God, Our Protector

by Julie Barrier

Psalm 121:

“I lift up mine eyes to the hills—

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord,

The Maker of Heaven and earth..

He will not let your foot slip.

He who watches over you will not slumber;

Indeed, he who watches over Israel

Will neither slumber nor sleep.”

Verses 1-2 describe the beginning prayer life of a baby Christian.  When he senses a need, he is learning to bring it to God in prayer.  He learns God is Creator of both the physical and spiritual world and interacts with every part of life.  He discovers the hand of God in creation. He discovers God as creator of heaven…that there is a whole world in another dimension-a spiritual world that he cannot see, but must appropriate by faith.”He will not let your foot slip,” Ps.121:3. The keeping power of the Heavenly Father also has historical significance.  When the traveling Israelites trekked to Jerusalem three times a year, they faced many perils along the way.  Robbers, wild animals, and brutal heat were three of their enemies.  Perhaps they sang this comforting psalm around their evening campfires.

The vocabulary of this poem also implies that the pilgrim must climb (ascend) toward his Heavenly Father.  From every other part of Israel, the Jews said they must travel or “go up” to the Holy City.  “Moving feet”, “lifting eyes”, “going out”, “coming in” all imply movement toward a goal.  The love of God draws His child to His heart.  Nevertheless there is a godless yet seductive gravitational force relentlessly pulling him downward.  The world system is always a hurdle the traveler must overcome.  The Christian must not look back.  On his old life, or he will experience the paralysis that Lot’s wife did when she vacillated and was transformed into a pillar of salt in Genesis.  The spiritual child must run to the loving, sheltering arms of his Daddy.  God promises this as our guide and protector:

“To Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you without blemish before the presence of His glory with rejoicing, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, be the glory.” Jude 25.

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