I have been doing a Bible Study on the Psalms of Ascent, which are based on the journey up the mountain to Jerusalem to worship at the temple. These psalms begin with 120 and go through 134.
A common theme of the psalms I have been reading so far is that God was on the side of the pilgrim. Psalm 124 begins with: “If the Lord had not been on our side- let Israel say- if the Lord had not been on our side when men attacked us”, and goes on to describe all that would have prevailed against them. I had read this phrasing before, but was really struck by it this time. I thought of a good game of football (or any team sport). You always want the really athletic or smart person to be on your side in order to win. We have this wonderful amazing God who is on our team, on our side. He is working on our behalf to take care of us, protect us and give us the ultimate victory. How cool is that?
Saturday I was reading Psalm 18 and found some similar ideas in the verses. Soak up the awesome promises found in these verses!
Psalm 18:2, 6-9, 16, 19, 28-30
The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears. The earth trembled and quaked, and the foundations of the mountains shook; they trembled because he was angry. Smoke rose from his nostrils; consuming fire came from his mouth, burning coals blazed out of it. He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under his feet.
He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters.
He brought me into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.
You, O Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light. With your help I can advance against a troop with my God I can scale a wall. As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless.