Spiritually Investing in Generations to Come

Psalm 78:1-8

I’m a visual learner. I have to see and feel how something works in order to do it. I took all shop classes in high school. I scored very highly on the mechanical section on the ASVB military entrance test. I believe there is great value in having a balanced laboratory for children and youth to learn how to worship in! They see and interact with other adults, their parents, and people of all generations.  They build relationships and close the generational gap. So that’s worship service. They may be getting very little out of the worship or the sermon, but they are seeing that it is something important to those they care about and that they are being cared for. The other side is they get to experience age-centered learning during other times such as mission groups, team kid, and youth ministry. We have a responsibility to spiritually invest in next generations. What does it look like if we don’t? Listen to Judges 2:10 “And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.” May this not be us. We put intentional emphasis on academics, on athletics, but not on the adoration of Christ. We ensure that our children can swing a bat, solve algebra equations, but fail to help them develop a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Everything is temporal, yet Christ is eternal. We live for the temporal when we should be living for the eternal.

The people of God have a rich history of being poor students of history! Because of their disobedience and lack of teaching the next generations the glory of God, they were made to repeat the same grade over and over again. There are shorter ways to get from Egypt to Palestine than through the wilderness of Sinai. Mount Sinai is about 200 miles out of the way. There is scarcely any water or shade. This is what he says through Moses to the people of Israel after a forty year detour in the wilderness, just before they cross over into the promised land (Deuteronomy 8:11–18) “Take heed lest you forget the Lord your God, by not keeping his commandments and his ordinances and his statutes which I command you this day: lest when you have eaten and are full, and have built goodly houses and live in them, and when your herds and flocks multiply, and your silver and gold is multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied, then your heart be lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage, who led you through the great and terrible wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water, who brought you water out of the flinty rock, who fed you in the wilderness with manna which your fathers did not know, that he might humble you and test you, to do you good in the end. Beware, lest you say in your heart: “My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.” You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant which he swore to your fathers.”

Where there lessons to be learned on this field trip? Did God provide even during their disobedience? Is there a promise of redemption even during times of great trial?

Psalm 78 recounts the goodness of God and reminds us to continually tell the coming generations.

Our Responsibility (Psalm 78:1-4)

a. To Listen (vv.1-3) How do we listen? We listen to teach! Our children may get nothing out of the worship service, but they may have questions. We listen to teach about the goodness and glory of God!
b. To Reveal (v.4) How do we reveal the things of God? We live them out! We strive with the power of the Holy Spirit to not have a church mask and a home mask that we wear. We strive to make them the same. We lean on the power of God and the people of God to help us reveal Christ to our children, our grandchildren, our neighbors, etc.

Our Resolution (Psalm 78:5-6)

a. An initiative. We can’t wait on others to do this! It has to be us!
b. An intentionality. We must kept this resolution at the top of our priorities. If families stop teaching the glory of Jesus Christ, they stop functioning in the manner in which God has intended for the family. The things of God are to be passed on from generation to generation.

Ongoing Results (Psalm 78:7-8)

a. Their own identity in Christ (v.7)
b. Their individual decision to follow God (v.8)