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INTRODUCTION

The book of Psalms is an invaluable source of guidance to evaluate and grow your relationship with God.  The Psalms offer a foundation to formulate penetrating questions about your relationship with God. 

This article is the second of four articles that present exploratory questions about your relationship with God.  The topics in this second article comprise (1)God as your shield, (2) God is the One who fights your battles and (3) God as the source of your strength.  I hope that by answering these questions, you will encounter God in a more meaningful way.

GOD AS YOUR SHIELD

Introduction

A shield is something that intercepts a projectile to protect the user from harm.  In Ephesians 6:10-24, Paul wrote about putting on the whole armor of God.  In particular, Ephesians 6:16 (HCSB) describes the “shield of faith” to use in “every situation:”

16 In every situation take the shield of faith, and with it you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

Under demonic influence, flaming arrows constantly fly towards every believer.  It is critical for every believer to know that God is their shield.

Let’s ask some questions from Psalms about God as your shield.  When you read these questions, I suggest you open your Bible to the cited passages.

Questions Pertaining to God as Your Shield

Do you sleep well knowing that God is a shield about you?  (Psalm 3:3–6).  

Is God your shield?  (Psalm 7:10). 

Do you call upon God to be your shield?  Notice the multitude of protective functions God provides to a believer.  (Psalm 18:1–3).[i]  

Do you trust in God during those times when you need Him to be your shield?  (Psalm 28:6–7).  

Are you patient to wait on God to be your shield?  (Psalm 33:20–22).  

Do you believe that God provides you with a shield?  (Psalm 35:1–3).   

GOD IS THE ONE WHO FIGHTS YOUR BATTLES

Introduction

Life is full of physical, emotional, and spiritual battles. But, no matter the kind of battle, as a believer, God is there to fight our battles.  Isaiah 41:10 (HCSB) says it well:

10 Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with My righteous right hand.

As recorded in Joshua 23:10 (HCSB), Joshua reminded Israel’s leaders about God providing victory in battle:

10 One of you routed a thousand because the Lord your God was fighting for you, as He promised.

Followers of the Lord Jesus Christ are already conquerors, i.e., victors in battle, per Revelation 21:7 (NET), which reads:

7 The one who conquers will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be my son.

Let’s ask some beneficial questions from Psalms about God who fights your battles.

Questions about God Who Fights Your Battles

Do you fully comprehend the extent to which God contends with those who contend with you?  (Psalm 35:1–10).  

Do you ask God for His grace to stand during the oppressive battles and challenges of life?  (Psalm 56:1–2)   

Do you ask God to train your hands, i.e., prepare you for battle?  Do you ask Him for strength for the battle?  (Psalm 18:34–42).  

Do you live your life keeping in mind that God is strong and mighty in battle?  (Psalm 24:8).

Do you appreciate that God will rescue and protect you from those who attack you in the battles of life?  (Psalm 55:18; 140:7 ).

GOD AS YOUR SOURCE OF STRENGTH

Introduction

All of us need strength to get through life.  According to Ephesians 3:14-19 (NET), we are strengthened through the power of the Holy Spirit:

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father,15 from whom every family in heaven and on the earth is named. 16 I pray that according to the wealth of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inner person, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, so that, because you have been rooted and grounded in love, 18 you may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,19 and thus to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.

Because strength is necessary for the victorious Christian life, let’s ask some questions about God as your source of strength.

Questions from Psalms about God as Your Source of Strength

How does God “gird”[ii] you with strength for the battles in life?  (Psalm 18:32, 39).   

Do you trust in God that He is your strength in the battles and conflicts of life?  (Psalm 28:7–8).   

Do you pray to God that He is to you “a rock of strength?” (Psalm 31:2).   

When you think of God as your strength, do you include Him extracting you from difficult circumstances?  (Psalm 31:4).

Do you at times feel like did the Psalmist in Psalm 31:10?  If so, how important is it that you go to God and ask for strength?  Psalm 31:10 reads:

10 For my life is spent with sorrow And my years with sighing; My strength has failed because of my iniquity, And my body has wasted away.

Do you appreciate that man’s strength alone is insufficient to achieve victory in battle?  (Psalm 33:16–17).   

In those trying times, do you watch for God, who you call “my Strength?” Can you personalize your relationship with God by using the personal pronoun “my?” (Psalm 59:9).  

Do you tell (e. g., sing aloud) others about the strength God provides you?  (Psalm 59:16; 81:1).  

As in Psalm 61:1-3, do you call out to God with passion and intensity to be your tower of strength?  Psalm 61:1-3 (NASB95) reads:

1 Hear my cry, O God; Give heed to my prayer. 2 From the end of the earth I call to You when my heart is faint; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. 3 For You have been a refuge for me, A tower of strength against the enemy.

Do you comprehend the incredible overpowering strength of God, who is the Creator of the universe and all that is in it?  (Psalm 65:5–8).   

Do you experience the strength and power that were given to you by God?  (Psalm 68:35).  

Do you feel blessed that God’s strength is in you, i.e., He strengthens you?  (Psalm 84:5).

Do God’s eternality and sovereignty give you confidence that He can provide you with strength?  (Psalm 93:1–2).

Do you continually (all the time and not only when circumstances are difficult) seek strength from God?  (Psalm 105:4).   

CONCLUSION

One takeaway from these questions is the extent to which God contends with those who content against you.  It is encouraging to consider Psalm 35:1–10 (NASB95), which reads:

1 Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; Fight against those who fight against me. 2 Take hold of buckler and shield And rise up for my help. 3 Draw also the spear and the battle-axe to meet those who pursue me; Say to my soul, “I am your salvation.” 4 Let those be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life; Let those be turned back and humiliated who devise evil against me. 5 Let them be like chaff before the wind, With the angel of the Lord driving them on. 6 Let their way be dark and slippery, With the angel of the Lord pursuing them. 7 For without cause they hid their net for me; Without cause they dug a pit for my soul. 8 Let destruction come upon him unawares, And let the net which he hid catch himself; Into that very destruction let him fall. 9 And my soul shall rejoice in the Lord; It shall exult in His salvation. 10 All my bones will say, “Lord, who is like You, Who delivers the afflicted from him who is too strong for him, And the afflicted and the needy from him who robs him?”

Another takeaway is the truth of God’s eternality and sovereignty per Psalm 93:1–3 (HCSB):

1 The Lord reigns! He is robed in majesty; The Lord is robed, enveloped in strength. The world is firmly established; it cannot be shaken. 2 Your throne has been established from the beginning; You are from eternity. 3 The floods have lifted up, Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their pounding waves.

The fact that God is eternal and sovereign gives confidence that He can give you strength.

If you are reading this post and are not a Christian, unless God intervenes, your eternal destination is hell.  But, your destiny can change. 

Today can be the day of your salvation!  Please see my blog (https://stevebelsheim.com/2020/04/20/for-god-so-loves-you-2/) for a description of how you can be saved.  You can also go to another article at my blog (https://stevebelsheim.com/2020/10/20/there-is-hope-even-when-there-seems-to-be-no-hope-2/ ). 

Please send me any comments to steve@stevebelsheim.com or use the comments feature of the blog.

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Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version) copyright 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.  Used by permission.  The quotations from news sources are fair use.

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Scripture marked “NASB95” are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.”

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[i] Psalm 18:1–3 (NASB95) reads:

1 “I love You, O Lord, my strength.” 2 The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. 3 I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, And I am saved from my enemies.

[ii]  The verb “gird” is not commonly used today.  One resource (Bratcher, R. G., & Reyburn, W. D. (1991). A translator’s handbook on the book of Psalms (p. 179). New York: United Bible Societie ) says that:

The phrase girded me with strength means to make strong (see also verse 39).

Another translation (New Living Translation) reads:

32 God arms me with strength, and he makes my way perfect.