It is with bold confidence that we can place our hope in His mercy, knowing He delivers our souls from death and keeps us alive in famine (vss. 20-21). It is with confidence that our souls are able to wait patiently for the Lord; for He alone is our help and our shield. Only then will our hearts not fall into disappointment, despair and fear; but will rather rejoice in Him. Our hope will be God through Jesus Christ; it is he alone that provides our living hope.
“Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His mercy, to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.” (Psalm 33:18-19, NKJV)
People are looking for hope in these troubled times. Sadly, too many, are looking in all the wrong places or should in the wrong person(s) or ideology. If one’s hope is not in God and His mercy, then it will be a vain hope, a false hope.
Only God can deliver us from our enemies in this world and in the spiritual realm. We are seeking to be rescued from corrupt policies or evil politicians of our day by a strong individual who will lead us out of the darkness that is quickly engulfing our days. However, we can take comfort in this truth: “No king is saved by the multitude of an army. A mighty man is not delivered by great strength. A horse is a vain hope for safety; neither shall it deliver any by its great strength” (Psalm 33:16-17). Though God may use an army and/or the might of a strong man, such as Samson, to deliver us and our nation from the evil and corruption of our day; it is ultimately God who delivers us from our enemies as He works His perfect will for the good of His people and His glory.
Our hope, therefore, must be in God. Our hope must be in His mercy. What we really deserve is the full weight of His wrath. But He is a merciful God who does not show mercy at the expense of His justice. In His mercy, He sent Jesus Christ to make full satisfaction to divine justice. By placing our hope in God’s mercy, He is mighty to save us from the misery of our sin, and from the tyranny of wicked rulers who exalt themselves above the law, who abuse their positions for their own personal gain.
The Lord God is the only One who can save us from tyranny. He is the only One who can lift the foot of oppression from our necks. He is the only One who delivers us from the enemies of freedom. They are not satisfied with suppressing the truth; they promulgate lies concerning the realities of our day. Their minds are engulfed in darkness and censure the truth being proclaimed by faithful people.
By the truth proclaimed by faithful believers, God exposes those who sit in darkness. Those living in darkness practice their sinful ways unrepentantly and revel it. People are looking for signs of deliverance from the darkness that has overtaken this world but find no relief on their own.
It is difficult to discern the difference between truth and error; to discern between what is a well-founded hope and a pseudo-hope in which to place one’s confidence. We tend to place our hope in pseudo-hope because it knows what we want to hear. It tickles our ears with words that calm our fears for the moment. Putting one’s hopes and dreams in a person, the military, or some other worldly object is a formula for discouragement.
Our solutions to the issues of the day are not really solutions at all. They only serve to deepen our hopelessness and despair and elevate a few to control the many. The question then is, In whom or what should you place your hope? We find the answer in the Bible. In Psalm 33 we find in whom we are to put our hope: the Lord God.
We also find the well-grounded reason why we should hope in God. In fact, most of the Psalm is devoted to telling us why He is our only hope; not just in this life but also in the life to come. From verses 4-15, we see that the Lord is the Mighty One, who speaks all things into existence and sets the boundaries of the heavens and the waters of the earth by the power of His word. He speaks and it is done. Also, His counsel stands, making man’s plans of no effect (vs. 10). Everything God has purposed will be accomplished and no one man or scheme will be able to thwart this purpose.
It is with bold confidence that we can place our hope in His mercy, knowing He delivers our souls from death and keeps us alive in famine (vss. 20-21). It is with confidence that our souls are able to wait patiently for the Lord; for He alone is our help and our shield. Only then will our hearts not fall into disappointment, despair and fear; but will rather rejoice in Him. Our hope will be God through Jesus Christ; it is he alone that provides our living hope. He alone is our assured hope of salvation and everlasting life, guaranteed through His atoning death and His resurrection. It is this Jesus who now sits at the right hand of the Father in heaven and who possesses all authority and power over all thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, both in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible (Ephesians 1:20-23; Colossians 1:16; 2:15). He is Sovereign over all things, over all nations and people; He upholds “all things by the word of His power” (Hebrews 1:3).
In uncertain, fearful and troubling times, find your true hope by praying with the psalmist: “Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, just as we hope in You” (Psalm 33:22).
Richard Stetler is a Minister in the Reformed Church, US and is the CEO of Reformation Gospel Ministries.