Tuesday, August 21

The Lord is my Helper

Scripture: Jeremiah 21, 24, 27, Psalm 118, 1 John 2

Psalm 118:6-7 The Lord is for me; I will not be afraid.  What can a mere mortal do to me?  The Lord is my helper.  Therefore, I will look in triumph on those who hate me.


The psalmist is thanking God for His help and salvation.  

Many verses from this psalm are quoted in the New Testament, including these two verses that are quoted in Hebrews 13:6 “So we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?’”

“The Lord is my helper.”  This jumped out because of a conversation I had yesterday about Genesis 2:18, where the Lord said, “It is not good for man to be alone, so I will make a helper corresponding to him.”  The word “helper” is used there of the woman toward the man.  But this Hebrew word (ezer, same word in Genesis 2 and Psalm 118) is most often used of God as our helper.  


The Lord is my helper.  

Often we use the word helper in a reduced sense.  “You are daddy/mommy’s little helper.”  If you are a helper, it means that someone important is doing something and you are there to serve or help them.  You are less than the person you are helping: less strong, less capable, less important.  When Genesis 2:18 is read through this lens, it seems that man is important and the woman was made only to help him, to serve him.  

But that idea is not inherent in the word.  In fact, because the word ezer is used primarily of God as our helper, just the opposite is true.  God our Helper is greater than us, stronger than us, more capable than us.  We are the weak ones needing His strength and help.  Thus, the word ezer is a noble word, a strong and dignified word.  One who is stronger comes to help one who is weaker.  

To say that a woman is a helper to a man is not to make her less than the man.  To the contrary, it means that she is stronger in some ways, able to complement and help him.  It is not a derogatory term that reduces her; it is a complimentary term that elevates and honors her.  

The Lord is my Helper.  I need Him!  My wife is my helper.  I need her too.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for being my Helper, my Strength and Song and Salvation (118:14).  I honor You for helping me in my weakness, and for giving me a wife to do the same!