Meditations on the Psalms #303

Psalm 133

Of the fifteen psalms of ascent Ps133 is the last of the four attributed to King David . The most likely occasion was when David was finally received as king over all the tribes of Israel, ending a terrible season of national division and discord. (2Sam5:1; 1Chronicles12:38-40.)

It begins with an exhortation to ‘behold’ – to take notice. What follows is important and deserves our attention, because it is a wonder seldom seen, therefore behold it! It is ‘good’ and ‘pleasant,’ It is the characteristic of real Christians. It is well worthy of admiration; pause and gaze upon it! It will charm you into imitation, therefore behold it well! Unity amongst God’s people is something good and pleasant. It is ‘good’ because it reflects God’s heart and purpose of unity among His people (John17:20-23). It is pleasant because it makes life together, as God’s people, so much more enjoyable than seasons when constant bickering and conflict dominate.

David had in mind the relationship that God’s people have with one another, not with the world around them. Believers should work to have good and peaceable relationships with all others (Rom12:18), but here the focus is on relationships among God’s people.
This song was especially relevant for pilgrims travelling together to Jerusalem. They were coming from many different walks of life, regions, and tribes, as they gathered for one purpose: the worship of the Lord in Jerusalem.

The imagery of v2 shows that unity is a rich abundant blessing. The threefold repetition ‘running down,’ ‘running down,’ and ‘down’ – the Hebrew uses the same verb each time – emphasizes that the blessing of Aaron’s anointing was from above himself, that is, from God.
King David then used a second word picture to show how wonderful unity is among the people of God. It is also like the rich ‘dew’ that covers Mount Hermon, making it green and moist (v3). It is a distinct contrast to the dry wilderness found in other parts of Israel. Unity among God’s people makes life thriving and healthy. Church health is a key to growth. Unity passages with our ‘forevermore’ pilgrims are common in the NT e.g.Eph1:9-10, Rom12:18.

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