Lord my Strength - (H5797 )
Here are two verses where 'Lord my strength' appears:
The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him a habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him.
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.
In studying these verses, I was struck by the parallels between them. The first verse is from the song of Moses. In Exodus 14, the Lord rescued the Hebrew people by parting the sea and allowing them to escape the army of Pharaoh. The second verse is a Psalm written by David. We're not sure of the circumstances, but we know that David is celebrating God's hearing his prayer. from verse 6:
Blessed be the LORD, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications.
So the occasions of the writing of these verses, are times of crying out to God in time of need and God's hearing and answering.
Notice the first phrase of each:
Moses: The LORD is my strength and song
David: The LORD is my strength and my shield
Both Moses and David call God their strength. Moses then says He is a song and David calls Him a shield. Does the parallel continue? In what way is a song a shield? What are the primary weapons of the dark one? Fear and despair. . .hopelessness leading to depression!!! All of which are defeated by worship and praise of God. Every attack of fear and despair will be deflected, as if with a physical shield, by a song singing thanks and praises to the Lord.
Do you remember the giant Goliath?
1 Samuel 17:4-11
And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath,
whose height was six cubits and a span.
And he had a helmet of brass upon his head,
and he was armed with a coat of mail;
and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of brass.
And he had greaves of brass upon his legs,
and a target of brass between his shoulders.
And the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam;
and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron:
and one bearing a shield went before him.
Quite a list of things to be afraid of. . .
And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and ye servants to Saul? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us. And the Philistine said, I defy the armies of Israel this day; give me a man, that we may fight together. When Saul and all Israel heard those words of the Philistine, they were dismayed, and greatly afraid.
Everything about Goliath was designed to inspire fear, to cultivate the spirit of fear in his opponents. . . and The army of God was dismayed and greatly afraid. They were paralyzed by Goliath. Seeing a giant standing against us, strikes our heart with fear. He is such an imposing figure, but one giant cannot defeat an army. The giant required the spirit of fear to accomplish his task. It wasn't Goliath's great fighting ability which allowed him to prevail. We are never told that he had ever fought a battle before. His appearance alone undermined the confidence of his opponents and it was this spirit of fear which stopped the army of Israel.
Fear is a powerful opponent, much more powerful than any single giant, but fear is always defeated by faith. Singing praises to God in the face of fear, is a powerful act of faith that will prevail over any giant. It is this confidence in God in the face of fear, our faith in God in the face of overwhelming odds, that is the source of our strength. It is our strength. It is not God's strength, rather it is our confidence in God that makes us unconquerable. It is our lack of faith which will defeat us or it will be our overflowing abundance of faith, our singing in the middle of our darkness, our singing at midnight that will take us through. . .
Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed.
Paul and Silas sang unto God and the earth moved beneath their feet. Their chains were broken. They were set free from their bondage. When there is no hope, no light, in the time of our greatest weakness. . . we can still sing praises unto God. . .
Singing is a voluntary act. We do not accidentally sing. It is a decision we make. I'm quite sure that Paul and Silas did not feel like singing. If they had given in to their circumstances it would not have been a song they uttered. . . They were bound in a terrible dark place. To Sing was a faith filled spiritual decision they made. To fast is also a faith filled spiritual decision. In some ways singing in a time of trial is the vocal equivalent of fasting. Singing in a time of trial is our Spirit commanding our flesh, bending our flesh to do that which it doesn't want to do. Our flesh wants to run and hide and quake and cry. Our Spirit takes control, quells the spirit of fear and we sing a song to the Lord. . . That is our faith in God. . . It is that faith in God that is our strength. . .
I love you my God. . .
Thank you my Lord. . .
Let my heart always sing unto you. . .
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Lord my Strength - (H5797 )