Of Shelters and Shadows

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.  Psalm 91:1

You might recognize Psalm 91 as the psalm Satan twisted in the wilderness temptation of Jesus.  Satan has contextual issues.  He got everything out of context in heaven and he has been out of context ever since.  And it is one of his tricks to get us out of context with him.

Satan hauled up verses eleven and twelve as his proof text that Jesus should and could jump from the pinnacle of the temple.  After all, God promised that his very angels would  bear him up.  Go ahead, claim that blessing.

When you pluck the baloney from the midst of the two blessed slices of bread, whatever else you do, you destroy the sandwich.  There are two “because” phrases, one just before and one just after the promise of God’s protection.  In verse nine we find, “Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place.”  In verse fourteen we find, “Because he holds fast to me in love.”  The promise rests in the relationship.  Satan didn’t have it.  Jesus did.

Of course, the very first verse would have been answer enough.  Who abides in that blessed shadow of the Almighty?  The one who dwells in his shelter.  Some want the shadow of his blessing without the effort of dwelling in his tent.  They want the shadow to go where they will, instead of rousing themselves and hastening to the place where the shadow is.  No matter how great we think our faith or how many promises we claim, we are not strong enough to drag the shadow of the Almighty anywhere.

But if we find out where his shelter is and get there, we don’t have to claim or conjure anything.  Where he is, there is his shadow.  Walk with him and you will never be out of it.  Even if the walk takes you through a place where it feels like anything but being borne up by angels, even a place where it feels like something is bearing down on you, like a cross, you will yet be in his shadow.  For the shadow of a cross is the true mark of those who walk with him.

The life of Jesus is the death stroke to all prosperity preaching.  The cross of Jesus is the beginning of a real and enduring relationship with the Most High.

What a fellowship!  What a joy divine!  What a Savior!

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