Introduction

This Psalm, written by Moses, compares God’s grandeur with our frailty and mortality.

Verses
1Lord, you have been our dwelling place for all generations.
2Before the mountains were born,
before you had formed the earth and the world,
even from everlasting to everlasting, you are God.
3You turn man to destruction, saying,
“Return, you children of men.”
4For a thousand years in your sight are just like yesterday when it is past,
like a watch in the night.
5You sweep them away as they sleep.
In the morning they sprout like new grass.
6In the morning it sprouts and springs up.
By evening, it is withered and dry.
7For we are consumed in your anger.
We are troubled in your wrath.
8You have set our iniquities before you,
our secret sins in the light of your presence.
9For all our days have passed away in your wrath.
We bring our years to an end as a sigh.
10The days of our years are seventy,
or even by reason of strength eighty years;
yet their pride is but labour and sorrow,
for it passes quickly, and we fly away.
11Who knows the power of your anger,
your wrath according to the fear that is due to you?
12So teach us to count our days,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
13Relent, LORD!
How long?
Have compassion on your servants!
14Satisfy us in the morning with your loving kindness,
that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
15Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
for as many years as we have seen evil.
16Let your work appear to your servants,
your glory to their children.
17Let the favour of the Lord our God be on us.
Establish the work of our hands for us.
Yes, establish the work of our hands.

Questions

1. How does the Psalm describe God's timelessness?

v 2 Before the mountains were born,
before you had formed the earth and the world,
even from everlasting to everlasting, you are God.

2. The brevity of our lives is compared to God’s view of time. How long does a thousand years appear to God?

v 4  For a thousand years in your sight are just like yesterday when it is past, like a watch in the night.

3. How does the Psalm describe the days of our years?

v 10 The days of our years are seventy,
or even by reason of strength eighty years;
yet their pride is but labour and sorrow,
for it passes quickly, and we fly away.

Summary Points

  • v 1 and 2 God has always been in existence
  • v 3 to 10 In contrast, we have a limited lifespan and are subject to sins and mortality
  • v 11 to 17 We should fear God and seek to be wise. Moses asks God to bless us and grant us favour in his sight for all of our lives

 Timeline 1050 to 850 BC