A Song of Ascents
1 Blessed is every one who fears the LORD,
who walks in his ways!
2 You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you.
3 Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots around your table.
4 Lo, thus shall the man be blessed who fears the LORD.
5 The LORD bless you from Zion!
May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life!
6 May you see your children’s children!
Peace be upon Israel!
This is a psalm of blessing, followed by a list of things that demonstrate that one is blessed.
The fear to the Lord brings a blessing. Not real popular in the post modern church, they are uncomfortable with a God that is to be feared. They want the friendly pal around kind of god. Your “best friend forever” god. One who will join in the fun, and never condemn. However in order to get this blessing one must walk in His ways.
If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. John 15:10
To “walk” in His ways is called halakha which means the “way we walk”. Throughout the Bible “walk” is used for how well one obeys.
And he blessed Joseph, and said, “The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, the God who has led me all my life long to this day, Gen. 48:15
Then the LORD said to Moses, “Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law or not. Ex. 16:4
One of the signs that a person is walking with the Lord, is that they are eating their own bread. They are not begging or living off the generosity of others. God doesn’t desire welfare queens. Sure in times of economic struggle everyone needs help, but we are not to make it a habit or a lifestyle.
For even when we were with you, we gave you this command: If any one will not work, let him not eat. 2Th. 3:10
Children are a blessing from God. However it is a blessing many decide to terminate. This rejection of God’s blessing shows that one does not fear God. To murder another human being just because God’s blessing is inconvenient is evil.
For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. Matt. 15:19
Such an act makes it plain to everyone that there is no fear of God in the souls of a man. This blessing in only for those that fear God. They tremble when they fail in His service, and beg for forgiveness at the slightest inner thought that is not captive.
We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle to the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, 2Cor. 10:5
Blessings come form Zion, for that is where the Lord chose to put His name.
Yet to his son I will give one tribe, that David my servant may always have a lamp before me in Jerusalem, the city where I have chosen to put my name. 1Kings 11:36
We now look to a spiritual Jerusalem and no longer to that physical city. For the Lord now dwells in our hearts, and we are the temple. His name is to be there on our foreheads just as His people are engraved on the palms of His hands.
. . . they shall see his face, and his name shall be on their foreheads. Rev. 22:4
Behold, I have graven you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me. Is. 49:16
This psalm ends with a hope that the reader will see the prosperity of Jerusalem. For we are the city and the bride. Even though in this life we may suffer but the time of triumph is coming, when our Lord shows us to the world, as His pure bride, wearing robes of shinning white.
And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband; Rev. 21:2
Let those who keep faith with God live to see their grand children. Not just those of the physical world, but also those that are our children by faith. Those that chose to attach themselves to the family of God because we were faithful in our service to our King.
Then the final line, may those that “struggle with God” (for that is what Israel means) have Shalom. That peace that passes all understanding.