When he realizes the fantastic success of practical people, the writer is strongly tempted to abandon his faith. The rich and powerful have it all now; no seeming need to refer to any god. Earlier the writer says: my feet almost slipped – an image of walking on a narrow path, losing one’s balance, and falling.
Now he affirms: God, you are holding me even when I was an unthinking this-world-only being, not remembering your promises and your power. “I was like an animal before you.” Now he realizes, in this unrolling meditation that sees him restored, that even his foolishness was in God’s hand. The Spirit kept him, we see in the light of the New Testament. Even as a beast before you, I am continuously before you (same Hebrew word for “before” or some translations, “with.”
Not only my brain, not only my thoughts; you Lord have taken my right hand bodily to physically guide me and keep me from pitching off the road.
What a great, great assurance. For in-Christ people, the spirit of Christ himself lives within. Talk about a “paraclete,” a Comforter, one who comes alongside (John 15-17).
Photo credit “Guard Rail and Grass Woodstock Vermont,” Christopher Sessums via Flickr, license Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)