Psalm 120 -134 collectively make up the fifteen songs of ascent that were written by three of the most well-known, God-fearing kings of Israel: Hezekiah, David, and Solomon. Many scholars believe that in ancient times these fifteen Psalms were sung by pilgrims making their way to the Holy Land to celebrate the high holy days. Some believe that the Levitical priests sang these Psalms as the pilgrims ascended the steps of the temple.
Whatever the historical significance may be, these fifteen Psalms set the example for how to enter into the presence of God. Through the meditation on these chapters, we as Believers can avoid dangerous traps of the enemy—choosing to press past the dangers on our journey in order that we might step into the presence of the Most High God.
If you are struggling, take some time out to step away from the situation and step into His presence. Choose to be a part of God’s solution, rather than fuel the fires that surround you.
Plea for Relief from Bitter Foes—
Psalm 120: A Song of Ascents
“In my distress I cried to the Lord,
And He heard me.
“Deliver my soul, O Lord, from lying lips
And from a deceitful tongue.
“What shall be given to you,
Or what shall be done to you,
You false tongue?
“Sharp arrows of the warrior,
With coals of the broom tree!
“Woe is me, that I dwell in Meshech,
That I dwell among the tents of Kedar!
“My soul has dwelt too long
With one who hates peace.
“I am for peace;
But when I speak, they are for war.”
God the Help of Those Who Seek Him—
Psalm 121: A Song of Ascents
“I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
“My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
“He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
“Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.
“The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
“The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.
“The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
“The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.”
The Joy of Going to the House of the Lord—
Psalm 122: A Song of Ascents of David
“I was glad when they said to me,
‘Let us go into the house of the Lord.’
“Our feet have been standing
Within your gates, O Jerusalem!
“Jerusalem is built
As a city that is compact together,
“Where the tribes go up,
The tribes of the Lord,
To the Testimony of Israel,
To give thanks to the name of the Lord.
“For thrones are set there for judgment,
The thrones of the house of David.
“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
‘May they prosper who love you.
“’Peace be within your walls,
Prosperity within your palaces.’
“For the sake of my brethren and companions,
I will now say, ‘Peace be within you.’
“Because of the house of the Lord our God
I will seek your good.”
Prayer for Relief from Contempt—
Psalm 123: A Song of Ascents
“Unto You I lift up my eyes,
O You who dwell in the heavens.
“Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters,
As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
So our eyes look to the Lord our God,
Until He has mercy on us.
“Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us!
For we are exceedingly filled with contempt.
“Our soul is exceedingly filled
With the scorn of those who are at ease,
With the contempt of the proud.”
The Lord the Defense of His People—
Psalm 124: A Song of Ascents of David
“‘If it had not been the Lord who was on our side,’
Let Israel now say—
“‘If it had not been the Lord who was on our side,
When men rose up against us,
“‘Then they would have swallowed us alive,
When their wrath was kindled against us;
“‘Then the waters would have overwhelmed us,
The stream would have gone over our soul;
“‘Then the swollen waters
Would have gone over our soul.’
“Blessed be the Lord,
Who has not given us as prey to their teeth.
“Our soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowlers;
The snare is broken, and we have escaped.
“Our help is in the name of the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.”
The Lord the Strength of His People—
Psalm 125: A Song of Ascents
“Those who trust in the Lord
Are like Mount Zion,
Which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
“As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
So the Lord surrounds His people
From this time forth and forever.
“For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
On the land allotted to the righteous,
Lest the righteous reach out their hands to iniquity.
“Do good, O Lord, to those who are good,
And to those who are upright in their hearts.
“As for such as turn aside to their crooked ways,
The Lord shall lead them away
With the workers of iniquity.
Peace be upon Israel!”
A Joyful Return to Zion—
Psalm 126: A Song of Ascents
“When the Lord brought back the captivity of Zion,
We were like those who dream.
“Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
And our tongue with singing.
Then they said among the nations,
‘The Lord has done great things for them.’
“The Lord has done great things for us,
And we are glad.
“Bring back our captivity, O Lord,
As the streams in the South.
“Those who sow in tears
Shall reap in joy.
“He who continually goes forth weeping,
Bearing seed for sowing,
Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing,
Bringing his sheaves with him.”
Laboring and Prospering with the Lord—
Psalm 127: A Song of Ascents. Of Solomon
“Unless the Lord builds the house,
They labor in vain who build it;
Unless the Lord guards the city,
The watchman stays awake in vain.
“It is vain for you to rise up early,
To sit up late,
To eat the bread of sorrows;
For so He gives His beloved sleep.
“Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
“Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one’s youth.
“Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed,
But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.”
Blessings of Those Who Fear the Lord—
Psalm 128: A Song of Ascents
“Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
Who walks in His ways.
“When you eat the labor of your hands,
You shall be happy, and it shall be well with you.
“Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
In the very heart of your house,
Your children like olive plants
All around your table.
“Behold, thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the Lord.
“The Lord bless you out of Zion,
And may you see the good of Jerusalem
All the days of your life.
“Yes, may you see your children’s children.
Peace be upon Israel!”
Song of Victory over Zion’s Enemies—
Psalm 129: Song of Ascents
“‘Many a time they have afflicted me from my youth,
Let Israel now say—
“‘Many a time they have afflicted me from my youth;
Yet they have not prevailed against me.
“‘The plowers plowed on my back;
They made their furrows long.’
“The Lord is righteous;
He has cut in pieces the cords of the wicked.
“Let all those who hate Zion
Be put to shame and turned back.
“Let them be as the grass on the housetops,
Which withers before it grows up,
“With which the reaper does not fill his hand,
Nor he who binds sheaves, his arms.
“Neither let those who pass by them say,
‘The blessing of the Lord be upon you;
We bless you in the name of the Lord!”
Waiting for the Redemption of the Lord—
Psalm 130: A Song of Ascents
“Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord;
“Lord, hear my voice!
Let Your ears be attentive
To the voice of my supplications.
“If You, Lord, should mark iniquities,
O Lord, who could stand?
“But there is forgiveness with You,
That You may be feared.
“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
And in His word I do hope.
“My soul waits for the Lord
More than those who watch for the morning—
Yes, more than those who watch for the morning.
“O Israel, hope in the Lord;
For with the Lord there is mercy,
And with Him is abundant redemption.
“And He shall redeem Israel
From all his iniquities.”
Simple Trust in the Lord—
Psalm 131: A Song of Ascents of David
“Lord, my heart is not haughty,
Nor my eyes lofty.
Neither do I concern myself with great matters,
Nor with things too profound for me.
“Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul,
Like a weaned child with his mother;
Like a weaned child is my soul within me.
“O Israel, hope in the Lord
From this time forth and forever.”
The Eternal Dwelling of God in Zion—
Psalm 132: A Song of Ascents
“Lord, remember David
And all his afflictions;
“How he swore to the Lord,
And vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob:
“‘Surely I will not go into the chamber of my house,
Or go up to the comfort of my bed;
“‘I will not give sleep to my eyes
Or slumber to my eyelids,
“‘Until I find a place for the Lord,
A dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob.’
“Behold, we heard of it in Ephrathah;
We found it in the fields of the woods.
“Let us go into His tabernacle;
Let us worship at His footstool.
“Arise, O Lord, to Your resting place,
You and the ark of Your strength.
“Let Your priests be clothed with righteousness,
And let Your saints shout for joy.
“For Your servant David’s sake,
Do not turn away the face of Your Anointed.
“The Lord has sworn in truth to David;
He will not turn from it:
‘I will set upon your throne the fruit of your body.
“‘If your sons will keep My covenant
And My testimony which I shall teach them,
Their sons also shall sit upon your throne forevermore.’
“For the Lord has chosen Zion;
He has desired it for His dwelling place:
“‘This is My resting place forever;
Here I will dwell, for I have desired it.
“‘I will abundantly bless her provision;
I will satisfy her poor with bread.
“‘I will also clothe her priests with salvation,
And her saints shall shout aloud for joy.
“‘There I will make the horn of David grow;
I will prepare a lamp for My Anointed.
“‘His enemies I will clothe with shame,
But upon Himself His crown shall flourish.’”
Blessed Unity of the People of God—
Psalm 133: A Song of Ascents. Of David
“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!
“It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments.
“It is like the dew of Hermon,
Descending upon the mountains of Zion;
For there the Lord commanded the blessing—
Praising the Lord in His House at Night—
Psalm 134: A Song of Ascents
“Behold, bless the Lord,
All you servants of the Lord,
Who by night stand in the house of the Lord!
“Lift up your hands in the sanctuary,
And bless the Lord.
“The Lord who made heaven and earth
Bless you from Zion!”
We pray that as you have taken the time out to seek the Lord, you encounter His love and light. We decree, “Let there be light!” in all the areas where before there was darkness, and we say, “May His perfect love cast out all fear that may have been trying to take us captive.” The Lord is faithful. He is trustworthy, and He is with each one of us. Hallelujah! He is worthy of all praise!