Summary: Wedding Service Message: Psalm 127 (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
• A man went to a psychiatrist with a worry problem.
• “Every time I get into bed,” he said, “I’m convinced there is somebody under it”.
• “I can help”, said the psychiatrist,
• “But it will mean a session a week for a year, costing £30 per visit”.
• The man never returned,
• So when the psychiatrist met him in the street he asked why he hadn’t come back.
• “Oh, a friend cured me for nothing,” he explained.
• “How did he do that?” asked the psychiatrist.
• “He simply told me to cut the legs off the bed!”
• Replied the man.
• Psalm 127;
• Also gives simple practical advice for some key areas of our lives.
• Is an ancient song with a modern message;
• It deals with the practical themes of:
• Home-making (verse 1).
• Security (verse 1).
• Work (verse 2).
• Having a family (verse 3-5).
• If you are Scottish, you might recognise the words from verse 1,
• It is the motto of the city of Edinburgh, Scotland,
• It appears on the crest,
• And is affixed to the city’s official documents.
• In Latin it says; ‘Nisi Dominus frustra’,
• Which means; “Without the Lord it is in vain”.
That motto or that expression is the main point of this Psalm.
• The Psalm divides up into three parts;
• Three activities are mentioned; building, protection, and raising a family.
And this Psalm clearly teaches that:
• Unless God blesses these activities with his presence and help,
• Then no matter how we view success and failure.
• The simple fact is this;
• According to Psalm 127 all our efforts will have been in vain.
(1). Building without the Lord (verses 1-2).
Unless the LORD builds the house,
its builders labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain.
2 In vain you rise early
and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat—
for he grants sleep to those he loves.
• To the people who first received this Psalm:
• The things mentioned carried immediate meaning.
• Building a house,
• Keeping watch over a city,
• Toiling for food.
• Were all essential tasks.
• The idea that these things could have been done in vain,
• Would have come as quite a shock to the readers of this psalm.
• So to its original readers Solomon’s words have a cutting edge:
• That would have arrested the attention of the reader.
• But Solomon’s words are not old hat, out of date,
• They still have important principles that apply to all our lives.
The first activity mentioned is:
(a). Constructing a house.
Building a house was a common activity:
• Which required a considerable effort &cost,
• So imagine investing time and energy only to find out that it was all is pointless.
• How depressing and disappointing to have invested time & money, to have done your best,
• Only to find out there was a much better way of doing it!
• It is visited each year by thousands of people,
• It is one of the great tourist attractions in the world,
• It stands 179 feet tall and is a work of beauty,
• The problem is the architect built it on 10 feet of foundations.
• The leaning tower of Pisa,
• Is externally impressive but was a disaster waiting to happen!
• And it has only survived to this day,
• Thanks to the knowledge and skill of many different experts.
Alistair & Rachel (and of course everyone else):
• This Psalm reminds us;
• That no matter how impressive your home may or may not look,
• In the end only one thing matters,
• How good are your foundations?
• Jesus himself taught us in the parable of the wise & foolish builders,
• Build your life, marriage, future by building on him!
• Otherwise all your efforts will be in vain!
(b).Guarding a city.
• In Old Testament times watchmen were stationed on city walls and hill tops,
• Their job was to be look outs and to warn the people of the enemies attack.
• They played a vital role in defending a city,
• Key people in protecting the people from danger.
• But there ability to defend a city was limited.
• Even if they played their part well, the city could still be conquered.
• The Great Wall of China is the only man made structure that can be seen on the moon,
• It is 3,460 kilometres long and was built over a period of 2,000 years.
• It was built so high that nobody could climb over it,