Psalm 46 - God, Refuge and Strength of Peoples




[New International Version] Psalm 46 belongs to Book II of the Book of Psalms. It is a prayer of praise to the graces of God and the city of Jerusalem.

The PS 46 belong to Book II of the book of PS composed of a collection of texts 150 arranged by 5 poetry books. The Book of Psalms, for its wisdom and basic principles of human action , is considered the heart of the Old Testament. Book II comprises the PS 42 the 72 . The PS 46 is divided into 12 verses.

The Psalms are poems-prayers addressed to God, being the privileged way to address and speak to Him. These prayers represent human experiences and religious conscience . They portray the common man , with his faults, insecurities, fears and hopes and, even today, we can identify with the Psalmist and draw inspiration from these texts to pray and plead with God when we feel lost and anguished or to express our gratitude for some blessing received.

“There are enemies or friends, there is life or death, health or illness, pain or joy and, most of the time, there are no changes or gradations. Words are like stones and poetry like boulders carved by chisel”; “The Psalms are a bit like mountain paths, simple, especially when walking on snow, but they lead to the peaks; they are paths toward the peaks of meeting the Lord.” - Carlo Maria Martini, Cardinal of Milan

Psalm 46 - God, Refuge and Strength

1  To the director. From the sons of Koré, in soprano.
Song .

2  God is a refuge and strength for us, He
has always been a help in distress.

3  Therefore we are not afraid, though the earth trembles,
and the mountains fall to the bottom of the seas,

4  causing its waters to roar and stir,
shaking the mountains with its fury.

5  A river with its canals rejoices the city of God,
the holiest of the abodes of the Most High.

6  God is in the midst of her; will not let her waver.
God will help her from the break of dawn.

7  The peoples are rioting, the kingdoms are in turmoil;
but He makes his voice echo and the earth trembles.

8  The Lord of hosts is with us;
Jacob’s God is our stronghold.

9  Come and behold the works of the Lord,
the awesome things He has done on earth.

10  He stops wars to the ends of the world;
breaks bows, smashes swords
and burns shields in fire.

11  Surrender yourselves! Recognize that I am God: I will
rule over peoples; I will rule over the earth.

12  The Lord of hosts is with us;
Jacob’s God is our stronghold.

Meaning and interpretation

The PS 46 is the first in the list of Ps  Zion  (48; 76; 84; 87; 122). The name Zion is an alternative name for the city of Jerusalem . This name was heavily loaded with symbolic dimensions , articulated with the fact that Jerusalem is seen as the city of Yahweh (national god of the kingdoms of  Israel  and  Judah ). This is one of the many other reasons why Jerusalem is seen as impregnable . This Psalm seems to be the expression of a new cosmogony that God carries out from Jerusalem.

The Psalms of Praise are really hymns addressed, above all, to God. In this sense, the Bible continues the liturgical literature of neighboring and previous religions, where hymns are the most common way for people to address the divinity, especially in contexts of greater solemnity.

These hymns narrate the greatness or improvements and the thanks that flow from it. Examples of this are Psalm 8; 19; 28; 33; 47; 65-66; 93; 96-100; 104-105; 111; 113; 117; 135; 146; 148-150. Hymns can also be addressed to the king, focusing especially on the ceremony of royal enthronement, with every expectation of divine intervention for the well-being of the people and the just ordering of the world .

With the end of the monarchy, these Psalms were accentuating messianic connotations , which they already had implicit. This is the case with Psalm 2; 18; 20-21; 45; 72; 89; 101; 110; 132; 144. The Psalms celebrating Jerusalem, which with the temple have a special connection to God, are also considered hymns. These are Ps 46; 48; 76; 84; 87; 122.

The Book of Psalms

The Joy and Happiness of the Righteous in Communion with God

The Psalms are prayer-poems addressed to God, being the privileged way to address and speak to Him. Depicting the common man , with his failures, insecurities, fears and hopes, we can still identify with the Psalmist and be inspired today in Psalms to make prayers and supplications to God in times of trouble or express our gratitude for some blessing received.

The Psalms, despite being written in Antiquity, still move , sensitize , awaken feelings , inspire and enchant . In them, we can identify anguish and joy , deeply human feelings, praises, supplications, teachings of reflection on spiritual wisdom and prophetic words.

Written for different situations , some Psalms are intimate, revealing the author’s personal relationship with God; others provide guidelines and advice for life, others are compositions for specific liturgical events such as rituals and pilgrimages.

The Book of Psalms is composed of a collection of 150 poetic texts and is divided into five parts, called Psalm Books or Booklets. Each Book closes with short hymns of praise to God . The division into five parts was considered to correspond to the five books of Moses and it is assumed that each passage in the Pentateuch (first five books of the Bible, called Torah by the Jews) was read in parallel with the corresponding Psalm. Its main forms are lamentation , supplication , praise and gratitude .

The Power of Prayer in Dialogue with the Divine

The Psalms elevate our thoughts to the Divine and prayer is the power of the word . Prayer is the language of faith. Any thought, word or image addressed to God is called prayer . It is through it that we come into contact with our God within and, therefore, it is so powerful in transforming life . Prayer can produce miracles , turn dreams into reality, give us hope for change , harmony and peace with ourselves and the world.

Each Psalm has an intention that helps us meditate and walk with our God . For many theologians, the Book of Psalms has a prophetic or messianic tone as its verses refer to the coming of Christ into the world of men to guide them through the uncertainty and doubts of Human existence.

The prayer has the power to call the Spiritual Universe full mode, honest, sincere, conscious, for the purpose of spiritual self-protection, family protection and those who are dear to us, to have peace of mind, spiritual and physical, for prosperity and success, to protect health and relationships, to ward off negative energies and, above all, to connect us to something bigger than ourselves. From this peace , well-being, hope and goodness in front of everyone and everything result.

The faith can change our lives. It gives us tranquility and spiritual strength to face challenges. It helps us to meditate on our mission in life and to create a balanced and healthy environment for ourselves and those we love. When you pray, fill your heart with love and determination . The Psalms will guide you on a path of peace and communion with the higher energy.