggy Joyce Ruth, the author of the book, Psalm 91, says:  "There is a difference in the destruction of the enemy [as outlined in this Psalm] and persecution for the sake of the Gospels of Kingdom and Salvation."  In truth, Jesus, himself, told us that if we follow Him, we can expect to be persecuted. Jesus suffered persecution, but He did not face calamity, disaster, disease, or catastrophes. This verse lets us know to expect that spiritual warfare will be a part of our Christian walk, even as we suffer physical and spiritual attacks. The words of this verse are not written just to inspire or comfort us, but to provide protection and deliverance from the attacks of the Enemy.
The rest of Psalm 91 provides more promises: no evil will befall us; no plague come near our dwellings (SO relevant today!); God will command His angels to protect, defend and guard us as we continue in service and obedience to Him; we will tread on our enemies and trample them underfoot; He will be with us in our time of trouble [persecution]; He will rescue us and honor us; He will satisfy us with a long life and we will receive our eternal salvation. BUT, it is very important that you see the condition God has placed on these promises. The wonderful promises of Psalm 91 are dependent upon one’s meeting the conditions stated in the first two verses, as evidenced in the words of verse 9: Because you have made the Lord your refuge and your dwelling place, you can remain secure and rest in His Shadow [whose power no Enemy can withstand].
And I want to share the testimony of a reader who so vividly captured the truth of what it means to choose to believe the promises of this powerful psalm. He wrote to me about a year ago, after stumbling across the 2012 post I wrote, and this is what he said ... "Never was Psalm 91 more relevant to mankind than today. Your explanation of Psalm 91 is what the Holy Spirit has been revealing to me over the last few weeks, as the Corona Virus brings the whole World to its knees. Although at age 78 I am in the at-higher-risk category, I have no fear, because I trust in God's promises in Psalm 91. Until recently (schools have been closed due to the Pandemic) I have been teaching scripture to Primary School boys and girls. Last year the syllabus dealt with God's promises. I taught the kids, as the Bible teaches us, that when God makes a promise, He Keeps it! I was so happy to observe [that] the children accepted this truth so eagerly. Whenever I would use [in class] the phrase 'God makes a Promise', the whole class would rise in unison, punch the air with their little fists and shout out loud, 'He always keeps it'! I pray they will never forget this truth. It is clear to me (like you) that only those who truly believe in the promises of Psalm 91 will receive the protection from God which is promised in this Psalm".
So, I ask the same question in 2021 that I asked in 2012, because I discern the gravity of our situation, and the heart of the Father that we earnestly believe in His promises so that we might not be deprived of them. He longs for us all to have a depth to our faith; a very real confidence and trust in Him. We must not just say the words, but believe them to our core; live them, and embed them in our hearts. I pray that each of you will examine your hearts to know if you truly trust Him. The promises of God are real, but the benefits are not available to everyone. Hold fast to them and don't let go!  

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