Summary: At this present situation families are openly in trouble and others were broken. How can we solve this problem and make it a strong family? And how can we receive the blessing from God?
“Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.”
I) THE FAMILY SUCCESS WILL BE FOUND IN GOD (v.1a).
How to became successful in building family?
a. by seeking GOD’S direction
b. by depending upon GOD’S help
c. by giving GOD’S the
II) THE FAMILY SAFETY COMES FROM THE WATCHFUL EYES OF GOD (v.1b)
How can we receive divine security?
a. by owning our short sight
b. by trusting to HIS sight
House building and city guarding cannot be succeed apart from God’s help. The psalmist stresses that life should be lived in dependence on the Lord, here the emphasis is placed upon the futility of human effort without God’s help. Building a house and watching over the City cannot succeed if God is not included in man’s plan and effort. Even the diligent man who works from early morning until late evening cannot hope for success without God’s blessing and sanction.
I. Except the LORD build the house, they labor in vain that build it (Verse 1)
The word vain is the keynote here, and we hear it ring out clearly three times. Men desiring to build know that they must labor, and accordingly they put forth all their skill and strength; but let them remember that if Jehovah is not with them their designs will prove failures. So was it with the Babel builders; they said, "Go to, let us build us a city and a tower"; and the Lord returned their words into their own bosoms, saying, "Go to, let us go down and there confound their language." In vain they toiled, for the Lord’s face was against them.
When Solomon resolved to build a house for the Lord, matters were very different, for all things united under God to aid him in his great undertaking: even the heathen were at his beck and call that he might erect a temple for the Lord his God. In the same manner God blessed him in the erection of his own palace; for this verse evidently refers to all sorts of house building. Without God we are nothing. Great houses have been erected by ambitious men; but like the baseless fabric of a vision they have passed away, and scarce a stone remains to tell where once they stood.
The wealthy build their own such Palace, could he revisit the glimpses of the moon, would be perplexed to find a relic of his former pride: he labored in vain, for the place of his travail knows not a trace of his handiwork. The like may be said of the builders of castles and abbeys: when the mode of life indicated by these piles ceased to be endurable by the Lord, the massive walls of ancient architects crumbled into ruins, and their toil melted like the froth of vanity. Not only do we now spend our strength for nought without Jehovah, but all who have ever labored apart from him come under the same sentence. Trowel and hammer, saw and plane are instruments of vanity unless the Lord be the Master builder.
Whether it be understood literally of an artificial house, as Solomon’s own house; or the house of the Lord, or any other: let a man be ever so bent upon building one, or have ever so much skill in drawing the plan of it, or be ever so well provided to go through the expense of it, or have ever so many hands employed in it, yet, if the Lord does not give success, it will all be in vain; the building will fall down, or be consumed by fire before it is finished; or by one providence or another he will be obliged to desist from it.Leah and Rachel built up the house of Israel, Ruth 4:11; this depends upon the providence of God; for, as it is after said, "children are an heritage of the Lord," Psalm 127:3. Or whether it be understood, figuratively and mystically, of the church God, the house of the living God; the house of Christ, a spiritual one; a Gospel church, whose materials are lively stones, or true believers.
Now there are builders in this house, some indeed very bad ones; and it is no wonder that they labor in vain, who reject and lay aside the foundation and corner stone, Christ; who deny his deity, despise his righteousness; or mix grace and works, law and Gospel, together, and pluck down with one hand what they build with another: and though there are others that are good ones, and lay the foundation, Christ; and build on this foundation precious truths, comparable to gold, silver, and precious stones; minister the word, and administer the ordinances, truly and faithfully; and in all direct to Christ for grace, strength, peace, comfort, and eternal life; speak to edification, and are the means of reviving the graces of God’s people, and of establishing their souls; as well as of the conversion of sinners, whereby the house of God is built up; yet if the Lord does not prosper their work, all is in vain. For the principal builder is God, Father, Son, and Spirit; this is mostly applied to the second Person, the Word and Wisdom of God, Proverbs 9:1; but not to the exclusion of the Father, who has laid in Zion a foundation, a precious corner stone, and builds souls on it; nor of the Spirit, through whom saints are built up an habitation for God, Isaiah 28:16.