A song of ascents are the words that begin the fifteen Psalms found in chapters 120-134.
Psalm 121 is one of the fifteen that opens with “A song of ascents,” but is unique among them. This Psalm conveys a cry out to the Lord for help and is traditionally said in a time of crisis.
It illustrates a pure and steadfast faith in the Creator of the universe. It shows how God is worthy of our absolute trust as He is constantly watching over His people Israel. His presence and protection are everlasting and unwavering. Just as the sun rises and sets, God never slumbers nor sleeps when protecting His people.
These words have been put to many different melodies by a multitude of singers.
One of the most beautiful was done by a well-known Israeli musician, Mosh Ben Ari. It is certainly my favorite.
He began playing music at the age of 16 when he was exposed to and fell in love with traditional Jewish and ethnic music. He set out to pursue his passion by learning different kinds of music from around the world.
He is one of the founders of and a former singer in the Israeli music ensemble Sheva. Later on, he became famous throughout Israel for his unique and ethnic style.
“I lift my eyes up to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord watches over you—
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.