Thus far we have looked at the God-fearing man or woman and the God-fearing family. In the last stanza of this psalm, the family focus broadens out to embrace the larger people of God and even the city in which they live. It is a reminder that however blessed we or our families may be personally, that blessing is always incomplete unless it embraces others, too. It must include God's people living around us, as well as generation after generation down the long road of life. 

I imagine that anyone who has ever tried to raise a family comes to the Bible's pictures of domestic joy with a certain amount of skepticism. There is a very good reason for it. Families are made up of people, people are sinners, and sin disrupts even the best of relationships. But the psalm is not promising utopia. When it speaks of the God-fearing, fruitful family, as it does in verse 3, it is not implying that there will never be difficulties any more than it is promising material blessing without the frustrations and even failures of physical work in verse 2. 

Yesterday we looked at the first important responsibility for the person who would experience God's blessings, namely, to fear the Lord. But merely thinking about God is not enough in itself. Right thinking leads to right acting, which is why the psalm goes on to say that those who are blessed are not merely those who “fear the LORD” but also those “who walk in his ways.” I recognize this connection weekly and even daily on The Bible Study Hour, my radio program, when I describe our purpose as “preparing people to think and act biblically.” 

There is an important balance between Psalm 128 and the previous one. In Psalm 127 the psalmist wanted to show that all blessings are attributable to God alone. Unless God is working in us and with us, every human endeavor is in vain. In Psalm 128 the poet reminds us that there are nevertheless important responsibilities that rest on the person who would partake of God's blessings. In short, he must fear God and obey him. 

"Blessing” is a wonderful word. In spiritual matters, it has to do with God's particular favors to his people. Because God is generous and great, his blessings are generous and great as well. Once we have begun to experience them they seem to be without limit. God's blessings go on and on.