Psalm 46:1-3, 6-7, 9-10 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. … Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts. The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. … He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear, he burns the shields with fire. “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
The M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan that I use to find a TQW verse each day includes Psalm 46 today. It is a wonderful Psalm for present circumstances, and I have therefore included a longer passage than usual. (I was tempted to include all 11 verses, but I will leave it to you to read the whole Psalm).
It has a very powerful message for us. Why is the cosmos God created and ‘saw that it was VERY GOOD’ (Genesis 1:31) in such a terrible mess? You might be surprised to find there are TWO reasons.
The first is more obvious: Man was the very pinnacle of all Creation, and HE decided to run the world HIS way instead of following the ‘Maker’s Instructions’. “In Adam’s fall falls every man, with every gift the Father gave; the crown of all creation’s plan becomes a rebel and a slave. Herein all woes are brought to birth, all aching hearts and sunless skies; brightness is gone from all the earth, the innocence of nature dies.” (Timothy Dudley-Smith).
The second is less obvious: It is contained in a phrase in verse 8: Among the ‘works of the LORD’ the Psalmist invites us to ‘come and see’, are “the desolations HE HAS BROUGHT on the earth”! All the troubles we experience are part of God’s PLAN A, because it includes the sending of his own Son to give HIS LIFE as a sin offering, in our place, to REDEEM us. The Apostle John declared him to be “the Lamb that was SLAIN FROM THE CREATION OF THE WORLD”. (Revelation 13:8 & 17:8)!
Therefore if we really, and personally, KNOW God in this way, how foolish it would be NOT to “Be STILL”. The Hebrew verb, ‘be still’, means to relax totally, to cease from struggle, to stop striving, and to hand everything over to someone else with full and absolute confidence in their power and ability to handle the whole situation – the sort of thing we need to do if a life saver is rescuing us from drowning in the surf – the more we struggle the less likely we are to be saved!
Let us remember the Apostle Paul’s words: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, WILL guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)