“1 The one who lives in the shelter of the Most High, who rests in the shadow of the Almighty,
2 will say to the LORD, “You are my refuge, my fortress, and my God in whom I trust!”
3 He will surely deliver you from the hunter’s snare and from the destructive plague.
4 With his feathers he will cover you, under his wings you will find safety. His truth is your shield and armor.
5 You need not fear terror that stalks in the night, the arrow that flies in the day,
6 plague that strikes in the darkness, or calamity that destroys at noon.
7 If a thousand fall at your side or ten thousand at your right hand, it will not overcome you.
8 Only observe it with your eyes, and you will see how the wicked are paid back.
9 “LORD, you are my refuge!” Because you chose the Most High as your dwelling place,
10 no evil will fall upon you, and no affliction will approach your tent,
11 for he will command his angels to protect you in all your ways.
12 With their hands they will lift you up so you will not trip over a stone.
13 You will stomp on lions and snakes; you will trample young lions and serpents.
The LORD Speaks
14 Because he has focused his love on me, I will deliver him. I will protect him because he knows my name.
15 When he calls out to me, I will answer him. I will be with him in his distress. I will deliver him, and I will honor him.
16 I will satisfy him with long life; I will show him my deliverance.” (Psalm chapter 91 ISV)
When we read each of these verses they tell us just how blessed we are for having God as our refuge. Meditating on these verses makes us feel good inside. We know we are loved by our Father and protected. It’s amazing!
Some of us while reading Psalm 91:11-12 may remember this is the same passage the Devil twisted while tempting Jesus:
“The devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’ ” Matthew 4:5-6 NLT
Basically, ‘If you’re really the son of God and if the scriptures are really true then jump, because nothing will ever harm you.’ Satan was using the scriptures to appeal to any pride in Jesus, and he does the same to us. The Devil has no new tricks, they’re just repackaged. But notice how Jesus answered his tricky dare:
“Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the LORD your God.'” Matthew 4:7 NLT
What a perfect answer. Jesus knew that though we enjoy God’s awesome protection we shouldn’t willfully put ourselves in dangerous situations. That would not be making God our refuge. The awesome promises we read about in Psalm 91 apply only to those who make God their refuge, not to daredevils.
One of God’s amazing promises is protection from plagues. But could we really expect such protection while engaging in activities or pleasures that cause plagues? Come on really. Has the Devil hoodwinked us into putting God to the test and then expecting Him to protect us?
The good news is if we have been fooled into living life recklessly we can repent because Jesus paid the price:
“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, in his grace, freely makes us right in his sight. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past.” Romans 3:23-25 NLT
“Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our consciences from sinful deeds so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins.” Hebrews 9:14 NLT
All of us mess up guys. But the truly blessed people repent. They receive forgiveness for ALL their sins, and experience God’s awesome protection we read about in Psalms 91. But if God shows us certain lifestyles and habits are not pleasing to Him and we continue to persist in them anyway, what then can we expect?
“Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies.” Hebrews 10:26-27 NLT
Don’t let Satan bamboozle you into thinking you can do whatever you want and nothing bad will happen to you because you have God’s protection. If we live wildly Psalm 91 doesn’t apply to us. He tried that trick on Jesus and it didn’t work. And it doesn’t have to work on you and me either.
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