They Compassed Me About Like Bees 


(Psalm 118:12)

In this biblical passage, David talks about his enemies who are chasing him; they want to put an end to his life. They swarmed around me like bees, (GNB). They swarmed around him, like bees. The word “swarmed” has different meanings, such as grouped, hovered, circled, flown and risen.

Consider the Middle Eastern life style, the geography, the fields, the trees, the farmer’s life, and the countryside. Sometimes you will see a big tree where there are hundreds or even thousands of bees gathered. These bees go out from the tree to different fields and draw nectar from various flowers. Then they return to deposit the nectar which, over time, produces honey in a honeycomb. Honey is good for human health; it can keep a person vigorous and strong.  This is one positive aspect of bees—the medicinal role of honey.

In the scenario above, the honey bees are usually calm and quiet insects. On the other hand when they are disturbed by an intruder such as someone who wants to get the honey from their honeycomb, the bee colony can become very angry, aggressive and furious. Bees have a strong sting which can be very painful and sometimes the bee sting area becomes swollen.

David says, “My enemies hover over me like bees.”

Once a man tried to get honey from the honeycomb but he was attacked by the bee colony. He flew, they were so many bees that he ran and ran, but could not escape. As he ran he saw a water canal so he jumped into the canal, dived under the water, but the bees still hovered over him.

Some bees are poisonous, having a very venomous sting.

When I contemplate this thought today, I realize that everybody has “bees” swarming around his or her life. These bees can be seen as our foes, our hardships, our prolonged sicknesses, our broken relations. They can be family crises, or the deaths of our friends and loved one (spouse, son, daughter, or parent). These “bees” (circumstances, situations) group around us; they hover over us, they encircle us.

Now let us consider:

Bees produce honey and sweetness. They also produce crises, hardships, tragedies. God uses the “bees” to mold us, to shape us, to soften us and to sweeten us.

Honey gives strength. These crises produce strength for our inner being, for our body, mind, soul and spirit. This is the positive aspect of our tragedies.

The “bees” can also be poisonous and their sting very strong. Just as some tragedies can harm us if we are not careful.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  (Romans 8:28)

So God brings good to us from all situations, whether they are bad or good. Therefore, let us not worry when “the bees” hover over us. God can, and has the absolute power to, protect His people. He is all powerful, He is sovereign; glory to His great name!

Be blessed.

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