Day 21: Psalms to Safety in God

Psalm 16, illumination by Daniel L. Dew

Today’s Reading
Psalms 11, 16, 142, 46

Pastor Lisa’s Journal
I keep the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. – Psalm 16:8

In the Apostles’ Creed we declare that Jesus ascended into heaven and is now seated at the right hand of God, so it seems strange to read in Psalm 16 that God is at the Psalmist’s right hand. The Psalmist is a mere mortal, how can this be? When you dig a little deeper it becomes quite profound. The Eaton Bible Dictionary reminds us that “a position at the right hand was regarded as the chief place of honor and power.” So the Psalmist is saying that God has the chief place of honor and power (authority) in his life. The Psalmist actually says this multiple times in multiple ways throughout the Psalm:

  • You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you. (v. 2)
  • The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot (v. 5)
  • I bless the Lord who gives me counsel (v. 7)
  • I keep the Lord always before me (v. 8.)

In verse 11, the Psalmist uses the right hand image in a different way, this time describing God’s right hand as being full of “pleasures forevermore.” Baker’s Bible Dictionary states “the hand of God, and especially the right hand, is also understood as a place of salvation, refuge, and protection.” How beautiful! Salvation, refuge and protection are pleasures to be enjoyed forever by those who honor God and make God the leader of their life. How different are these eternal pleasures from fleeting earthly pleasures.

I appreciate the Psalmist’s attitude: heart is glad, soul is rejoicing, and body is at rest. (v. 9) I also appreciate that the Psalmist “shall not be moved” (v. 8.) from this attitude, even though his circumstances will change. He has an eternal mindset that will not be shaken.

V. O. Fossett based his hymn We Shall Not be Moved on a spiritual that rose up amongst those enslaved in America. The original spiritual has been modified and used by many groups as a rallying song since it is so easy to modify the chorus to suit a need. For today, let’s use Fossett’s version as a prayer of affirmation and commitment to God.

Glory hallelujah, I shall not be moved;
Anchored in Jehovah, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that’s planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved.

Refrain: I shall not be, I shall not be moved,
I shall not be, I shall not be moved;
Just like a tree that’s planted by the waters,
I shall not be moved.

In his love abiding, I shall not be moved;
And in Him confiding, I shall not be moved; Refrain

Tho all hell assail me, I shall not be moved;
Jesus will not fail me, I shall not be moved; Refrain

Tho the tempest rages, I shall not be moved;
On the Rock of Ages, I shall not be moved; Refrain

You are invited to join me on a summer adventure through one of the most beloved books in the Bible, Psalms. To download the Summer in the Psalms reading plan, click here Psalms Reading Plan

As you read, you are encouraged to use the SOAP Method for keeping a spiritual journal, as taught at New Hope Christian Fellowship in Hawaii. For more information on this simple and powerful way of engaging the Word of God, please click here or use the simple instructions provided in the reading plan itself.

I look forward to reading your comments and to all that Jesus will do in you and through you as you seek him this summer. – Lisa <><

PS- For more information on the scripture translation, art and the use of this devotional in other settings, please refer to the copyright information page.

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