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A Season of Psalms - Psalm 46:1-3, 10

Psalm 46:1-3, 10

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling…‘Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!’”

English Standard Version (ESV)

“A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing; Our helper He amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing.” Martin Luther, the great reformer, was a man of many talents. He was a priest, a monk, a theologian, professor, and an outstanding musician. Known primarily for the Protestant Reformation and the nailing of the “95 Theses” to the door of the All Saints’ Church in Wittenberg, he was also an extraordinary composer, and his quintessential contribution to hymnody was the hymn “A Mighty Fortress is our God.”

Luther’s great hymn finds it inspiration in Psalm 46. The authors of the psalm, the Sons of Korah, know that God is with them. Despite the upheaval of the earth, despite mountains being displaced into the heart of the depths and the waters roaring and foaming and swelling, God is ever-present. He’s not only present, but He’s in the middle of it all, guiding and orchestrating every detail and movement. He is in complete control. Since He is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, there is nothing to fear. There is nothing outside the realm of His power and control. Since we know this, how do we relinquish our own attempts at control? God tells us Himself in verse 10: “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in all the earth!”

Verse 10 brings good news: we don’t have to be in control anymore! We don’t have to be God! In her song “God is in Control,” Twila Paris sang these lyrics: He has never let you down, why start to worry now? He is still the Lord of all we see. And He is still the loving Father, watching over you and me. There is no power above Him or beside Him, and so we know…God is in control.

Further Reading: Exodus 14-15; Matthew 6:25-34

Pray with me: Father, we are anxious and uptight about many things, some beyond our control. We can do nothing in our own strength, so today we commit to placing our complete trust in You. Forgive us where we’ve usurped Your power and authority. May we rely on the Rock of our Salvation, from this time forward and forevermore. We pray this in the name of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, Amen.

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