Tell to the generation to come

 

[Psalms 78:1-22]

 

‘The secret of the 3D gifted education for the Jewish people: Raise a child like a dove with a heart and a snake with a head’ says that in order to win in this competitive society, we must have a good heart (EQ) and a smart head (IQ).  Jesus also told His12 disciples this way: “"Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves” (Mt. 10:16).  This is what the Jews believe that ‘the heart (EQ) is pure, but the head (IQ) must surpass the wisdom of the world.’  That is why the Jews say that when their children are three years old, they continue to teach difficult laws.  It’s because when they learn the laws, they get picky about everything and don’t just skip things.  This is the secret that the Jews became the No. 1 nation.  The author of this article said, ‘How is the Jewish education different from ours?  The Koreans are as obsessed with the education of their children as Jews.  Why aren't so many excellent talents produced?’  Interestingly, if we look at the three stages of Jewish education for the gifted, First-Dimensional Gifted Education: Knowledge-oriented intelligence development, including IQ education in general school education; Second-Dimension Gifted Education: developing shrewd, smart, and intelligence; Third-Dimension Gifted Education: Wisdom Development.  If we organize these three levels of gifted education from low to high, it is in the order of knowledge, shrewd, and wisdom.  The goal of education is, of course, to raise it to the level of wisdom in the third dimension, but the reality of Korea always revolves around in the first dimension.  On the other hand, the gifted education of the Jews teaches the highest 3D wisdom, then the shrewd education, and finally the knowledge in the school.  In other words, in the process of making personality education with the Bible, wisdom and shrewd are developed (Internet).

 

It's an interesting Jewish three-dimensional gifted education.  In particular, it is interesting that Jews don’t prioritize knowledge-oriented intelligence development, which is the first-dimensional gifted education, in their children's gifted education, but first prioritize the development of wisdom, which is the third-dimensional gifted education.  That is why Jews are said to receive wisdom education through religious life from an early age and apply it to real life.  They believe that wisdom is a gift from God, and the foundation of wisdom is the fear of God.  It means that we must live keeping in mind that God gives wisdom to the humble.  Jewish wisdom is concentrated in the Old Testament Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Job and some sort of Jewish literature such as the Talmud, the Law and etc..  They structurize these content and forms into their lives so that wisdom penetrates broadly and deeply into their unique vertical culture.  Here, the vertical culture is the culture based on history, philosophy, thought, tradition, classics, and religion that make up the inner spiritual world of man.  In contrast, the  horizontal culture refers to the material, power, honor, fashion, and modern study and modern science human external metaphysics.  If the vertical culture is a value for an unchanging soul, the horizontal culture is for a constantly changing body.  While the vertical culture is a deep culture that seeks the meaning of life, the horizontal culture is a surface culture that seeks the fun of life.  The vertical culture strengthens the human spirit world and makes it a vessel that fosters inner self-confidence.  If the vertical culture is computer hardware, modern study or science is software.  When wisdom is great, knowledge can be properly used in it (Internet).

 

In Psalms 78:4-5, the psalmist is determined to “tell to the generation to come” (v. 4) and exhorts “That they should teach them to their children” (v. 5).  So, I would like to take three lesson from Psalms 78 about what we should tell our children  under the heading “Tell to the generation to come.”

 

First, we must tell to the generation to come the works of God.

 

Look at Psalms 78:4, 7 – “We will not conceal them from their children, But tell to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, And His strength and His wondrous works that He has done.  …  That they should put their confidence in God And not forget the works of God, But keep His commandments.”  God's works that the psalmist made known to the Israelites was the thing that happened starting from the Red Sea to all things that happened in the wilderness” (vv. 12-22) (Park).  From verse 12 and on, the psalmist says that in ancient times, in the land of Egypt, God did "wonders" before the ancestors of the Israelites.  What were those wonders?  It was the work of dividing the Red Sea and causing the Israelites to pass through (v. 13), the work of God leading the Israelites in the wilderness with the cloud by day and all the night with a light of fire (v. 14), the work of splitting the rocks in the wilderness and gave them abundant drink like the ocean depths (vv. 15-16, 20), the work of opening the doors of heaven and raining down manna upon the Israelites to eat (vv. 23ff) and so on.  But what was the problem?  If we look at verse 11, we can see the answer: “They forgot His deeds And His miracles that He had shown them.”  God did many miracles to the Israelites, but the Israelites forgot all the wonders He had done.  The Israelites easily forgot all the wonders God had done for them.  But it doesn’t seem to be the only problem for the Israelites.  We too easily forget what God has done in our past lives and the grace that He has given us.  So, just as the psalmist made up his mind and put it into action (77:11), we too must decide to remember God's wonders of old, the things He did in our lives, and determine to put it into action.

