Psalm 125 is another of the psalms of Ascent, or ‘Songs of Degrees’ which were the pilgrims song book for their journey to Jerusalem. This psalm talks of the topography of Jerusalem which not only sits on a mountain but is also surrounded by them. I’ve been blessed to see this City of God first hand, and while they aren’t the Rockies or Himalayas in size or scope, they are some significant mountains in their own right. The Temple Mount is cut off from the rest of the city by deep ravines and sits high atop that mountain.
The writer calls on those images as he pens this psalm. It is almost as if the author is describing what he sees as he crests the hill and sees the city from afar. His attention is first drawn to the mountain where the temple sits, high and amidst the other mountains of the area. “Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever”. Mount Zion represents the stable, powerful and unmovable place of God. It never changes. It is the mountain surrounded by all the others. God never moves and is worthy of our praise.
He goes on to describe the rest of those mountains surrounding Zion, Mount Olivet and others, which wrap around and surround the Holy Mount. “As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore”. Symbolic of how God surrounds and protects His people, these mountains give us a view of the steadfast God and the protection he offers to those all around Him who trust in Him and keep their eyes focused on Him. He gives us stability and defense. He is our rock and protection.
The psalmist calls on God to bless His people. “Do good, O Lord, to those who are good, and to those who are upright in their hearts”! If we walk uprightly with God, He will do good for us. In order to be good we must have a good heart which comes from a deep and intimate relationship with God Himself. We have to walk in faith and learn God’s ways through His Word and hearing His voice. There is a price to pay for those who insist on living in their evil and crooked ways. How we live matters. God is alert and paying attention. We need to walk in obedience to Him!