The emotional impact of Psalms is an amazing thing. As a reader, I feel everything from exultation to despair. I can sense the claustrophobia of feeling that there’s just no way out. I can soar on the mountains of praise. How incredible to be drawn into the depths of emotion by the power of words!
Psalm 48 is just one example. In all honesty, much of the imagery means little to me. My relationship with God and with fellow Christians differs greatly from the relationship that the Israelites felt with God, their nation, Jerusalem, and the temple.
Yet the language stirs me. There is great passion in this song. And the song’s ending brings the foreign imagery home to me.
Walk about Zion and go around her; count her towers; consider her ramparts; go through her palaces, that you may tell it to the next generation. For such is God, our God forever and ever; He will guide us until death. Psalm 48:12-14
Psalm 48 follows in the pattern of much of the imagery in Psalms. It tells a story of God’s greatness. Of His acts. Of the scope of what He has done for his people. These last verses explain why telling this story is so important. Future generations need to know it! They need to be told! They need to remember!
It is no different in our world. We are not a united nation. We are not even truly a community in our faith, living and working together. We have no temple to walk with our children, nor do we have a city whose walls have persevered through the centuries. But we do have tangible examples of God’s greatness. We have evidence of what He has done on behalf of His people.
Are we telling our children?
God truly is “our God forever and ever.” There are so many ways we can point future generations toward Him. And we must. It is critical that we walk about the borders of our faith, considering our ramparts. Oh how we must know the depths of our faith. We must be intimately familiar with the tangible evidences. Why? Because one day we will be called upon to tell it all to the next generation. Will we know what to say?