December 09, 2002 Copyright © by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
- 1 A song of ascents. 2 I raise my eyes toward the mountains. From where will my help come?
- My help comes from the LORD, the maker of heaven and earth.
- God will not allow your foot to slip; your guardian does not sleep.
- Truly, the guardian of Israel never slumbers nor sleeps.
- 3 The LORD is your guardian; the LORD is your shade at your righthand.
- By day the sun cannot harm you, nor the moon by night.
- The LORD will guard you from all evil, will always guard your life.
- The LORD will guard your coming and going both now and forever.
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1 [Psalm 121] A blessing given to someone embarking on a dangerous journey whether a soldier going on a campaign or a pilgrim returning home from the temple. People look anxiously at the wooded hills. Will God protect them on their journey (Psalm 121:1)? The speaker declares that God is not confined to a place or a time (Psalm 121:2), that every step is guarded (3-4); night and day (Psalm 121:5-6) God watches over their every movement (Psalm 121:7-8).
2  The mountains: possibly Mount Zion, the site of the temple and hence of safety, but more probably mountains as a place of dangers, causing anxiety to the psalmist.
3 [5-6] The image of shade, a symbol of protection, is apt: God as shade protects from the harmful effects that ancients believed were caused by the sun and moon.
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