Psalm 123-124: Our Help Comes from God!
July 1, 2022
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
What do you do when you are in trouble? The key is the eyes. “To you I lift up my eyes” (123:1).
It is tempting, and natural enough, to look around at difficulties, to ponder them, and, as it were, focus all your attention upon the hassle and problems. With such a focus on these difficulties inevitably comes discouragement, perhaps circumstantial depression, and we can end up saying and doing things that drag us further down, and other people along with us. But this psalmist looks to God.
How does he look at God? In what way, with what kind of attitude? “As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master” (123:2). Masters would indicate what they wanted by beckoning with their hand or pointing. A servant would look at the hand of his master or mistress to receive instructions. The psalmist is, as it were, looking at God’s hand until God has mercy upon him, and indicates that God’s instructions are to have mercy on the psalmist.
The attitude then is one of abundant trust. Why? Because God is all powerful. Like a master has power to command what he wants, so the Master, the Lord, God, has omnipotent power to have mercy on us and rescue us at any time that we choose. There we look to God. We pray to him. We ask him. We are peaceful before him, waiting, trusting, like a servant looks at the hand of his master.
What do we pray? “Have mercy upon us, O Lord” (123:3). They have put up with more than enough scorn and contempt from the proud. Their faith has been sneered at, their lifestyle mocked. And what they are looking for is mercy from God.
Is this where we look when we have difficulties? Do we look to God to have mercy upon us? Or do we try to find some other solution?
Psalm 124, then, acts as a parallel to this psalm by celebrating what happens when this prayer of Psalm 123 is answered! “If it had not been the Lord who was on our side…then they would have swallowed us up alive” (124:1, 3). But the Lord WAS on our side! “Blessed be the Lord,” praise God, “who has not given us as prey to their teeth!” (124:6). The conclusion, “Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (124:8).
Would you therefore first turn to God and ask God to have mercy on you with whatever the difficulties are that you are facing this morning? And then would you thank God and remember all the times that he has rescued you in the past? Our help comes from God!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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