Reading the Word
Psalm 78:1–8 (ESV)
1 Give ear, O my people, to my teaching; incline your ears to the words of my mouth! 2 I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings from of old, 3 things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us. 4 We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done. 5 He established a testimony in Jacob and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers to teach to their children, 6 that the next generation might know them, the children yet unborn, and arise and tell them to their children, 7 so that they should set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments; 8 and that they should not be like their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation whose heart was not steadfast, whose spirit was not faithful to God.
Understanding and Applying the Word
This long psalm begins with the call to “Give ear” or “Hear”. The picture is of a teacher who is teaching a group and is calling them to attention. The subject of the teaching is Israel’s history and it is valuable because God has revealed himself throughout that history. By learning from Israel’s past, the people can know God and avoid the mistakes of their ancestors.
The Bible is a book that teaches us about God by recording how he has acted and revealed himself throughout history. As believers, we study that history so we can know him, know what he has done, and know what he desires of us now. The Christian faith is grounded in history, with its central focus on the events of Jesus’ death and resurrection. It is our duty and to our benefit to learn that history and to teach it to the next generation so that his name might be glorified in us and that our children do not stray from him. How well do you know your history?
**Shaped by the Word is a daily Bible reading devotional. Please use the links at the bottom to subscribe to this page. You can also share this post with your friends through social media using the buttons below. Thanks for reading!