Being Still in the Lord

Posted on April 22, 2021

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By David Ettinger

Beloved Verse
If you are fond of the Psalms, the title of this blog should have taken you to the beloved Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God.”

I won’t do a study of this great Psalm, but I will give you the gist of it: The world is a bad place in which to live, and some periods of time are worse than others. Now is a very bad time.

However, believers in the Lord Jesus Christ need not fret, as verse 1 assures us: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” This truth stated, believers are to react accordingly: “Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea …” (v. 2).

Sadly, many believers do fear, and do so against God’s Word.

More Assurances
In verse 7, God gives His children more assurances: “The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.”

Therefore, despite the madness enveloping our world – especially here in the U.S. – lovers of the Lord Jesus Christ can be assured that God knows exactly what is going on, has His eye on us, and is watching over us.

As our fortress, he protects our souls. He doesn’t promise physical harm will not come to us, but He guarantees us that our eternal souls are secure and untouchable. Such a promise is precious in these deadly days.

Be Still
As such, the Lord in verse 10 tells us how we are to cope in this out-of-control orb upon which we live: “Be still, and know that I am God.”

The English word “still” comes from the Hebrew rah-fah, which has several translations besides “be still.” Rah-fah can also be translated: relax; let drop; abate; abandon; refrain; let alone; be quiet; forsake.

In other words, to “be still” is not simply a matter of “chilling out” and letting the world pass us by, but to put an end to the anxiety, fear, worry, and anger we engage in. The command to “be still,” to rah-fah, is to refrain from negative actions and embrace a more God-trusting attitude.

It is no wonder the NASB translates this verse as “Stop striving and know that I am God.” The Holman Bible says “Stop fighting – and know that I am God.” The Jewish Bible says, “Desist, and know that I am God.” All spot-on.

Where’s the Stillness?
But to be quite frank, when I peruse my Christian friends’ social-media pages, I don’t see much stillness or desisting. I see raging – raging against the recent elections; raging against our political leaders; raging against vaccinations.

But where’s the Christian stillness ­– the peace that comes from belonging to the Lord Jesus Christ and the rest that should characterize our lives? Isn’t this what Psalm 46:10 is calling for?

If you were to whittle Psalm 46:10 down to its core, you would be left with verses 1, 7, and 10, which read: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. [Therefore] be still, and know that I am God.”

The days in which we live are bleak indeed, but Christians need to cope with them. What better way to do so than by heeding the soaring command of Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God”!