1 Unless the LORD builds the house,
those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchman stays awake in vain.
2 It is in vain that you rise up early
and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
for he gives to his beloved sleep.
3 Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth.
5 Blessed is the man
who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
(Translated version, original article written in Chinese by Pastor Mickey Hsiao)
[Theme] Unless the Lord…
This song of ascents from Solomon is a short psalm that many people are familiar with. It reminds us that everything – from building a house, guarding a city, to going about our daily lives – must all be performed under the sovereignty of God. God provides us with all we need and protects all we have received. Yes! We must humbly admit that all we have comes from the grace of God. If we rely only on our own labor – toiling from morning to night without God’s assistance – all that we gain would only be in vain, in vain, in vain.
In the middle of the song, the phrase “his beloved” is used. Solomon had a nickname “Jedidiah” that was given to him by the prophet Nathan (2 Sam. 12:24-25), which means “Beloved of the Lord.” The verse, “for he gives to his beloved sleep” has been translated by some to, “For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep.” What an imagery of being blessed through the knowledge of grace!
This psalm further reminds us that children are also gifts from God. Those that ascend great heights to meet with God still must not forget about their family. This is especially true of our children, because they are all special blessings and gifts from God.
Wise and God-fearing parents understand that they must raise and discipline their children according to God’s will – so that their children may become the next generation of godly people, boldly speaking up for what they believe and becoming powerful witnesses for God!
Both you and I are beloved by God. He has already cleansed us with the blood of Jesus and will take care of us in life. We should put forth our whole heart and strength into becoming a person that obeys God’s word and pleases God.
Come before God today and think about all that we have. Sincerely thank God for providing us with a peaceful dwelling and a family to share our lives with, because these are all gifts from God. Without God’s provision and protection, it all just becomes vanity.
Psalm 127:1 Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.