Passing on the Message of Peace – Week of July 26, 2021
My people, hear my teaching;
listen to the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth with a parable;
I will utter hidden things, things from of old—
things we have heard and known,
things our ancestors have told us.
We will not hide them from their descendants;
we will tell the next generation
the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord,
his power, and the wonders he has done.
Do you remember the “telephone game”? In this game, often played at teen events and slumber parties, one person whispers a phrase or sentence in an ear and then it gets passed down and passed down through whispers and giggles. And in the end the last person shouts out a sentence that almost always had NOTHING to do with the original!
Well, in the early times of the Bible, generations relied on storytelling, a “telephone game” of sorts, to preserve their history, traditions, and faith. There were no GoogleDocs and there was no recording of Zoom meetings. Before the Bible was written by men through God, everything that God wanted us to know was passed down from generation to generation with conversation. How thankful we are that God’s Word is well-preserved. God’s Word is eternal, even during the times that we didn’t have paper and Smartphones!
The words “parable” and “hidden” in the Psalm might be confusing because these words might give the impression that the truth of God’s Word is something unattainable. But here the word “parable” means that teachings of the Bible need to be carefully and frequently studied in order to apply them to our lives. And the word “hidden” is used not because we cannot access God’s Word, but because we need to have God the Holy Spirit give us the faith to understand what we are learning.
Are you able to listen carefully when you have opportunities to hear and read God’s Word? Or are you easily distracted—by your “to-do” list, housework, financial concerns, or family issues? Do you take the time to really study and learn what God wants us to know, or do you rush through your devotional time just to check it off your list? I have good news—it’s never too late to refresh and restart devoting your time to read the Bible! God knows our sins; he knows that we are easily distracted and sometimes unfaithful. But God is always faithful, always forgiving, and he wants us to come back to him and his Word.
Let us listen carefully to the teachings of the Bible, passed down to us for generations and written down for us through the power of the Holy Spirit. After careful and frequent study of the stories in the Bible, we are more ready to pass on these truths to the children and families that we serve.
What a blessing that we work in a Christian early childhood program! Christian education first begins with adults studying the Bible. The more we grow in the Word, the more ready we are to “tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord.”
For Christian homes, O Lord, we pray, that you might dwell with us each day.
Make ours a place where you are Lord, where all is governed by your Word.
And when you call us all to rest, then will we have a home more blest,
See all our care and sorrow cease, and find with Christ eternal peace. Amen.
Christian Worship 500:1, 5