Psalm 49

Psalm 49

The benefit of faith is to have an eye to see the difference between what is eternal and what is transient. We praise God because we have an eye to see the beauty of eternal one. We do not pursue gold or fame because we know that they are passing away. We know that our soul is not satisfied until we abide in God. All the other things demand us more and more of our lives but they never give satisfaction. Once we know that truth, we can share it with others as the psalmist does here: “Hear this, all you peoples; give ear, all inhabitants of the world, both low and high, rich and poor together. My mouth shall speak wisdom; the meditation of my heart shall be understanding. I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will solve my riddle to the music of the harp. Why should I fear in times of trouble, when the iniquity of my persecutors surrounds me, those who trust in their wealth and boast of the abundance of their riches? Truly, no ransom avails for one’s life, there is no price one can give to God for it. For the ransom of life is costly, and can never suffice, that one should live on forever and never see the grave.”

Why do people want money? Because money can buy things and gives us the idea that we can control our life situations people want money. It is a control issue. However, can we control our lives? If we think we can, we are foolish. If we accept the fact that we cannot, we are closer to the wisdom. One of the advices that the psalmist gives to us is that our life is temporary and we need to invest in the eternal: “When we look at the wise, they die; fool and dolt perish together and leave their wealth to others. Their graves[c] are their homes forever, their dwelling places to all generations, though they named lands their own. Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish. Such is the fate of the foolhardy, the end of those who are pleased with their lot. Selah”

Once we accept this advice, we become freer. Whether we are rich or poor, whether we live or die, we can praise God who is in control. We do not insist that our lives should in my way. Not my will be done but thy will be done. At the end, we all die. The question is what do we die for? What is waiting for us after we die? : “Like sheep they are appointed for Sheol; Death shall be their shepherd; straight to the grave they descend, and their form shall waste away; Sheol shall be their home. But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol, for he will receive me. Selah”

When we die with faith in Jesus, we move from Sheol to God. There is our master who is waiting for us. This world is not our home. Nobody decorate the hotel room that they stay for one night. We do not buy furniture for our motel room: “Do not be afraid when some become rich, when the wealth of their houses increases. For when they die they will carry nothing away; their wealth will not go down after them. Though in their lifetime they count themselves happy—for you are praised when you do well for yourself—they will go to the company of their ancestors, who will never again see the light. Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish.”

We walk everyday our faith journey making our way to home. Let us enjoy all the people that we meet on the way. Let us appreciate all the events and things that experience that come into our lives. Sudden surprises and unexpected laughter will be the gift from God!

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About biblepreacher

United Methodist Church Pastor. My wife, Hysung Hong Lee, is also a UMC pastor and my children are all grown and have their independent life. We have now empty nest. I and my wife are collecting some mission eggs now in that nest!
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