In my distress I cry to the Lord,
that he may answer me:
“Deliver me, O Lord,
from lying lips,
from a deceitful tongue.” (Psalm 120 v 1-2)
Psalm 120 is the first of the Song of Ascents, 15 Psalms that would have been sung by pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem to celebrate the feasts of Passover, Pentecost & Tabernacles. Jerusalem was the highest city in Palestine, so all who travelled there spent much of their time ascending. We know Jesus travelled with his family to Jerusalem for the feasts from an early age. The ascents for the pilgrim were not only literal but also a metaphor for life, life lived upward toward God—advancing from one level of maturity to another.
Psalm 120 begins with a pilgrim crying out to the Lord from his or her distress. The journey begins with a choice. Who will I listen to? Who will I follow? Just as these pilgrims did not make the journey to Jerusalem only once, we too must come back to these questions: Who will I listen to? Who will I follow? Who will I cry out to in my distress?
Lyn Hayes ALM