 

Second, we must tell to the generation to come the commandments of God.

 

Look at Psalms 78:5, 7 – “For He established a testimony in Jacob And appointed a law in Israel, Which He commanded our fathers That they should teach them to their children,  …  That they should put their confidence in God And not forget the works of God, But keep His commandments.”  God appointed a law in His covenant people, the Israelites, and commanded them to teach them to their children (v. 5).  And God commanded their children to teach their children to keep the commandments of God (v. 7).  Here, it can be said that the narrow interpretation of God's “law” refers to the Ten Commandments that Moses received at Mount Sinai at the time of the Exodus of Israel, and that the broader interpretation of it refers to all the commandments of God.  In addition to the word “a law”, the psalmist uses the word “a testimony” in verse 5a.  Its meaning is a testimony in the sense of proving that God has revealed Himself to His people from generation to generation (Park).  One of those self-revelations is found in Deuteronomy 6:4 –“ "Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!”  However, the problem is recorded in Psalms 78:10 – “They did not keep the covenant of God And refused to walk in His law.”  The background of this word is that despite the fact that the Ephraim descendants were good at fighting (Gen. 49:24), they were defeated during the conquest of Canaan (Jdg. 1:29) (Park).  The reason why the Ephraim descendants were defeated was because of their disbelief and disobedience, not keeping the commandments of God.  This is what the psalmist said in Psalms 78:17 and on about the sins of disobedience and unbelief of the ancestors of Israel: The Israelites still continued to sin against God and rebelled against the Most High in the desert (v. 17), in their greedy heart they put God to the test (v. 18), and doubted the power of God. (vv. 19-20).  Not only that, the Israelites spoke against God: “Can God prepare a table in the wilderness?  "Behold, He struck the rock so that waters gushed out, And streams were overflowing; Can He give bread also?  Will He provide meat for His people?" (vv. 19-20).  One God is commanding the ancestors of Israel and also to us: “These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.  "You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates” (Deut. 6:6-9).  God is not only commanding the Israelites to keep God's commandments in their hearts and diligently teach their children but also to us.

 

Third, we must tell to the generation to come to put their confidence in God.

 

Look at Psalms 78:7 – “That they should put their confidence in God ….”  The psalmist tells about the history of the Israelites’ sins in order to guard the Israelites of his time and their children (Park).  The intention was to make the Israelites, like their ancestors, not to sin by forgetting God's wonders and disobeying His commandments.  In some ways, the psalmist's conclusion is faith, not unbelief.  In other words, the psalmist's conclusion is to believe in God, not to doubt God.  In order to do this, the Israelites and we must remember God's wonders and obey His commandments.  Another way to think about it is to believe in God so that we can remember God's wonders and obey His commandments (Park).  The prophet Isaiah exhorts us: “Trust in the LORD forever, For in GOD the LORD, we have an everlasting Rock” (Isa. 26:4).  Only God is the subject of our eternal trust.  We must put our hope on the Lord who is our eternal Rock.  And we must show that life to our children.

 

This is the story of my uncle, Pastor Andrew Kim, who was hospitalized for cancer.  When I visited him on Monday morning, I laughed a lot while talking with him.  During that conversation, of course, we also talked about his wife and his two children.  During the conversation, the pastor in particular gave the names of his two son’s children.  When the eldest son gives birth to a son, he thinks of “Seung-gyeom” and when he has a daughter, he thinks of “Yeson”.  In the case of the second son, if he marries and gives birth to children, he said the son’s name is “Seung-yae” and if it is a dauther “Yae-bang.”  Why did the pastor name the descendants like these?  I think there were two reasons: The first is “humility” and the second is “prevention”.  When the pastor said he was proud, he seemed to have named his eldest son’s son with the heart of wishing that his grandson would be “humble”.  And for the second son's son, he gave the name “Yae-bang” because he thought that “prevention” should be taken.  When I thought of the names that Pastor Andrew made in his mind for his children’s children, I thought that the wise are the humble and the preventer.  The reason is that a wise person fears God and cannot be proud before God.  Rather, the wise man humbly obeys God's commandments, remembering God's works in his life.  And the wise never puts hope in himself or in the world.  He only hopes in the Lord.  I hope and pray that we will be able to teach our children and their children not only with our lips but also with our lives what God has done, God's commandments, and only hope in God until the day the Lord calls us to heaven. .

 

 

 

 

As I think about God’s precious gifts of my three children,

 

 

 

James Kim

(With a heart that wishes my dedication to teach my children God's works, God's commandments, and to put their hope in God)