Yesterday in a devotional session before we got into talking about Bible translation strategy, a colleague led a meditation on Psalm 91. This is one of those passages which I must have read hundreds of times, but once again, I was struck by how the Bible always seems to have something new. The bit I was struck by was verses 3 & 4:
3 Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare
and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
The image of God covering us with his wings, as a mother hen protects her chicks is a touching one. But hang on – what is he protecting us from? A fowler, a bird hunter. If someone is coming to hunt birds for the pot, a chicken sitting on the ground covering her chicks is hardly in a safe spot! And so it is with our God. The almighty protects and saves us, but he does so at huge cost and risk to himself. His protection from the “terror of the night and the arrow that flies by day” comes at the cost of his own suffering on the cross.
We rightly rejoice at God’s protection and care for us – but it comes at a price, and he paid it.