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Posts Tagged ‘Psalm 91’

Shh!

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” — Psalm 91:1

God has a secret!

King David called it a place1 of God’s protection and a shelter from strife and pride.2 Job, (pronounced with a long “o” and best known for his personal suffering) said it was a place where wisdom lived but that it had only been heard of, never yet discovered.3

The apostle Paul called that place a mystery, hidden for hundreds of years … until NOW! He said he, actually, discovered it and so could we!

He wrote the mystery is found by getting connected, literally, to God through Jesus!

This mystery has been kept in the dark for a long time, but now it’s out in the open. God wanted everyone, not just Jews, to know this rich and glorious secret inside and out, regardless of their background, regardless of their religious standing. The mystery in a nutshell is just this: Christ is in you” – Colossians 1:26-27

Not a euphemism, when joined to Christ we become a physical extension of himself — so much so that what we do in our bodies, good and bad, is what we are doing with and to Christ.4

When God looks at us he is seeing an extension of his son. Christ’s payment on the cross for sin, ours5. The Holy Spirit working in Jesus, now working in us. Our debts, his. Our bodies, his. Our needs, his. His closeness to the Father, ours. And when Jesus returns for us we shall be like him.6

This changes everything!

– fritz
1. Psalm 91:1
2. Psalm 31:20
3. Job 28:20-23
4. 1st Corinthians 6:13-17
5. 1st John 4:17
6. 1st John 3:2

Related Post: “Thin Places” — March 20, 2012

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A Party!

Eugene Peterson applies years of experience and pastoral training to capture the essence of Psalm 91 in the Message Bible and it has been very encouraging today — take a moment to absorb it.

If you’ll hold on to me for dear life,” says God,

I’ll get you out of any trouble.

I’ll give you the best of care if you’ll only get to know and trust me

Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times;

I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party.”
— Psalm 91:14-16 (Message Bible)

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“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” — Psalm 91:1

The Bible says God has a secret place.

Is this just a euphemism for God’s general care or is there, really, a place (physical or spiritual) not even suspected by most?  Is it just a euphemism for heaven or can the living person enter?

Psalms 31:20 calls it a “Pavilion” or “tent” saying it is a place of God’s presence, a place of safety from pride and strife of tongues. Job calls it a place of wisdom and that it is “hid from the eyes of all living” (Job 28:21) so at this point it sounds a bit like heaven, but not so fast! The New Testament, using the term “mystery”, says it is now revealed!

Paul said he discovered it and we could, too!

“By revelation [God] made known unto me the mystery; as I wrote afore in few words,  whereby, when ye read ye may understand…)”– Ephesians 3:2-4

He wrote the secret mystery is that God always planned to join himself with mere human beings — and actually does so in Christ! This mystery, he said, is “Christ in you” (Colossians 1:27) and that we actually enter into Christ like we enter our clothing (Galatians 3:27).

More than a euphemism, the Bible says our bodies actually become a physical part of Christ and that what we do in our bodies, both good and bad, is being done with and to Christ’s body. (1st Corinthians 6:13-17) This is why we need to do right things with our bodies. That same passage says those joined to Christ are one spirit, the human spirit infused and one with God’s Holy Spirit.

God’s secret place, his pavilion? Safe in Christ!

“God raised us up and seated us in the heavens with Christ Jesus … to show future generations the greatness of his grace by the goodness that God has shown us in Christ Jesus.” — Ephesians 2:5-7 (CEB)

Start reading the Scriptures from this perspective and a whole new world opens!

– fritz
Related Post: “Thin Places” — March 20, 2012

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The ancient religious artifacts of the Old Testament are actually object lessons for us, today.

The Tabernacle with its three sections is symbolic of the human body, soul, and spirit. The Ark of the Covenant symbolical of the believer’s “heart” — covered with Christ, sheltered under angelic protection, the place where we hear God’s voice.

The items inside the Ark of the Covenant are symbolical, too. A copy of the ten commandments was put there representing the law of God written in our hearts.

There was a second item inside the Ark of the Covenant – Aaron’s rod.

There’s a little history behind this artifact. Moses’ and Aaron’s authority was challenged so all the tribal leaders were commanded to put their walking sticks in God’s tent. God promised to reveal his choice. The very next day Aaron’s rod had not only grown leaves and flowers but yielded ripe almonds.

