Psalm 127: Living by Faith

(5 verses, :35 to read)

LISTEN | READ

What I am about to READ

  • This psalm teaches us what it means to live our daily lives by faith.

MARK

  • Without the LORD all we do is in vain (1-2)
  • The LORD blesses us with children (3-5)

LEARN

  • Verses 1-2 – Solomon here wishes to sanction work, but to reject worry and covetousness. – Man must work, but that work is in vain if it stands alone and thinks it can sustain itself. Work cannot do this; God must do it. Therefore work in such manner that your labor is not in vain. Your labor is in vain when you worry, and rely on your own efforts to sustain yourself. It behooves you to labor, but your sustenance and the maintenance of your household belong to God alone. (Luther)
  • Luther goes so far to say that we should even work as if it all depended on us – as if there were no God! That is we are to work hard and not use the LORD as an excuse for laziness, but in all that we are given to do we work as if it depended on us, and then we entrust all of our efforts into the LORD’s hands knowing that He is the one who blesses and provides all things.
  • So in all of our vocations we are to work hard (as if it all depended on us), but not arrogantly think that it is our efforts that bring about any of the blessings – those only come because of God’s goodness and mercy!
  • That’s why on verse 2 Luther says, This whole verse [Ps. 127:2] is directed against arrogance and anxiety, as if he were to say: It is futile for you to rise up early and go to bed late, and think that the more you labor the more you will have. For that is something that the blessing of God has to accomplish. And even if you do succeed in acquiring more than others who are not so concerned about getting things and keeping them, still your earnings will not go as far as those of the carefree, but will slip through your fingers and disappear, as Psalm 37[:16] says, “It is better for the righteous to have a little than to have the great riches of the wicked.” And Solomon says in the Proverbs, “Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a fatted ox and hatred with it” [Prov. 15:17].
  • This allows the Christian to live a calm and peaceful life in joy – not anxious about the results of today’s work or what will happen tomorrow.
  • Verse 3 – Even children are not the result of our efforts, but a gracious gift from God. God is the author and giver of life.  He is the one who gives them as an inheritance and a reward.  Children, like all the other blessings discussed in this psalm are a pure gift from God.
  • Verses 4-5 – The great blessing of children is expanded upon. We are to happily receive however many or few children that the LORD chooses to bless us with – trusting that He knows what is best.

MEDITATE

  • This psalm beautifully sets forth what it looks like to live by faith.  We go about our daily vocations entrusting all we do into the hands of our loving Father, knowing that He is the one that provides for all our needs of body and soul.  This includes all that happens in our families.  This does not give us an excuse to be slothful, but rather gives us hope in the midst of hard work.  We leave it all in His hands knowing that He is good and gracious towards His children.

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/dailybiblemeditation/

-Pastor Andrew Packer

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