Crosswalk.com aims to offer the most compelling biblically-based content to Christians on their walk with Jesus. Crosswalk.com is your online destination for all areas of Christian Living – faith, family, fun, and community. Each category is further divided into areas important to you and your Christian faith including Bible study, daily devotions, marriage, parenting, movie reviews, music, news, and more.

Intersection of Life and Faith

<< Today’s Insight with Chuck Swindoll

Today's Insight - September 18, 2013

  • 2013 Sep 18
  • COMMENTS
Today's Insight from Chuck Swindoll

The Bricks and Mortar
by Charles R. Swindoll
Psalm 127:3–5

If a relationship with God is the foundation of a home (Psalm 127:1–2), the children are the bricks and mortar. Wise King Solomon continues his celebration of the strong home with a focus on the value of children.

Children Born within the Home

Behold, children are a gift of the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one's youth.
How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them;
They will not be ashamed
When they speak with their enemies in the gate. (Psalm 127:3–5)

The songwriter grabs our attention with "Behold!" He says, in effect, "Pay attention . . . listen up!" These three verses take us a step further as they address the coming of children into the home, and the parents' proper attitude toward them.

Notice three titles the songwriter gives to children: (1) "gift," (2) "reward," and (3) "arrows." Each one calls for some analysis.

The term "gift" is a translation of the Hebrew word that means "property, possession, that which is shared or assigned." Children are the Lord's possessions. Children belong to Him; He graciously assigns to or shares with parents. Now this third verse doesn't say "some children" or even "most children," but simply "children," implying all children . . . your children! There is no such thing as an "accidental birth" or a "surprise pregnancy" from God's viewpoint. And wise are the parents who acknowledge the fact that their child is a personal gift from God. If you and I truly believe that each child is "assigned" by God, what a difference it can make with the child we may not have planned!

The word "reward" conveys the idea of pleasure, something given as a tangible proof of appreciation. Children are never to be viewed as punishment for God's displeasure—quite the contrary! The fruit of the womb is a token of God's love, His choice reward.

The word "arrow" is equally meaningful. You'll notice that the word picture is that of a warrior with arrows in his hand. Imagine the scene. A warrior in battle doesn't stop to make his arrows, nor does he ignore them. He uses them. He directs them toward a target. A parent is responsible for the direction of his children. A child, like an arrow, is incapable of directing himself. It is the basic responsibility of parents to direct the early lives of their children. This makes a great deal of sense when you consider that a child is born in a state of depravity and inner sinfulness. You must stop here and read Psalm 51:5 along with Psalm 58:3. Both verses verify that children are born in a state of iniquity. Solomon's saying in Proverbs 22:15 underscores this fact: "Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of discipline will remove it far from him." Children need parental authority.

What happens when a child isn't given direction? Proverbs 29:15 responds, "The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother." On the other hand, look at Proverbs 22:6 for a moment:

Train up a child in the way he should go, 
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

God gives us children with a delegated responsibility to care for what He treasures most in the universe: people. Each child, therefore, is to be cherished as a gift, prized as a reward, and directed like an arrow.

Used with permission. All rights reserved.

Listen to today's broadcast of Insight for Living with Chuck Swindoll at OnePlace.com.
Visit the Bible-teaching ministry of Chuck Swindoll at www.insight.org.

Archives

Follow Crosswalk.com