“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1
There is a strategy, a great principle for facing the battles and conflicts of life in the 27th psalm, condensed by Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones in the following words: “Always start with heaven and with God, and then come down to face the problems on earth, as you find them in the light of what you have already seen through God’s light”.
Never start with man, never begin with an earthly perspective. Many failures are the result of starting at the wrong place to find a solution.
Why do we start with God? The first thing we notice in the first few verses is the psalmist’s overwhelming confidence and assurance, not in himself, but in God. Let us consider the reasons for this unshakable certainty.
The Lord is his light. Light is the opposite of darkness and despair, and in the light, we see things clearly. When we are in the midst of trials, we grope in darkness: we have limited understanding, and we blindly grapple for human solutions. But we can look up to heaven and to God for light and understanding, for the Lord shows us another way, another kind of life, a way out of darkness. For He Himself is the light in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ who proclaimed, “I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” John 8:12
The light of life. The radiance that illuminates our pathways as we live our lives on earth. What a tremendous promise and assurance!
The Lord is his salvation. When we turn to God, He guarantees our welfare, by showing us the way of escape. Through Christ, God delivers us out of the kingdom of darkness and translates us into the kingdom of light. It is a glorious transformation: despite the presence of sufferings, we are rescued out of the stronghold of tyrannical darkness, in understanding and in spirit, and we are elevated to a position of peace, strength and safety.
The Lord is the strength of his life. In spite of the formidable forces of the enemies of our life and our soul , when we look to God and rely upon Him, we have the confidence of a limitless Power behind us, Whose strength and resources are boundless.
As we look to the Lord before anything else, in whatever circumstance we are in, we ultimately acknowledge Him to be our light, our strength and our salvation. And from this principle flows the wellspring of our confidence and assurance in the face of trials, even at their very worst. Whom then shall we fear, and of whom shall we be afraid?
1 Reference: Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones Sermon, “Seek My Face”