Psalm 125:5 (MSG) – “God will round up the backsliders, corral them with the incorrigibles. Peace over Israel!”
The word backslider is synonymous with ‘defectors’ or ‘falling away’. The question that today’s verse poses is “how can I be sure that I will not fall away, but remain faithful?” God’s word is clear that we wander like lost sheep (Is. 53), but God is a faithful shepherd who pursues us relentlessly. We have our ups and downs, zealously believing one day and gloomily doubting the next, but God is faithful. How has the Lord shown his faithfulness in your life thus far?
As we conclude Psalm 125, it is clear that our security does not come because we are sure of ourselves, but because we trust that God is sure of us. Jude 24, 25 says “To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy—to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” Who is the one that keeps us from falling/stumbling? What is the secure promise of the Lord according to Jude?
Today, spend time worshipping the Lord who brings us into the unshakable security in Him. Use the words in Jude 25, to declare that our security comes from our savior who deserves all glory, majesty, power and authority, now and forever more, AMEN!
Psalm 125:4 (NLT) – “O Lord, do good to those who are good, whose hearts are in tune with you.”
Psalm 119:68 says that all that God is and does is good. “You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees”. This is the security with which the people of God approach the Lord in prayer. Why is the psalmist asking to be taught of God’s decrees in response of His goodness?
In what areas of your life do you need God’s goodness to overflow and bring security in?
Today’s passage says that God does good to those who are good. 2 Peter 1.5 says “make every effort to add to your faith goodness.” What are some practical ways in which you can add goodness to your faith?
The ending of today’s verse says “…whose hearts are in tune with you.” Other translations use the word ‘righteous’ instead of ‘in tune’. What does it mean to be in tune with God, and how does that bring out God’s righteousness? How can you be more in tune with the Lord?
Psalm 125:3 (NIV) – “The scepter of the wicked will not remain over the land allotted to the righteous, for then the righteous might use their hands to do evil.”
The word “scepter” is to be understood as oppressive power that is bent on destruction. In today’s verse, because the Lord is our security, the evil and oppressive intention of the wicked cannot stand or remain—whether sickness, death, despair, and persecution. In light of this truth, how are we to no longer respond in fear and despair to the difficult circumstances of our lives?
In today’s verse, the psalmist suggests that the main reason why the wicked cannot remain is because the land does not belong to them! Rather it belongs to the ones whom it has been allotted to. What this means is that the life of security, blessing, hope, and salvation has been allotted to us by the Lord, and no power or the evil intention of the wicked will prevail. What are the clear blessings that that Lord has allotted to you?
When we are threatened by fears and insecurities, we can be tempted to respond by doing evil or having unloving thoughts and responses towards others. However, because the scepter of the wicked will not remain, our hands are also to not be used to do what is evil. In what ways have you been tempted or given into doing what is wrong in God’s sight due to fears and insecurities? What are some practical ways to respond where evil and wickedness are not allowed to remain your life?
Psalm 125:2 – “Just as the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, both now and forever.”
There were several mountains, even higher than Zion surrounding the Jerusalem area. The Mount of Olives stands sixty-six meters higher than Zion, and Mount Scopus towers more than seventy-six meters above Zion, with other peaks standing higher than Zion as well. These surrounding mountains function as a wall around Jerusalem—a wall that keeps invading forces at bay. This is imagery that is used in this verse to capture the manner in which Yahweh surrounds as a protective ‘wall’ around his people.
Having mountains as a protective shield/wall means that it will never shake or crumble. How does this imagery of God as these vast mountains surrounding and protecting us affect your view of God as our protector?
The wording “…the Lord surrounds” is to give the assurance that there is no area in our lives that is exposed, defenseless, or has become a blind spot. What are the areas/times/circumstances where you have felt exposed, defenseless, or that you were in God’s blind spot? Today pray and surrender and welcome the Lord’s very care and presence in those very areas.
Today’s verse ends with “…both now and forever.” This is the assurance that God’s care and protection over His people is to occur in the now (today), and also forever (eternity). This means that there is never a time when we are outside of God’s protective care. How are we to now view any and all area, past and present and future?
Psalm 125:1 (NLT) – “Those who trust in the Lord are as secure as Mount Zion; they will not be defeated (shaken) but will endure forever.”
The experience of insecurity, uncertainty, and fears are the common human experiences in this sin-dominated world. In today’s passage however, the psalmist invites those who trust in the Lord to a completely different existence, where certainty, security and steadiness is now to be our experienced reality.
Today’s passage begins with “Those who trust in the Lord…” The designation “those” refers to the community’s (not only an individual’s) response to the Lord. How does trusting the Lord together as a community differ/enhance the aspect of trusting in the Lord?
The word “trust” is to be understood as an act of placing full faith and confidence in the one whose trustworthiness has been shown throughout. For the people of Israel, they were to place their trust in the Lord, who has shown His trustworthiness by delivering them from Egypt, from famine, from the threats of invading armies, and from their sins. Today, as we place our trust in the Lord, let’s count the ways the Lord has shown us His trustworthiness in our lives. In what particular ways has the Lord shown His trustworthiness to you?
Psalm 46:5-6 claims that God’s people can live securely as Mount Zion, because “God is within her, and she will not fall”. We (Christians) are no better than the world in need of protection and security. What is different is that we don’t have to build our own place of security, rather it is the Lord who builds our strong place of refuge, for God is with and within us.