In each of these three passages we find out about the awesome power of God, and how he uses His people to make himself known to others. In Exodus, God calls for his messenger, Moses, to give him words to share with the Israelites now that they have entered the wilderness. They are to remain faithful to God, and keep His covenants. And if they do this, God will make them His treasured people. God promises to make his presence known by coming in the form of a dense (and I assume thunderous) cloud. As I read this sentence, I think about how meek I am, as I have not ever been able to make my presence known in such an amazing way.
Then in Acts, we read about the Holy Spirit filling the people, causing them to speak in languages they had not previously been able to speak. I try to imagine what that might have been like to either experience that or witness it in person. Hanging out in Hoffman Hall between services, when all of a sudden, a violent wind blows in through the windows and doors, as tongues of fire appear above everyone’s head; and everyone starts speaking French, Spanish, German, Hebrew, Yiddish, Polish, etc.
Now going back to the Psalm, which I think ties all of this together. Those who have God in their lives, and who remain faithful to Him who wields all of the power mentioned in the previous paragraphs, will be saved from death. There are two sentences in there that I think are most important. 16 A king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. 20 Our soul waits for the Lord; he is our help and shield. We cannot do this life on our own.
We may get it stuck in our head that WE have to get things done a certain way. That it is OUR talent or skills that will bring us what we WANT/NEED. But in reality, that is foolish thinking. A king cannot be saved by his own accord or his army. We cannot be saved by our own accord or abilities. God is our help and shield. If we are to be the best we are meant to be, we have to do it in faith that God’s will will ultimately prevail. If we don’t find success at something, rather than getting down and frustrated, we need to search for the silver lining. What is it that God has in store for us? The God who made his presence known to the Israelites in the wilderness and the Holy Spirit who gave people the power to speak in tongues have a better plan that we have yet to understand. Trust in His plan.