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Pslam 127

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Introduction

Pslam 127 Psalm 127 is a very interesting Psalm with a message that is extremely apt considering the events of our current day. There is a general consensus that the overall purpose of Psalm 127 is to illustrate the complete futility of relying solely on our human efforts to accomplish anything meaningful and enduring. Whether we are building a skyscraper or a building a family, if God is not the foundation of those efforts, we will fail. Anyone who watched the World Trade Center crumble into an ashen heap within mere hours can surely appreciate the wisdom of this Wisdom Psalm. Still, the interpretation of the Psalm is not without controversy. One of the biggest points of contention goes to the overall structure of Psalm 127. While most commentators agree that Psalm 127 is intended to advocate the wisdom of making God the focus of everyday life, some questions arise as to whether the five verses of the Psalm were originally written as one piece. As noted by Allen, "The unity of the psalm is by no means assured. A sizeable number of scholars have regarded it as an amalgamation of two separate, unrelated sayings." According to the more extreme proponents of this view, verses 1 and 2 are completely unrelated in subject matter to verses 3 to 5 which celebrate God's blessing on a family through the gift of children. For instance, Weiser suggests that "[t]he psalm clearly falls into two parts which are quite unrelated as far as subject-matter is concerned. Verses 1 and 2 emphatically point out the significance of divine providence in human life; vv. ...read more.

Middle

5a, asre... ser aspato" as a further indication that the Psalm was written as one literary piece. Allen observes further parallel features, more precisely, "the repetition in v1 corresponds to in vv 3-4, while the divine name... occurs twice in v 1 and once in v3. Also, 'thus' appears in vv 2 , 4 and the (doubled) negative of v 2 is inclusively repeated in the last line of the second strophe, in v 5." "There is also evidence of a chiastic relationship between the strophes. Both vv 2b and 3 feature divine gifts; in v 2a 'the bread of labor (thus)' is paralleled in '(thus) the sons of youth' in v 4b; and 'fortunate' in 5a corresponds to 'in vain' in v 2a." "At its core lies the twin evidence of divine blessing, 'the bread of labor' and 'the sons of youth.' Before and after are placed amplifying statements, negative in the first case and positive in the second." All in all, considering the Psalm from either a thematic and literary point of view, there does not seem to be any profound reason to assume that the psalm was not originally written as one unit. As Miller observes, unless there are compelling reasons for the dissociation of verses 1-2 and 3-5, they should be seen and interpreted as a unity. In addition to questions as to the whether the Psalm was written as one piece, there are also some questions as to its authorship. Beside the general fact that Solomon could and did write many songs such as the one found in Psalm 127, there are several internal evidences that suggest Solomon as this Psalm's author. ...read more.

Conclusion

Just look around you and you can not help but see people rushing here and there, working long hours, ignoring their families, just to "succeed." But are they happy? No. And, are we safe? After the "9-11" tragedy, there are few of us that do not realize that despite all our Country's efforts, we are constantly vulnerable to attack. Psalm 127 gives comfort by telling us that we do not need to worry about any of these things. We are not capable of accomplishing anything or of protecting ourselves on our own, but we can rest or "sleep" knowing that God can handle it all. The scholarly questions as to whether verse 1 of Psalm 127 relates to building the temple, building your average home, or building your family is interesting but the answer does not really impact the message. Solomon, with all his wisdom and money, could not succeed in building the temple. It seems that the message here is universal-it applies to everyone, rich or poor-weak or strong. It also applies not only to the futility of building physical things like houses and temples, but equally to the futility of building families and relationships apart from God. Although there is dissension on the question of whether verses 3 to 5 were originally combined with verses 1 and 2; it seems that they fit in perfectly. Verses 1 and 2 caution one how to live to receive blessings and verses 3 to 5 paint a beautiful picture of the blessings one will receive if they heed God's advice. This message also foretells the message in the New Testament of Christ as Savior. God can and will save us, but it is not of our own accord, not of our works, but only through God's great gift and blessing. ...read more.

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