Monday, October 24, 2011

Psalm 127

A song of ascents. Of Solomon.

1 Unless the LORD builds the house,
the builders labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the guards stand watch in vain.
2 In vain you rise early
and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat—
for he grants sleep to[a] those he loves.
3 Children are a heritage from the LORD,
offspring a reward from him.
4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
are children born in one’s youth.
5 Blessed is the man
whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their opponents in court.

Key Verse:
1 Unless the LORD builds the house,
the builders labor in vain.

Key Observation:
McGee: “This psalm has been used on several important occasions. It was used at the inauguration of President Eisenhower. Two Bibles were used. One of them was George Washington’s Bible, and it was opened at Psalm 127.”

McGee, J. Vernon (1990-01-30). Thru the Bible 1-5 (5 Volume Set) (Kindle Locations 51271-51272). Grupo Nelson. Kindle Edition.

Memory Verse:
4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
are children born in one’s youth.


How we Christians strive to see the Lord in everything we want to build; how utterly we fail, sometimes when we least expect to. My church is looking to purchase an expensive building—one that might challenge our resources to the limit. The whole purpose of our prayer and looking to God is to find out whether He is blessing the endeavor or not. We want to reach for more—but the challenge is to stay centered in the will of God as we do so. Here the promise, quite applicable to we Christians today, is that unless the Lord builds the house, we will labor in vain.

Lift up your eyes upon the fields for they are white already to harvest. So says the Lord to his disciples. We need to pray Elisha’s prayer,(2 Kings 6, "And Elisha prayed, "Oh Lord, open his eyes that he may see.") that the Lord might let us view the scene as He views it—not as we would have it—but as He wants us to see it. That takes vision from the Lord, and not our vision of what could be. It is not an easy task to find the will of God, and yet it is the easiest thing in the world. I believe that this saying is true, as contradictory as it might seem.

I think the quandary comes when we come to God with our expectations. Sometimes I have labored long in prayer, articulating my vision in detail to God, only to find disappointment as my vision does not come to fruition. Sometimes, as I have watched and prayed, it becomes evident to me that God had a better plan than I ever envisioned, and that, indeed, I should have trusted and waited more upon Him. That is the hard part, telling whether the vision is of God, or merely an expression of my plan for what God should do—a dangerous place to find myself in.

But the easy part, that this is the easiest thing in the world, lies in the third person of the Trinity. Christ tells us of the job of the Holy Spirit: “He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.” Paul tells us further, “But we have the mind of Christ.” It is merely our duty to submit to the Spirit and He will give us the very mind of Christ. There is an old adage (old even to me, and that is old indeed) that says: May I be willing to be made willing to do whatever is your will O God. Our will, I think, is hard for us to subdue. Do we not spend all of our lives trying to beat it back? But the submission to the will of God is everything, for in the instant that I do that, I find peace flooding my soul, and a patience to give God the glory for whatever He should work out.

The field is white already to harvest, and my prayer is that we should reap bountifully of the harvest. I need to submit to God, and let Him work out the means—perhaps a hot revival will fall upon us from a source yet unseen. Perhaps it will come from acquiring the very building that we are praying for. But the prayer, that God should send us revival, to reap a harvest, is the prayer I should stay centered in. Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee.

Peace, Perfect Peace

1. Peace, perfect peace, in this dark world of sin?
The blood of Jesus whispers peace within.

2. Peace, perfect peace, by thronging duties pressed?
To do the will of Jesus, this is rest.

3. Peace, perfect peace, with sorrows surging round?
On Jesus' bosom naught but calm is found.

4. Peace, perfect peace, with loved ones far away?
In Jesus' keeping we are safe, and they.

5. Peace, perfect peace, our future all unknown?
Jesus we know, and He is on the throne.

6. Peace, perfect peace, death shadowing us and ours?
Jesus has vanquished death and all its powers.

7. It is enough: earth's struggles soon shall cease,
And Jesus, call us to heav'n's perfect peace.

Lyrics: Edward Henry Bickersteth

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