A Meditation on Psalm 46


by CVC Founding Pastor, Rick Duncan

Fear not… though the mountains be moved

One of the most familiar passages in all of Scripture about overcoming our fear in life is found in Psalm 46.

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present[b] help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah” (Psalm 46:1-3).

Even though we will find ourselves in situations where the earth is quaking beneath us and we are about to drown in a flood of troubles, we need not fear.

Why can we live free from fear? It’s because, as Pastor Josh Stone said recently, “We are needy, but He is mighty!” It’s not about our ability and activity. It’s about God and His supremacy and sufficiency.

We need not fear because of the rest of what this Psalm says. Notice…

  1. The Promise of God. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns” (Psalm 46:4-5). We can endure the earthquakes and floods because the new heaven and the new earth are coming. We will be safe, secure, and glad in the city of God one day forever and ever. (Read Revelation 22:1-5 about the river in God’s eternal city.)
  2. The Power of God. The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; He utters His voice, the earth melts” (Psalm 46:6). Wherever darkness rules internationally and whenever kingdoms fail and fall in this world, it is God who is in charge. He is sovereign over all. He’s never wringing His hands wondering what He’s going to do. Nothing surprises Him.
  3. The Presence of God. “The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah” (Psalm 46:7). We are never alone. He will be with us even to the end of the age.
  4. The Performance of God. Come, behold the works of the Lord, how He has brought desolations on the earth” (Psalm 46:8). We can read the scriptures about the works of the Lord. We can remind ourselves of what God has done in the past to rescue His people. Many times, the scriptures remind us of the Exodus experience when God brought His people out of slavery. And we can remember all the things that He has done for us in the past.
  5. The Peace of God. “He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; He burns the chariots with fire” (Psalm 46:9). For His sovereign purposes, God sometimes uses wars and hardships to discipline His people. But history is moving toward that day when His peace will prevail. Forever. Count on it!

So, for all these reasons, we can remember that it’s not our activity and ability that make the difference. It’s the Lord’s supremacy and sufficiency. We can cease striving. We can be still. The Lord Himself says to our anxious hearts, “’Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!’ The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah” (Psalm 46:10-11).


Which aspect of the character of God – His promise, power, presence, performance, of peace – do you need to claim most for your life today? How will you access His ability in the midst of your need? Who can help you with that? When will you start?