Daily Family Worship

Psalm 133: A Song of Brotherly Love

by | Jul 3, 2024

psalm 133

Without referring to any specifics of David’s life, let us read the lesson which the Psalmist here teaches in this exquisitely beautiful but brief Psalm! The imagery that is employed is perhaps not so familiar to us as it would have been to an Israelite heart, but we may clearly understand the thoughts conveyed by the mention of fragrant ointment and perfume; it is like when Mary anointed the feet of Jesus with her precious ointment, causing the lovely aroma thereof to fill the whole house. We see what is meant by the holy oil being poured on the head of Aaron, and gradually trickling down until it reached the very hem of his garments; for it stands as an expressive picture – not only of family peace and love between brother and sisters of the same household and beneath the same roof, and not only of harmony and goodwill and kindly feelings in neighborhoods and communities – but also of that unity of spirit and bond of love which should exist between the members of the same Head, who are linked together by the same common but unbreakable tie of love to Him Who loves them! No sooner had sin entered the world, than brotherly love fled from the earth in dismay; and from the whole narrative of the Bible, one sees how – almost from the earliest days – the children of God mourned over and attempted to heal the wound. “Let there be no strife between thee and me, for we be brethren,” said Abraham to Lot. “See that ye fall not out by the way,” was Joseph’s charge to his brothers. “Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow?” asked Moses, when he saw two Hebrew men striving together. But we may also learn a lesson from the nature of the “oil of holy ointment,” which was used to anoint the high priest. It was no common oil; its materials were selected and named by God Himself, for the purpose of anointing and consecrating Aaron and his sons to the priestly office. Moses was commanded to speak unto the children of Israel, saying, “This shall be an holy anointing oil unto me throughout all generations.” “It is holy, and it shall be holy unto you.” It was all of Heaven’s own appointment and gift; it was not a mere creation of man; it was blessed and set apart by God, for the holiest of purposes. Similarly, “the fruit of the Spirit” which comes down from above “is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness”; while “the works of the flesh” and of the world “are hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, and murders.” We know how the angels’ song, at the birth of Jesus, proclaimed peace on earth and goodwill to man, springing from Him Who was the Prince of Peace; and the whole Church and the whole creation groan and travail in pain together, until that glorious and blessed period shall come, when “nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more!”

Lord Jesus, we praise You for being the life-giving Head of Your Church, and the Prince of Peace Who brings peace and goodwill to mankind! We repent of times when we have failed to live in brotherly love with each other, and we ask You to teach us how to imitate Yourself, so that the root of bitterness may no longer cause divisions among us. Amen.

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