The Lord is our shield, and our faith is how we hold it up as protection against the “flaming darts of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16). Without God, we have no hope. Hope in His word is not a wish, but a sure conviction and assurance that it means what it says, and that God’s promises are true (Romans 5:5). There is no shame for trusting in the Father.
Hope and faith are inextricably woven into our shield of protection. As long as we hold fast to it, we can withstand any assault against us. This year seems to be the year of assaults. A worldwide pandemic, nationwide protests and riots, and individual job losses and uncertainty definitely challenge our faith if we are not well armed with the promises of God. The Father will hold us up and keep us spiritually safe no matter what the world throws at us. Our responsibility is to stay true to His statutes and build up a strong defense.
There is another reason to be perpetually prepared to hold tightly to the full armor of God. The first 7 verses of this part of Psalm 119 proclaim God’s protection of the faithful, but the last acknowledges fear of God’s judgment. If the psalmist has faith, why does he fear?
God is holy, perfect in all His ways and only He is righteous to save. If our faith is misdirected to our intellect, our creativity, our humanity, or our policies, we will be subject to the judgment on those things; they cannot protect us. Faith that keeps us safe is in the Father who loves us so much that He sent His Son as our redemption (John 3:16). Nothing else matters if Jesus is not our perfect redeemer as He claimed to be. If we want to be confident in hope that doesn’t disappoint and in faith that shields us, we must examine ourselves and make sure our trust remains in Christ alone (2 Corinthians 13:5; 2 Peter 1:10).