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This is an extremely comforting psalm: a psalm about protection, victory and eternal glory. I call it the Time of Trouble psalm, because it refers mainly to the protection afforded YaHuWaH 's people during the terrifying world-wide events scheduled to occur just prior to His Son's return. In other words, this psalm concerns the very near future. It is about to be fulfilled. That being the case, every believer should prayerfully study it; because it offers hope in an otherwise hopeless world. It is one of the key psalms in all Scripture; a psalm one should read over and over and over again: and, if possible, memorize. Before we examine its contents let us read it through, for it is a comparatively short psalm.
|He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2: I will say of YaHuWaH, He is my refuge and my fortress: my Elohim; in Him will I trust.
3: Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
4: He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust: His truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
5: Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
6: Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
7: A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.
8: Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.
9: Because thou hast made YaHuWaH, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;
10: There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
11: For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
12: They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
13: Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.
14: Because he hath set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known My Name.
15: He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honor him.
16: With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him My salvation.
You will notice that the blessings mentioned in this psalm are directed at a particular type of person: blessings which are guaranteed during a great Time of Trouble because certain conditions have been met. This means that when the period of this psalm's fulfillment arrives, and that day is almost upon us, then the promises listed in Psalm 91 will be fulfilled. But I repeat, these promises are conditional: they will only apply to believers who have met the requirements introduced in the first verse.
In ancient days the "secret place of the Most High" was symbolized by a certain place within YaHuWaH 's earthly Tabernacle. It was called the 'holy place:' and particularly the 'most holy place,' where the Almighty sat enthroned. In that 'most holy place' was the ark of the covenant: a symbol of the Almighty's throne and His mercy. Within the ark of the covenant were YaHuWaH 's Ten Commandments. The real tabernacle is, of course, above; but we can learn a lot about that heavenly place by studying the earthly shadow below: and particularly what lay in that earthly tabernacle below.
What does it mean to dwell in that sacred and secret place? It means to have absolute faith in the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Israel and to live by the requirements of His eternal Torah. This thought about dwelling in the secret place of the Most High is also expressed in Psalm 27.
|YaHuWaH is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? YaHuWaH is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
2: When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
3: Though an army should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.
4: One thing have I desired of YaHuWaH, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of YaHuWaH all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of YaHuWaH, and to inquire in His temple.
5: For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion: in the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me; He shall set me up upon a rock.
6: And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in His tabernacle sacrifices of joy;
I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto YaHuWaH.
Throughout Scripture a 'rock' is used as a symbol of YAHUSHUA the Messiah the only begotten Son of YaHuWaH. He is the 'rock' on which we believers build our spiritual lives. He is the 'rock' in which we hide. He is the 'rock' of our salvation.
|2 Samuel 22:2
|And he said, YaHuWaH is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer;
3: The Elohim of my rock; in Him will I trust: He is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my savior; Thou savest me from violence.
|YaHuWaH liveth; and blessed be my Rock; and exalted be the Elohim of the Rock of my salvation.
|YaHuWaH is my Rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my Elohim, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.
|YaHuWaH liveth; and blessed be my Rock; and let the Elohim of my salvation be exalted.
Again, these promises only apply to those who have living faith in YAHUSHUA - the Rock of our salvation. Living faith is faith that is expressed in obedience to the Ten Commandments within YaHuWaH 's Torah: the Ten Commandments which are within the 'most holy and secret place.' To this obedient group the promises of Psalm 91 apply: and to no others. Let us now examine how that protection will take effect.
