Psalm 49

1 Hear this, all you peoples; listen, all who live in this world,
2 both low and high, rich and poor alike:
3 My mouth will speak words of wisdom; the utterance from my heart will give understanding.
4 I will turn my ear to a proverb; with the harp I will expound my riddle:
5 why should I fear when evil days come, when wicked deceivers surround me
6 those who trust in their wealth and boast oftheir great riches?
7 No man can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for him

8 the ransom for a life is costly, no payment is ever enough
9 that he should live on forever and not see decay.
10 For all can see that wise men die; the foolish and the senseless alike perish and leave their wealth to others.
11 Their tombs will remain their houses forever, their dwellings for endless generations, though they had named lands after themselves.
12 But man, despite his riches, does not endure; he is like the beasts that perish.
13 This is the fate of those who trust in themselves, and of their followers, who approve their sayings. Selah
14 Like sheep they are destined for the grave and death will feed on them. The upright will rule over them in the morning; their forms will decay in the grave, far from their princely mansions.
15 But God will redeem my life from the grave; he will surely take me to himself.
16 Do not be overawed when a man grows rich, when the splendor of his house increases;
17 for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him.
18 Though while he lived he counted himself blessed and men praise you when you prosper
19 he will join the generation of his fathers, who will never see the light of life.

20 A man who has riches without understanding is like the beasts that perish.

As you look at these verses picture that you are listening to Christ preaching his messages from the hills of Galilee. The message is to answer the statement: No man can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for him the ransom for a life is costly; no payment is ever enough that he should live on forever and not see decay. Let’s face it we cannot redeem our life. For all can see that wise men die; the foolish and the senseless alike perish and leave their wealth to others. There is no way that man, despite his riches, does not endure; he is like the beasts that perish. This is the fate of those who trust in themselves, and of their followers,who approve their sayings.

However, there is a way and it is also in his message: But God will redeem my life from the grave; he will surely take me to himself.

Do not be overawed when a man grows rich, when the splendor of his house increases; for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him. Though while he lived he counted himself blessed and men praise you when you prosper he will join the generation of his fathers, who will never see the light of life. A man who has riches without understanding is like the beasts that perish.

One event that a people will experience as they grow older is the end of a life of a love one or someone who is close to them. Yes, I am writing about a funeral. I experienced my first funeral (my father’s) when I was only fifteen. Then four months later, I attended the funeral of my brother. So at the age fifteen when most young adolescence were enjoying the experience of youth I had already lost a father and a brother and started the process of asking God the hard questions of life. Today as I was attending the funeral of a friend’s father, I realized that understanding one’s life is like putting together a puzzle. As I study Psalms 139:16, “All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” I realize that God has the top of the puzzle box with the picture. We are the ones that have to put together the pieces of the puzzle of life.

Remember John 3:16 God gave us a way to redeem our life.

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