A few days ago, I was reading an older translation of the Finnish Bible and encountered something beautiful in the last verse of Psalm 5. It declares ‘You will cover them with grace like a shield’. My heart rejoiced to know that we are covered by the shield of grace. How wonderful is that? We are safe under the shield of grace! I was so thrilled about the shield of grace that I immediately wanted to share it with you.
As I was going through English translations I was disappointed not to find the word ‘shield of grace’ there. I wasn’t even able to find it in the new Finnish translation. Instead, they all talked about the shield of favor or blessing or love.
Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
you surround them with your favor as with a shield.
(Psalm 5:12, NIV)
For you bless the godly, OLord;
you surround them with your shield of love.
(Psalm 5:12, NLT)
Favor, blessing, and love are wonderful things, aren’t they? But as Christians we tend to think God’s ultimate favor to humankind is salvation through grace, salvation through Jesus’ sacrificial death. That’s why we gladly understand God’s favor as grace.
The Hebrew word tsinnah (צִנָּה) used here for the shield defines a large, long shield that protected the whole body. Hence, God’s shield of grace is able to fully protect his children against all kinds of dangers. How blessed we are to live under the shield of grace. We are God’s children and he takes care of us.
The verse declares – no matter what translation we use – that we are protected by God. He loves us so much that he surrounds us with his love and grace. We don’t deserve any favors from God yet he still pours out blessings upon blessings. We are saved by grace and we are also shielded by grace. Hallelujah!
How good you are to us.
You love us unconditionally
and show us your love
by saving us by grace
and shielding us by grace.
Enable us to trust you completely
and share your love and grace with others.
In Jesus’ precious name,
Q4U: How about you? Do you live under the shield of grace?
Be blessed my fellow pilgrim as you embrace God’s love and grace for you!