The Lord IS!

Slow down, Mark. 

I follow a blog written by Alan Falding, a man from California who is deeply into the disciplines of spiritual formation and direction. His recent post was based on Psalm 28:7-9:

The Lord is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy,
and with my song I praise him.

The Lord is the strength of his people,
a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.
Save your people and bless your inheritance;
be their shepherd and carry them forever.

Falding makes a point that in this psalm, David keeps saying “The Lord is.” Not “the Lord was” or “I hope the Lord is.” When we are stressed and hurried and too busy this is a very comforting thought for me.

I thought I might check this out in Hebrew and was not surprised to see that the verb “is” must be supplied by the translators. The divine name of God, YHWH, is used here, and it means something like “The One Who Is.” A Krause rendering might be “The One Who Is: Strength and Shield … The One Who Is: Strength of His People.” I need to be strong in my life, to be sure, but I don’t need to be strong alone. And just now, as I write this, I feel encouraged, my heart leaps for joy too.

Mark Krause
Nebraska Christian College

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