“Those who trust in the Lord are as Mount Zion, which cannot be moved but abides forever (Psalm 125:1).”
Mountain peaks are never crowded. That’s probably true because genuine trust is a rare commodity, and in alpine climbing you are putting your life in the hands of your partner, some rope, and a few metal spikes to secure against certain death.
I’ve been reading about the fabled Eiger in the Swiss Alps (13,015 feet) and the first attempts to climb its deadly North Face in the 1930’s. In doing so, I learned a new word (always splendid fun for a writer)…belay.
The Deadly North Face of the Eiger
I’ve heard “belay” before, as in nautical terms when a superior officer countermands an order with, “Belay that order, Ensign!” But “belay” in mountain climbing jargon means that someone is providing support to a climber who is trying to move up the mountain. They are an anchor-of-safety in case the other climber falls, a life-saving stopgap measure (they are tied to each other’s waist).
It’s interesting that the Psalmist listed Mount Zion as a simile for trusting in the Lord. Mount Zion is the biblical mountain where Abraham sacrificed his son Isaac, and the spot that David purchased to build Jerusalem. In the Bible, it is equated with complete and absolutely guaranteed unshakable trust. Jerusalem has been conquered and destroyed many times, but Mount Zion abides forever. I have stood in the tunnels under Jerusalem on the very bedrock of Mount Zion and touched the bus-sized foundation stones that the famous Wailing Wall rests upon above. It will never fall.
The bedrock of Mount Zion (under the Wall)
The Bible, however, says that we have already fallen, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).” Spiritually, our rope has snapped and we are plunging to our death, “…you were dead in your trespasses and sin(Ephesians 2:1).” But if we trust in Him, we are as secure as Mount Zion. If you’re not sure that your trust is a genuine, eternal, and saving Mount Zion faith, then consider the Jesus Nut.
The Jesus Nut
The “Jesus Nut” was a giant stainless-steel nut that attached the main rotor blades to the body on the first helicopter. According to the 1939 inventor, Igor Sikorsky, if that nut failed then “the next person you see will be Jesus.” But it is also known in climbing circles as a crucial extra piece of gear above the belay anchor that will save both climbers in case the lead climber falls.
Frankly, you’d be nuts not to have a Jesus Nut on your rope because biblically speaking you’ve already fallen and without Jesus as your belay, you will perish. As Paul said in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Your sin is as fatal as a frayed rope on the icy Eiger.
Let Him be your belay while you climb up. If you’re at the end of your rope, call out to Him today and He will stop your fall, as it says in 2 Corinthians 6:2, “‘AT THE ACCEPTABLE TIME I LISTENED TO YOU, AND ON THE DAY OF SALVATION I HELPED YOU.’ Behold, now is ‘THE ACCEPTABLE TIME,’ behold, now is ‘THE DAY OF SALVATION.’”
The Rock is Jesus
If you want to see what the Eiger was like in 1936 to the first pioneers, watch this amazing film:
Or read the book it’s based on: