A favourite psalm of many is Psalm 91. Everyone likes this part:
Praise of a Song, by David. He that dwells in the help of the Highest, shall sojourn under the shelter of the God of heaven. He shall say to the Lord, Thou art my helper and my refuge: my God; I will hope in him. For he shall deliver thee from the snare of the hunters, from every troublesome matter. He shall overshadow thee with his shoulders, and thou shalt trust under his wings: his truth shall cover thee with a shield. Thou shalt not be afraid of terror by night; nor of the arrow flying by day; nor of the evil thing that walks in darkness; nor of calamity, and the evil spirit at noon-day. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. (Psalms 91:1-7 Brenton)
It’s a favorite these days, and was one in the wake of 9/11 (and in the military during the invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan. But there’s a part that most people are unaware of, and that’s this post’s subject.
Let’s go down towards the end of the psalm:
For he shall give his angels charge concerning thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up on their hands, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. (Psalms 91:11-12 Brenton)
If this looks familiar, it should. We like to quote this psalm, but during the temptation in the wilderness so did Satan:
Then the Devil took him to the Holy City, and, placing him on the parapet of the temple, said to him: “If you are God’s Son, throw yourself down, for Scripture says- -‘He will give his angels commands about thee, And on their hands they will upbear thee, Lest ever thou shouldst strike thy foot against a stone.'” “Scripture also says,” answered Jesus, “Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.'” (Matthew 4:5-7 TCNT)
As it turns out this was the beginning of the conflict between Christ and Satan while Our Lord was on this earth.
During the passion, crucifixion and death of Our Lord, it certainly looked like Jesus should have taken Satan up on his bargain. It’s for sure that Satan thought so. But Satan’s apparent victory evaporated when Jesus Christ rose from the dead and won for us eternal life.
God has promised to protect us. Sometimes, however, the road to victory and ultimate protection has some “bumps” in it, but that doesn’t mean that all is lost. If Our Lord had to go through what he did, what can we expect?
No, the more you share the sufferings of the Christ, the more may you rejoice, that, when the time comes for the manifestation of his Glory, you may rejoice and exult. (1 Peter 4:13 TCNT)