A Christian Heritage

Psalm 22

This is a Psalm of lament, which as most turns from lament to praise. It is a Messianic psalm, especially evident in vv 16-18, sometimes called the Fifth Gospel account of the crucifixion. This doesn’t discount it’s present setting, a psalm of David, where David is in trouble, even near death and is calling out to God. Turns from not sensing God’s presence to praise, knowing God is there, and finally to answered prayer. Today, I want to look at a few verses that speak to the family.

Forefathers/mothers trust
4 In you our fathers put their trust;
       they trusted and you delivered them.
5 They cried to you and were saved;
       in you they trusted and were not disappointed.

Trust is a confession of confident hope in God’s love. In the psalmist’s time of need, he remembers the trust his forefamily had and how God delivered them.

Who in your family are your first generation Believers? Who in your family first came to know Christ and laid a spiritual foundation for your family?

In my family:
Loose family reunion: strong spiritual presence
Aurandt family ancestor, church planter in the area (planted three Lutheran churches – Waterstreet, Yellow Springs, St. John’s)

Creator God/stewardship of parents
9 Yet you brought me out of the womb;
       you made me trust in you
       even at my mother’s breast.
10 From birth I was cast upon you;
       from my mother’s womb you have been my God.

Psalm 139
God as source, as Creator.
Trust at an early age, the psalmist credits God with this.

“I was cast on you”
Infant Baptism: giving of a child to God. In continually lifting that child up in prayer.

Also translated: “you have entrusted me to my mother’s breast” Parenthood is an act of stewardship. God has given the gift of a child – his child, his creation – to you. He has entrusted the care of that child to you: the physical care, the spiritual care. For that child to be raised so that one day he/she may like the psalmist say, “you brought me out of the womb” and “you made me trust you”

If we believe that we each have been placed here for some work. That God has uniquely gifted us for participation in the body of Christ and to share Christ with world. Then as each child is born into this body, we recognize that God has some purpose for that child. As a congregation, as a parent, we must continually give that child to God and his purpose. We must pray first that that child will know Christ, as Lord and Savior and secondly, that God will guide that child to walk in way God has prepared. That God will reveal his will for that child’s life. And that’s a prayer that every parent should pray, no matter what age, what stage of life, their child is at.

Future Generations
30 Posterity will serve him;
       future generations will be told about the Lord.
31 They will proclaim his righteousness
       to a people yet unborn—
       for he has done it.
Tied to vv 4-5 with the trust of our ancestors

My mother’s salvation story: dad working in the strip mines, living in Pottersdale. Mom, by herself, singing “He washed my eyes with tears”. Mother never sat me down and said, "Now I want you to know this story." I came to know it because it was such a large part of who she was. She recalled and gave thanks for her salvation. I beleive a part of why I am here today is because of her story and the spiritual foundation she laid.

Why are you here today?
Who sowed those seeds in your family? Who laid a spiritual foundation for your family?

What kind of spiritual foundation are you laying for your family? What of your life is going to be remembered? What signs of commitment to God are regularly evident in your life?

One day we will all be gone, but these pews will be filled with people yet unborn, because you lived a faithful life, because you laid a spiritual foundation.

“He has done it.”
It is the work of God; no work of our own. “He has done everything.” Each generation will join in telling the story of redemption and of God’s kingship. As a messianic psalm, it tells a part of redemption’s story. Jesus died on a cross for us, so that he could bring us new life, eternal life. As v. 26 says, “may your hearts live forever!” And as we join in the telling of this redemption story, we add our own personal story, we tell our family’s story – what God has done for them; what God has done for us!

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