In the Almighty’s Shadow

Text: Psalms 91

 

I.         Where do you go when things get difficult?

            A.        It isn’t that a Christian’s life is free from troubles

                        1.         Jesus warned of persecution - Matthew 5:10-12

                        2.         There will be division in families - Matthew 10:34-36

                        3.         There will be trials to bear up under - James 1:2-4

II.        Safety for those stay near God - Psalms 91:1

            A.        This is not a general promise to all people

            B.        Abiding with God and He with us - I John 4:15-16

            C.        This is a close fellowship with God. So close that we are living in his shadow - Psalms 32:7

            D.        But notice that it is a choice on man’s part to dwell in the Most High’s shadow - Proverbs 18:10

III.       The writer’s trust in God - Psalms 91:2

            A.        Note use of “I”. He has a personal relationship with God. He is my God

            B.        A refuge and fortress are places of defense against enemies - Psalms 18:2

                        1.         Again, we see that this is not talking about never having problems, else we would never need a fortress - Psalms 46:1

IV.      The reader’s safety - Psalms 91:3-13

            A.        Note use of “you”. It is singular, applying to each individual

            B.        Traps and deadly disease - Psalms 91:3

                        1.         These are things that strike unaware

                        2.         Snares are the traps of evil men - Psalms 140:1-5

                        3.         Strength is not a protection

                        4.         But God shields us - Psalms 91:4

                                    a.         The imagery of a mother bird protecting her young – God protects because He cares for you

                                    b.         God is trustworthy. Our confidence in Him is our shield.

                        5.         It doesn’t mean Christians won’t suffer from a trap or get sick.

                                    a.         A Christian doesn’t need to worry about such things

                                    b.         God protects us from more things than we realize and when it doesn’t happen it is because of a need - Daniel 3:16-18

                                    c.         Remember Jesus died by crucifixion after being beaten. Why should we expect no harm to ourselves?

            C.        It doesn’t matter the type of problem - Psalms 91:5-6

                        1.         Terrors in the night (mental anxiety)

                        2.         Arrow (physical harm by people)

                        3.         Pestilence (disease)

                        4.         Destruction (disasters)

            D.        These are things that scare people

                        1.         A new virus breaks out and people are in a panic!

                        2.         Some terrorist group is going launch weapons of mass destruction!

                        3.         People live their lives in constant fear, but the Christian doesn’t - Matthew 6:25

            E.        It doesn’t matter how big the problem or how close it gets - Psalms 91:7

            F.        Justice will come to the evil doer - Psalms 91:8; Galatians 6:8

            G.        Make God the place you stay - Psalms 91:9-10

                        1.         Learn from God and there is peace - Philippians 4:9,11

                        2.         Not that there is no disasters, but that the disasters aren’t significant - Romans 8:35-39

            H.        God will watch over you - Psalms 91:11-10

                        1.         This is the passage Satan used to tempt Jesus - Matthew 4:5-7

                                    a.         Notice that Satan skipped over “to guard you in all your ways”

                                    b.         Recall that this about the person who makes God his refuge. He follows in God’s shadow. God’s ways are his ways - Psalms 91:1-2, 9

                        2.         This is not a promise to be protected from reckless behavior

            I.         It also isn’t that we merely avoid or survive disasters

                        1.         We crush the problems - Romans 16:19-20; 8:37

                        2.         What Paul saw in his life - II Timothy 4:16-18

V.        God’s assurance - Psalms 91:14-16

            A.        Again, because a person clings to God in love, God will give him security

                        1.         Knowing God’s name is to know His authority

                        2.         By what authority? The name of Jesus - Acts 4:7,10

            B.        To call upon a name is to claim a right that was authorized

                        1.         Example: Paul called upon the name of Caesar - Acts 25:11-12

                        2.         God saves those who call upon him - Zechariah 13:9

                                    a.         But notice they go through the fire and are tested

            C.        Length of days

                        1.         Not necessarily a long physical life - Psalms 21:4; 23:6

                        2.         But the promise is that of a complete, full, and satisfying life, with eternal life following - Proverbs 3:2,16

VI.      Protection for God’s people

            A.        People who

                        1.         Dwell in God’s shelter (Psalms 91:1,9)

                        2.         Stay in God’s shadow (Psalms 91:1)

                        3.         Claim God as his refuge and shelter (Psalms 91:2,9)

                        4.         Trust God (Psalms 91:2)

                        5.         Love God (Psalms 91:14)

                        6.         Knows God’s authority (Psalms 91:14)

                        7.         Calls upon God’s authority (Psalms 91:15)

            B.        Nothing can truly harm a child of God - Romans 8:36-37