By Pastor Vinnie Cappetta
"Surrounded by God"
The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them.
This verse jumped off the page at me this past week. Let’s face it…during the last few weeks many of us have felt surrounded by either fear, uncertainty, anger, and distress or all of them. What a comfort to know that it may seem like we are surrounded by these things, but in reality, we are surrounded by the angel of the Lord. I am not sure if this angel is an appearance of Jesus in the Old Testament or some other angel, but the message is clear to me. God, through this angel, is surrounding his people! He guards, defends and camps around them. He circles the wagons so to speak.
- John tells us that Jesus dwelt or “tabernacled” among us. In our slang, we might say he “pitched his tent” in our world (John 1:14). The people of Israel encamped around the tabernacle but in Psalm 34:7, God encamps around them. And in Jesus, God encamps around us. He “neighbors” us.
- Psalm 91:11 reveals that God commands his angels concerning us to guard us in all our ways.
- In Job 1:10, we see God placing a hedge around Job and his family.
- In 2 Kings 6:17, God opens the spiritual eyes of Elisha’s servant so that he can see the Lord’s army of angels standing by to protect him.
- The Hebrew children experienced God’s protection in the fiery furnace.
- Daniel experienced this protection in the lion’s den.
- Stephen experienced God’s presence while he was being stoned.
My prayer is that during this time when it can feel like we are surrounded by a great many overwhelming emotions, that you will sense the presence of God surrounding you. Take a moment to draw near to God right now. Let him know that you want to fear him and give him the reverence he deserves. Thank him for being all around you. Draw near to him and he will draw near to you.