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  • Writer's pictureThe Hermit of Antipolo

Security Under God's Protection (A Perspective on Covid-19 Part 31)

Today’s psalm: Psalm 91



We have been praying Psalm 91 as a community every day throughout this pandemic. It is a wonderful prayer, full of spiritual realities that greatly help us as we live in this valley of tears. It is particularly appropriate in today’s situation of COVID-19, as we look to being rescued “from the destroying plague” (v.3b). What spiritual realities do we learn?


First, “the punishment of the wicked you will see.” (v.8b). COVID-19 is chastisement from God, for the great wickedness that is in our world today. The justice of God demands punishment. But such punishment is intended to bring people back to God, as they realize their sin and repent. Our work post-COVID is to help bring people to this realization, that they cannot continue to disobey or even mock God, and that they need to amend their ways and turn back to Him.


Second, we continue to be embroiled in spiritual warfare, as heaven and hell battle for our souls. Oh, if we only could see this spiritual war raging around us, in the heavens and on earth. We would be both terrified and assured. The angels of God versus the demons of hell. Our assurance is that God “commands his angels with regard to you, to guard you wherever you go.” (v.11). With their support and protection (v.12), we “can tread upon the asp and the viper, trample the lion and the dragon.” (v.13).


Third, as we see the enemy actively coming against us, we must realize that our only protection is in God. “Because you have the Lord for your refuge and have made the Most High your stronghold, no evil shall befall you, no affliction come near your tent.” (v.9-10). Now the reality is that we are affected by evil around us and we do experience affliction. But the more we are in the Lord, the less we will be adversely affected by evil. And we do need to see things in the right perspective. For example, if we die due to COVID-19, but if we are securely in God’s grace, then we ultimately go to heaven. Is that not where all of us eventually want to go? Is it actually better to remain in this valley of tears or to go off to that perfect place with our Father?


Fourth, with the above, we need never be afraid. “You shall not fear the terror of the night nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that roams in darkness, nor the plague that ravages at noon.” (v.5-6). Today, the world is petrified with fear, staying locked down in their homes, avoiding contact with other people. What if no vaccine or cure is found, will this situation persist forever? In life there will always be the arrow or pestilence or plague, but life must go on. We resume our normal life not because there is no threat to our safety whenever we go out of our homes, but because we are secure in God’s protection.


Fifth, we must continue to put our trust in God. We must know that in Him, we “dwell in the shelter of the Most High” and “abide in the shade of the Almighty” (v.1). Thus we can always confidently “say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and fortress, my God in whom I trust.’” (v.2). God is constant and ever faithful. Our circumstances in life change, but God never changes. He is always there for us, and “his faithfulness is a protecting shield.” (v.4c).


We as MFC are already experiencing the protection of God. We do have many frontliners. But we have been protected. Today COVID-19 has already claimed over 370,000 deaths throughout the world, with more to come. For us in MFC, I know of only one who has died, and I know of only a handful who have been infected. “Though a thousand fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, near you it shall not come.” (v.7).


Psalm 91 is not just the psalmist telling us about God, but it is also God Himself, in Part II of the psalm, speaking to us and assuring us of what the psalmist had just said. Ultimately, God assures us of salvation. Is that not what life on earth is ultimately about? On earth, God protects us and delivers us. On earth, we experience the all-powerful God who accompanies us in our distress, honors and satisfies us, and saves us.


“Because he clings to me I will deliver him;

because he knows my name I will set him on high.

He will call upon me and I will answer;

I will be with him in distress;

I will deliver him and give him honor.

With length of days I will satisfy him,

and fill him with my saving power.”

(v.14-16)


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