Psalm 121 - Lift Your Eyes
Lift your eyes to the one who stood trial so you could have freedom.
Read / Listen
Read Psalm 121
A song of ascents.
1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord watches over you—
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
6 the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
8 the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
Listen to passage & devotional:
Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 52
Q. How does Christ’s return
“to judge the living and the dead”
A. In all my distress and persecution
I turn my eyes to the heavens
and confidently await as judge the very One
who has already stood trial
in my place before God
and so has removed the whole curse from me.
All his enemies and mine
he will condemn to everlasting punishment:
but me and all his chosen ones
he will take along with him
into the joy and the glory of heaven.
Psalm 121 is a Song of Ascent - one of the psalms that Jewish people traveling to Jerusalem would sing as they walked uphill towards the city with God's temple. As they lifted their eyes toward their destination up in the hills while singing this song, it turned their thoughts away from the fatigue of their journey and toward the one who would not let their foot slip and was keeping them from all harm: the maker of heaven and earth.
They sang of the God who stayed awake, watching over His children throughout the long nights as they slept. That same God shaded them during the heat of the day.
This same God who watched over His faithful covenant people thousands of years ago as they ascended His holy mountain to worship continues to watch over your life, both now and forever more.
This Psalm is a beautiful reminder of God's care and providence in any context, but especially so as we come to it as we're being reminded that Christ will return to judge the living and the dead. It might often seem that even though God has promised to watch over you and guard you, that the mountain that stands between you and Him is too steep to climb.
Notice in our catechism passage today that the coming judgment of Christ is not presented in a way that magnifies His mighty vengeance on all of His enemies, but rather the focus is on the fact that Christ descended the mountain so that in Him you could ascend the unclimbable mountain into God's presence. The curse of the coming judgment has been removed you and you have no reason to fear its coming.
Yet you will continue to endure "distress and persecution" until Christ returns or calls you home. The path will seem slippery and the sun will bear down during the day and the nights will be long. In all this, add Psalm 121 to the soundtrack of your life. Like the Israelites of long ago, keep your eyes looking up to the heavens, knowing your help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth who sent His Son down to earth that you might be lifted up to Him.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: I lift my eyes unto the mountains- where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Thank God you have been delivered from judgment and pray that He will continue to watch over your life.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Matthew 26