A Mighty Fortress — Midweek Message
by Abiding Love
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. The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.Psalm 46:1-3, 11
Fires raged through California, storm after storm formed in the Gulf, and the Coronavirus pandemic almost stopped the world completely. We have seen extraordinary events. In addition to witnessing these natural disasters, we have felt the strain that comes with a struggling economy, job insecurity or loss, and the emotional and physical separation from family and friends.
It has felt as though the world might be falling down around us. And, in a way, it is! Sometimes we call these tragic experiences of nature “pictures of the end times”. We know that this world will not last forever, and that sin will always be a part of it. We know that we, and all people born into this world, will never be able to live the perfect life that we would need to live to go to heaven. Only Jesus lived that perfect life, for us. He earned our way to heaven.
Why doesn’t God stop the fires and storms? And couldn’t he rid the world of disease at one command? Yes, he could. Yet there is a purpose when he doesn’t. We are reminded of our own sinfulness and the sins of this world when he does not stop the hardships that come our way. God does not promise that we will never experience tragedy in this life, but we do know that God keeps every promise that he does make. God promises to be our shield in this world and to bring us to the next, our final home in heaven.
So God says in the Psalm that even though the world will not last, we will not be afraid. God is always with us, he is our fortress, or refuge, our strength. We look forward to the day when Jesus will take us home with him in heaven and we can leave all the pain and destruction behind forever.
The hymn “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” was written based on Psalm 46. We thank God for protecting us from harm, for giving us his Word, and sending his son, Jesus, to win heaven for us. Listen to some of the words from this timeless hymn: “And do what they will-hate, steal, hurt or kill—Though all may be gone, Our victory is won! The kingdom’s ours forever.”
God is our fortress! He is with us, though the world may crumble around us. Although there is evil and destruction in this world, “though all may be gone”, God has won the battle over sin for us. He has won the victory for us and freely gives us his kingdom, heaven.
Prayer:Dear God, our Mighty Fortress, thank you for giving us the comfort of your Word in this Psalm during the challenging times of this world. Help us to remember that you are our refuge, you are our strength, and that you will always help in times of trouble. Amen.
Staff Minister Ben Mahnke
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