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Psalm 125: Surrounded by Strength

Supper Table Psalms
By Zach Dietrich

This spring, Pastor Zach began a new series of short family devotions that you can read along with Soteria’s psalm of the month. The Dietrich family calls them Supper Table Psalms because they just so happen to read psalms at suppertime, but each family is different. Whether it’s in the morning at breakfast or in the evening at suppertime, during family time in the living room or before lights out at bedtime, make moments to read God’s word together. As we consider June’s psalm ​​– Psalm 125 ​​– read it one more time with your family and consider how God surrounds his children with strength.

“Will I live or die?” thought Queen Esther as she stood before the royal throne of the king, waiting and wondering if her plan to save Israel would work. In Persia in that day, if anyone ​​– even the queen herself – went “to the king inside the inner court without being called, there is but one law—to be put to death.” That is, everyone “except the one to whom the king holds out the golden scepter so that he may live” (Esther 4:11). 

Do you know what a scepter is? A scepter is a rod or a staff that shows power and authority. How do you picture a scepter? Maybe it has fancy letters or gems or is decoratively carved wood. King Ahasuerus’ scepter was golden.

Who holds a scepter? A ruler holds a scepter. Kings hold scepters. What kind of ruler holds the scepter in Psalm 125? “For the scepter of wickedness….” He is a wicked king! An evil ruler! Psalm 125 helps us pray and rest in God’s security, even when kings are evil.

Can you think of evil kings in the Bible? King Nebuchadnezzar commanded that everyone bow before the golden statue or be burned in a fiery furnace. But, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did not give in. 

Even many of Israel’s kings who should have been righteous used their scepters wickedly. The Bible says that King Ahab, who murdered righteous men and worshiped Baal, did more evil than any before him. Until King Jesus comes and rules with perfect rule, there will be wicked rulers.

When the scepter is wicked, good people may grow tired of doing good. You may wonder, “Is it worth it? Am I strong enough not to keep my hands from stretching to evil?” So, you pray what Jesus teaches you to pray: “Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.” 

When the pressure is strong, we are surrounded by something far stronger. As mountains surround a city, so the Lord surrounds his people. Psalm 125 assures you that the scepter of wickedness will never be so powerful that believers will have to give up. When the king commands you to bow to him and everyone else bows, God will surround you, secure you, and make you stronger than an immovable mountain.

“Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever” (Psalm 125:1).

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