Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
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September 17 – The Strength Of God’s People

“Blessed are those whose strength is in You, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; the early rain also covers it with pools.  They go from strength to strength; each one appears before God in Zion. LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; give ear, O God of Jacob! Selah.” Psalm 84:5-8

Devotional Thought For The Day

The psalmist goes on describing the blessedness of those who are faithful and joyful in worshiping the LORD God of hosts – those who through His precious Word have come to know and believe His great love for us in Christ Jesus, and who have come to love “the dwelling place,” the house of the Lord God, the Living God. Their “strength” for life “is in You” – God, Who He is and His love for us, is our strength.  In whatever we do we have this strength of God with us, and this includes all of the trials, tribulations, burdens, and setbacks of life that we must pass through in this fallen world of sin.  We are always going “from strength to strength” and it is certain and guaranteed by God’s promise to those who believe that “each one appears before God in Zion.”

Such believers, children of God and friends of God, are described as having “the highways to Zion” in their hearts.  This is a rich expression – they know the way to God’s house by heart, they think often about going to God’s house, they have great joy in thinking about being in God’s house, and they are constantly in “the Way” to eternal life, to God’s eternal heavenly home, through faith in Jesus Christ.  Our lifestyle in this world reflects and gives evidence of the “route” we are traveling on – captured, moved, motivated, and informed by God’s great love for us in Christ Jesus and His promises of glory to be revealed in us in the life to come.  No wonder we are described as having great strength in God!

Further, those who have the highways to Zion in their hearts are a great blessing to those around us:  “As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs.”  Regardless of how the various translators and interpreters deal with this difficult verse, three things are expressed: 1] a previously dry and treacherous place, 2] becomes a blessed “place of springs,” 3] when God’s people pass through it. We should remember the importance of having this strength of God as we pass through our lives in this wilderness of sin and sorrow [Valley of Baca = valley of weeping] – not only that we make it through safely ourselves, but also that we may bring relief and nurture by God’s strength to others around us, especially sustaining other believers by the Word God has given us in Holy Scripture [Is. 50:4].

The importance of this is emphasized: “LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; give ear, O God of Jacob!”  May we be among those who love the house of the LORD God of hosts, in whose hearts are the highways to Zion, that this also be our prayer, and that we pray it with the utmost integrity and fervor!

Scripture Cited

Is. 50:4  “The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a Word him who is weary. Morning by morning He awakens; He awakens my ear to hear as those who are taught.”

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, thank You for sustaining us by Your Word, so that we too have come to love Your house.  Thank You for being our strength, and for putting the ways of Your kingdom in our hearts. Grant us strength so that we also may refresh and sustain those around us by the same Word of love that You have given to us.  Amen.