Don’t Be Afraid

Key Verse: “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.  My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”
—Psalm 121:1, 2

Selected Scripture:
Psalm 23:1-6

THE PREVIOUS TWO lessons from the Book of Psalms considered the topics: “The Right Way,” and “Live in Hope,” as positive directions in the lives of the Lord’s people. This third lesson entitled “Don’t Be Afraid” will focus on some of the anxieties faced by Christians in this end of the Gospel Age and the need to put our trust and faith in God.

There is growing fear and anxiety amongst the human family in these very stressful and troublous times, but the child of God is encouraged to lift up his eyes, as our Key Verse states, and seek help from above. The Lord’s people are directed to put their trust in him, and in his willingness to help and guide us in our every time of need.

There should be no cause for uneasiness if we have put our trust in God. The psalmist assures us (Ps. 121:3-7) that he that watches and cares for us neither slumbers, nor sleeps. He is the keeper of those who seek him; He will not permit the sun to smite his people in the daytime nor the moon by night, and he promises to preserve his children from all evil. “The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.”—vs. 8

One of the best-known psalms is included in this lesson’s selected scripture reading. God is likened to a shepherd who cares for his people. David acknowledges, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” (Ps. 23:1) Those who recognize and appreciate this special relationship with God need never be anxious or uneasy about their spiritual care and growth. By using the shepherd as a symbol, the writer aptly illustrates the tender and loving care that God provides for his children. A good shepherd is known and loved by his flock, and they put their trust in him.

We further read, “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (vss. 2,3) Symbolic language lends expression and illustration to God’s providential care as the Divine shepherd. To ‘lie down in green pastures’ suggests the rest of faith and spiritual refreshment experienced by all who share in this relationship. We are led by the Eternal God to the pure, living waters of life, and shielded from every foe and whatever danger may arise. We have been justified to newness of life, and our pathway has been marked out for us through the wonderful word of Truth. This is our experience because we trust in the merit of the shed blood of Jesus on our behalf.

The psalmist reminds us that although we are walking in the valley of the shadow of death because of our consecration, we have no cause for fear because God’s providence is exercised on our behalf. We are feasting at the table of spiritual food prepared for us at this end of the Gospel Age, and our cup is running over.—vss. 4,5

Our lesson’s admonition to not be afraid has taken on new meaning and perspective as we approach the end of the present age. Let us not lose sight of the promise that, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.”—vs. 6

Dawn Bible Students Association
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