With the placement of Aaron’s rod inside the Ark of the Covenant Israel was reminded of God’s choice for High Priest and we are reminded of his chosen priesthood is inside of us. Like the ancient priests

  • We are not just tolerated but chosen;
  • God is our inheritance
  • God’s kingdom is our home
  • worship is our job.

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light” — 1st Peter 2:9

We do this, not by all becoming a pastor (though some may serve that way), but by serving Jesus in everything we do.

“And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men — Colossians 3:23

— fritz

1 – Hebrews 9:4, Exodus 25:10-20, Numbers 17:10

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The Bible goes into great detail on the ancient religious artifacts of the early Israelites. Why? The Apostle Paul says these were written,

“…for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come (1st Corinthian 10:11)

Earlier posts have noted the Tabernacle is actually a symbolical representation of the present day follower of Christ and the Ark of the Covenant symbolical of the believer’s heart; not the blood pump but the core being.

There’s more to notice. What was placed inside that Ark represents what God puts into us when he comes to live.

God predicted a future new covenant — different from the old in one primary way, God’s law would be in the heart!

“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people … they shall all know me” (Jeremiah 31:33)

The Commandments Moses received on God’s mountain, placed inside the Ark of the Covenant symbolises that coming change.

No longer do God’s renewed people require coercion, threats, and guilt to behave — they willingly follow and delight to obey. Holiness now starts on the inside and works its way out. God gives us the desire and ability to counteract our natural pull toward selfishness.

People can change! In Christ we get a renewed, clean, forgiven conscience and told to follow it.

When Christ touches a human heart it changes from a stubborn foe to a helpful friend!

— fritz
1 – Hebrews 9:4, Exodus 25:10-20, Numbers 17:10

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Ancient religious relics so long ago — why do we need to know how they were made, where they were placed, how they were used? Because they weren’t just for an ancient people but for today. They were recorded, Paul says,

“…for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come (1st Corinthian 10:11)

The Old Testament Tabernacle, relates to the body of a believer in Christ.1 The Ark of the Covenant, the believer’s heart — not the blood pump but the core of being!

Notice the Ark’s composition — Wood overlayed with pure gold.2
Wood speaks of humanity, gold speaks of deity.

When we give ourselves to Christ he come into our very being and covers us with himself. We are said to have “put on Christ”.3 Our frail humanity is overlayed with Christ.

Over our renewed self God places his angels to cover us with wings of protection.4 It is there, at the core of our being covered by Christ, God himself speaks5.

How do we know these things? When Christ died the temple veil preventing access to the Holy-of-Hollies was torn open — God did it (from above, top to bottom)6 He invites us to enter and fellowship with him, to see what he has done.

The invitation stands

[N]either knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. — Matthew 11:27b-28

— fritz

1 – See Ancient Object Lessons – Part One (February 11, 2012)
2 – Exodus 25:10-11
3 – Galatians 3:27
4 – Exodus 25:18-20, Psalm 91:4
5 – Exodus 25:22, Romans 8:16
6 – Matthew 27:51

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Sennachrib

Beware lest Hezekiah persuade you, saying, the LORD will deliver us. Hath any of the gods of the nations delivered his land out of the hand of the king of Assyria? — Isaiah 36:18-19

The Bible tells of when a foreign king came to conquer Jerusalem under the reign of king Hezekiah.

Hezekiah was a good king and trusted God, encouraging his people to do so, too. The enemy tried to get them to give up by blurring the lines between their faith and that of others, saying they are all the same and all just as weak.

The same mantra is heard today — trying to get us think all faiths are the same, just as potent, just as weak.

They are not.

The Bible tells of God’s secret place, unknown by many.1

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty … Surely he shall deliver thee … – Psalm 91:1-2a

That secret place has always been in Christ. The Old Testament saints trusted in the coming Christ who would save them, just as we look back to that same Christ who saves us. As Jesus said,

“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. — John 8:56

Ours is a living faith in the living God and his Christ

“And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever. — Revelation 11:14-16

— fritz

1. See Also: A Secret Society (but Anyone Can Join) — March 12, 2010

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