1 A song of ascents. I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? 2 My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; 4 indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. 5 The LORD watches over you—the LORD is your shade at your right hand; 6 the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.
7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; 8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and for evermore.
Psalm 121– God’s constant care
(Verses 1-2) This psalm is the second ‘song of ascent’ in a cluster of fifteen psalms. It seems to offer a solution to Psalm 120’s problem of oppression by lies deceit and aggressive intent coming from those who oppose God’s children. Those who know God look for God’s peace in all dealings, while others seek war. The answer given in the first two verses is for God’s children, when opposed by those war-loving foes, to ‘lift up’ their eyes. Their gaze, however, is to be far higher than the inspiring mountains which they can see, or the heavens stretching over those mountains. They must look to the ultimate Source of all help and blessing, namely the LORD Himself. He made the mountains—and the heavens too. There is no higher Person to look to for help than the great Creator Himself. That is why He is described as ‘the Maker of heaven and earth’. Just think, in the words of one hymn, ‘The great Creator became my Saviour, and all God’s fulness dwells in Him.’ The Almighty God took on flesh, lived a sinless and faultless life, and went to the cross to bear our sins and take the just judgement for those sins in His own body. He was smitten by God in our place so we could be forgiven, freed and receive eternal life.
(Verses 3-6) Half of Psalm 121 is taken by detailing how God really has continuous and unfailing care for His children. We become His children when we receive Him in our hearts as our Lord and Saviour. John 1:11-13 tell us that Jesus came to ‘his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.’ Although many reject or ignore that Jesus is the Lord and will not turn to Him, all those who do receive Him in their hearts become ‘children of God’ spiritually. These ‘born-again’ sinners received Him by belief in Him as their Saviour. They are not born as spiritual children of God. They do not do that because they follow a man-made plan to become a child of God. Neither can anyone else make them one, not even their own fathers. It is God’s work as they believe fully in Christ and trust in Him. When you belong to God like that, He watches over you ceaselessly. He will not let you slip, if you walk with Him. He never goes to sleep as He watches over you. He shades and protects you by day and by night. This really is 24/7 care from your loving Father in Heaven. You have become His child!
(Verses 7-8) The summary of God’s care for those who know Him—and that includes you, if you repent and trust in Christ as we have just discussed—is that, although assailed at times, you will be kept from suffering and doing harm if you walk with Him. He watches over your life—and that includes the fact that you can never lose the eternal life you have in the Lord Jesus Christ. Wherever you go, whatever you do, however you do it, and whoever you may meet or be with, in all your comings and goings, God is watching over you. That is true in earth and Heaven!