What I Learned from Psalm 16

1 Keep me safe, O God,
for in you I take refuge.
2 I said to the LORD, “You are my Lord;
apart from you I have no good thing.”

3 As for the saints who are in the land,
they are the glorious ones in whom is all my delight.

4 The sorrows of those will increase
who run after other gods.
I will not pour out their libations of blood
or take up their names on my lips.

5 LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secure.

6 The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance.

7 I will praise the LORD, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.

8 I have set the LORD always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.

9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,

10 because you will not abandon me to the grave,
nor will you let your Holy One see decay.

11 You have made known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Verse 2 in particular, but also the entire psalm, remind me of my life verses: Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.” John 6:68-69

I’ve thought some times of chucking the whole Christianity thing, usually when I was hormonal or disillusioned with someone who claims the name of Christ. (“Now that I am a Christian I do have moods in which the whole thing looks improbable: but when I was an atheist I had moods in which Christianity looked terribly probable.” – C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity) But I never thought about it for long. Who else has the “words of life”? Where else can anyone take refuge? Where else in this world apart from in Christ is there any lasting good thing? What other philosophy or religious dogma is so gloriously improbable (impossible) and at the same so sensible and satisfying?

Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup. You have made my lot secure. I like the boundary lines in my life in Christ, and I’m set to inherit eternal life filled with joy in His presence. Where else can I find anything or anyone that promises life in the presence of my Creator and mercy in the presence of my Judge?

Puddleglum in The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis: “Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things–trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones. Suppose this black pit of a kingdom of yours is the only world. Well, it strikes me as a pretty poor one. And that’s a funny thing when you come to think of it. We’re just babies making up a game, if you’re right. But four babies playing a game can make a play-world which licks your real world hollow. That’s why I’m going to stand by the play-world. I’m on Aslan’s side even if there isn’t any Aslan to lead it. I’m going to live as like a Narnian as I can even if there isn’t any Narnia.”

“I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” –C.S. Lewis, Is Theology Poetry?

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