“We will not hide them [teachings from the past] from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done. He decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.” (Psa. 78:4-7)
Psalm 78 is a maskil of Asaph. Maskiyl (Hebrew) means that it is a didactic psalm, meant for instruction or teaching. As you read through the rest of this Psalm, you’ll see the writer recounting the history of Israel from their time of slavery in Egypt up to the reign of King David.
Knowing that this psalm is specifically meant for instruction, we should pay special attention to the wisdom it provides.
There are a few practical lessons we can take from this passage:
1) We should be telling our children of the good things God has done in our lives (v4)
2) God commands us to instruct our children in the way of the Lord (v5, also see Prov. 22:6 and Eph. 6:4)
3) When we teach and establish a foundation of faith in our children, they in turn will do so with their children (v6)
4) Raising our children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord, will be a direct conduit to their trust and obedience in God (v7)
If you look around the world, it’s alarming to see what’s going on and the things our children will have to face as they grow older. Prophecy is being fulfilled as, more and more, good is called evil and evil is called good (Isa. 5:20).
If we’re worried about our children and the future they’ll have to face, then take heart, because God has given us specific instruction in His Word! He calls us to disciple them in the ways of the Lord, cover them in prayer, and love them with the love of Christ.
Do these things, and trust in God to do the rest. They are his children more than they are our own, and He loves them more than we will ever be capable of loving them!
We have been blessed to be appointed as their earthly parents, so let’s in turn be a blessing to them by surrendering them to the love and purposes of our Heavenly Father!
[From October 25, 2018]