There is uncertainty regarding the author, time, or circumstances of these Psalms, but it is apparent Psalms 120-134 work together, and are called the “Songs of Degrees,” and sometimes “Songs of Ascension.”
Verses 1-2 show the security of saints;
Verse 3 shows the limit of wickedness;
Verses 4-5 show the distinction between the two.
Verses 1-2: (Verse 1) To “trust in the LORD” is to “lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5), nor on “men” nor on “princes” (Psalm 118:8-9), but to leave God in charge. “In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah: ‘We have a strong city; God will appoint salvation for walls and bulwarks. Open the gates, That the righteous nation which keeps the truth may enter in. You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You. Trust in the LORD forever, For in YAH, the LORD, is everlasting strength’” (Isaiah 26:1-4). Until God changed from the Law of Moses, “the LORD of hosts will reign On Mount Zion and in Jerusalem (Jeremiah 23:24). After the change to the Law of Christ, “you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem” (Hebrews 12:22). (Verse 2) So, as the mountains of Jerusalem give protection, “so the LORD surrounds His people.” “From this time forth and forever” applies even today because God’s vigilance is upon the “heavenly Jerusalem” His church (2 Corinthians 1:1; 6:16).
Verse 3: “The scepter” (rod signifying rule, dominance) of “wickedness” would not be allowed to “rest” on the land of the “righteous” to avoid their being beaten down to submission of evil. “He who sows iniquity will reap sorrow, And the rod of his anger will fail” (Proverbs 22:8). Jerusalem’s destruction in 70 A.D., Jesus prophesied, “then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be. And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:21-22). God knows when and how to stop sinners.
Verses 4-5: (Verse 4) The LORD knows whom to reward, those who are “good” and “upright in their hearts.” Jesus said, “No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments” (Matthew 19:17). He had been asked, “what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?” (Matthew 19:16. To Jesus, keeping the commandments of God is the “good thing” that makes one good enough to have eternal life. (Verse 5) The “wicked” are those who “turn aside to their crooked ways,” that is, do not obey God’s “strait” and “narrow” way (Matthew 7:13-14). “Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: ‘The Lord knows those who are His,’ and, ‘Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity’” (2 Timothy 2:19). Since God will help the good, and limit and “lead away” the wicked, good judgment would be to walk on God’s side.
All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted