Psalm 119 is not the only long Psalm. Psalm 78 might be the next longest. But for good reason…
We will not hide them from their children,
but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord,
and his might, and the wonders he has done. (v 4)
So often we keep what God is doing tucked away in our hearts. After all, religion is deeply personal, right? It can divide, and like politics, it’s not polite conversation, at lease my mother taught me. Although now talking about politics has certainly become in vogue no matter what it’s division. So why not our faith?
Especially to our children, and our children’s children. Why should we?
So that they should set their hope in God. (v7)
Otherwise, what are they going to hope in? Science? Social change? Political parties? Money? Pleasure?
When you are as old as many of us, we know those don’t satisfy. One scientist contradicts the other or new discoveries are made that fit into a “theory” that then become scientific truth. And who created creation, what scientist’s believe in? Scientists create systems that assume there is no god, setting themselves as gods.
Social change? Political parties? We may defund the police, but we still need systems of justice. A new power system always erupts. Money? Pleasure? Living for one’s self? Is that really satisfying?
David recounts the history of Israel to the children, just as we recount our personal histories to our children. It’s the grace of God, nothing else, that I am still alive. It’s the grace of God we have any money as people have graciously supported our ministry. It’s the grace of God that we are still married after 50 years!
I love David not only tells the good parts, but the bad parts so
…that they should not be like their fathers,
a stubborn and rebellious generation,
a generation whose heart was not steadfast,
whose spirit was not faithful to God.
Have you told your kids, your grandkids, about your sin, your failure, your rebellion? We tend to whitewash the past, lest someone think negatively about us, lose respect. But we know it. And how can our kids know the depth of God’s forgiveness unless they hear about the depth of our sin?
The rest of the chapter recounts the ups and downs of the Israelites. I’m sure our grands could not sit that long, but we can give them bits and pieces. To me it is summed up in verse 22…
Because they did not believe in God and did not trust his saving power.
Two things are essential: believe in God, trust his saving power.
When we do, life works. When we don’t, it may work for a while, but eventually it implodes.
Let’s tell that to our children…
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