Just as there are specific conditions for deliverance (faith and obedience), so too there are specific dangers from which obedient believers will be delivered in the Time of Trouble. These dangers are listed in Psalm 91:
|Satan's Trap: verse 3
|Surely He shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler.
|Attack: verse 5
|... and from the arrow that flieth by day.
|Plague: verse 6
|... and from the pestilence that walketh in darkness.
|Accident: verse 11
|For He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
12: They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Against these and other dangers (rejection, slander and persecution.) we believers have little defense other than YaHuWaH the Almighty Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Israel. All we can do of our own accord is to be aware of these dangers and by faith endeavor to keep the Almighty's Torah. This twin approach of faithful obedience coupled with fervent prayer attracts YaHuWaH 's protection and blessing. I tell you: there is no other safeguard against last-day perils.
|He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust:
His truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
Those who trust and obey the Almighty will not only be protected during the Time of Trouble, but will, during the coming millennium, (not the year 2000, but at the Savior's return) be raised to positions of high rank.
|Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high ... I will deliver him, and honor him.
Many in the church hesitate to spread the truth. Like the ancient Israelites who entered the Promised Land we have all miserably failed to do great things for YaHuWaH ; somehow imagining that mighty exploits and victories are not possible in this day and age, and certainly not through us. How wrong we are. Psalm 91 tells us that YaHuWaH is inviting His obedient people to attempt the seemingly impossible, to call on Him and He will answer. The psalm goes on to say that not only will YaHuWaH answer prayer, but that He will honor His obedient followers with an honor we can hardly imagine. See our article about Answers to Prayer.
|He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him, I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him, and honor him. (Note those words: I will, I will, I will)
|And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their Elohim shall be strong, and do exploits.
33: And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil, many days.
Notice also that the very ones who 'do exploits' and 'instruct many' fall by the sword, by captivity and by spoil many days. Is this a contradiction of the protection promised in Psalm 91? No it isn't: for the fact is, though multitudes of obedient believers will be supernaturally protected during the Time of Trouble, many leaders will be martyred! Certainly those who oppose the Antichrist will be beheaded!
|And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of YAHUSHUA, and for the word of YaHuWaH, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Messiah a thousand years.
The time has now come to take YaHuWaH 's truth to all nations. To be sure many of the leaders who expose Satan's deception will be martyred, but they will rise at the resurrection to occupy positions of high rank and honor. In any event the church as a whole will not be wiped out. There is going to be a significant number of believers who will live through the Time of Trouble no matter what Satan does to destroy them. This is good news!
YaHuWaH, the Elohim of Israel, is going to carry out His plan for the deliverance, sanctification and glorification of His people. His reasons for doing so are listed in this psalm.
|"Because He hath set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him:
I will set him on high, because he hath known My Name."
To know the Almighty's Name doesn't mean to know that He is called YaHuWaH or that His Son is called YAHUSHUA. The Devils know all these Names, but it avails them nothing. To know YaHuWaH 's Name means to live in accordance with His will; to be in tune with all that His Name stands for. It means to live by His commandments and to be holy! To know YaHuWaH 's Name is to exhibit His character in your life! A clinical knowledge of His Name or how it is spelled or pronounced counts for nothing if personal holiness is lacking. For more details see Sacred Names.
We are told that many believers will meet the conditions mentioned in Psalm 91 just prior to the Savior's return. Though living in a time of extraordinary danger, these promises of protection, blessing and honor are given for their encouragement. Moreover, some of their number, (and you and I could be amongst them) are scheduled to attempt - and succeed - in doing amazing exploits! Selah. Pause and take note of that fact. Oh what a glorious future awaits all who really believe this psalm. They will do great things for YaHuWaH, who will then raise them to positions of high authority and glory in the ages to come. They will then go on through eternity to understand and appreciate the manifold wonders of salvation through YAHUSHUA the Messiah, the only begotten Son of YaHuWaH. I list some of those promises for our mutual benefit.
Verses 15-16 are of particular importance:
What about you? Do you believe this Psalm? Do you think that you are approaching the time of its fulfillment and that it could even apply to you? If you do believe, then prepare for great things ahead. Too many Christians imagine that they cannot do anything for Elohim. How wrong they are. The fact is that every believer - no matter how insignificant they may think they are - can do much to further the cause of Truth. Let me list two vitally important things you - yes you - can do. You can:
These two things are possible for every believer - every day. They cost nothing and they could lead to many souls being saved. So go to it. Begin to pray as you have never done before and testify of the Savior's love for humanity.