Reflecting on Psalm 91: 1-2, 10-11. 12-13, 14-15
We’re living through some significant dis-ease these days, and It’s during these seasons of stress and fear that we want to remind Jesus, as Satan did, of Psalm 91, which we sing today and throughout Lent. Doesn’t it clearly say that God’s angels will surround us, lest we dash our foot against a stone? That tact didn’t work with Jesus, who repelled Satan’s volleying of sacred scripture by returning Satan’s challenge with the ultimate reproof: Thou shalt not put the Lord, your God, to the test.
But still we sing it, not just in Lent, but “On Eagle’s Wings,” the beautiful musical setting of Psalm 91, is now a hymn beloved by people of many faiths throughout the Western world. We sing it, I think, not only because we love the strong and comforting assurance that God will be with us when we are in trouble, but because there are so many times in our lives when we knew, deep in our bones, that it was true.
I admit that I remind Jesus on a daily basis of the promises in this psalm, but my motive is far removed—I hope—from the menace and predation of Satan. I pray these powerful words in gratitude, because they have been true every day of my life. But I also pray for strength and obedience, to surrender to the mystery of suffering and death.
This whole losing battle for Satan was in the desert, of course. Who knows? Deserts were once gardens, millions of years ago. On the cross, Jesus waged his final battle against Satan, who hangs out in deserts, and restored to us the Garden of eternal life.
Cling to him. He will deliver you.
In what ways has “On Eagle’s Wings” been a comfort to you throughout your life?
Kathy McGovern ©2022