The Psalms of Ascent are a set of fifteen psalms that were traditionally sung as priests entered the temple, and Jews journeyed to the Holy Land to celebrate the Passover Festival. They offer hope, encouragement, and peace in a time of uncertainty. Today we will read and discuss Psalm 121, the second psalm in the psalms of ascents.
The second psalm of ascents, Psalm 121, is a beautiful picture of God’s protection, and reminds us that we should look to Him, not earthly things, for where we put our hope.
A song of ascents.
1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord watches over you—
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
6 the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.
The first two verses might sound familiar. Casting Crowns has a song called “Praise You In This Storm”, and the bridge is the first two verses.
When the Jews would take their annual pilgrimage on their way to Jerusalem, they could look up to Jerusalem that sat on a hill, and sing this song. For us today, I personally feel that this is a reminder that we need not look to earthly things for our help, but to God alone, our Creator.
Our foundation should be set in our faith in God, and it will not slip, but remain steadfast, because God doesn’t sleep. He is always there, providing protection and shelter.
Psalm 121 is a picture of complete and all-encompassing protection by God, using phrases about the sun and the moon – both night and day – and reminding us that the Lord will watch over us during our coming and going.
What a powerful picture of a sovereign God! In a time when our future is so uncertain, we can rely on God to give us certain protection.
Each day, from March 23-April 6, 2020, I will be live on Instagram reading and discussing each of the fifteen psalms of ascents. I want to encourage you to join me.
Also, take a moment each day for your own study. Write the psalms (they’re all relatively short), and dig into God’s Word. That is where we will find peace.