VITAL SIGNS: God Desires Unity | Psalm 133 | Devotional
How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron's beard, down upon the collar of his robes. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.
This past summer during a mission trip to Panama, several of us woke up early on a Sunday morning to hike up a nearby mountain. From the Word of Life Camp, we had heard the mountain taunting, “Climb me if you can” all week, and we were determined to take the challenge. It was quite a hike. Tired and soaked with sweat in the early morning humidity, we finally made it to the mountain’s peak. The view was breath-taking. After some pictures, water, and granola bars, we began to walk back down. On the descent, one of our leaders, Arne, and I started singing. He cranked the praise songs out in Spanish and I crooned in English. Others joined in. It was a great time of worship.
The same type of thing was happening in Psalms 133. Each year at feast and festival time, worshipers walked the rocky roads that led up to Jerusalem. On the way, families joined other families to form rather sizable groups. And as they went up, they sang these “Songs of Ascent” (actually, our singing on the mountain in Panama was “Songs of Descent” because I was breathing too hard on the way up).
In this song, the psalmist likened unity to anointing oil poured out on Aaron the priest. It saturated his hair, beard, and clothes. The oil signified his being set apart (made holy) for service. Unity does the same thing for us. It sets a church apart for significant kingdom endeavors. It is also like the dense dew of Mount Hermon, richly nourishing plants and pastures. Unity nourishes and encourages God’s people to grow and serve others. Unity is the basis for holy service to the living God. No wonder the Psalmist said, “How good and pleasant it is when brothers (generic) live together in unity.”
Father, You desire unity. You see it as a good and pleasant thing. May we understand unity as You do. May we see it with Your eyes. Even when we disagree with our spouse, children, work associate, and/or friend, may we do our part to begin and end the discussion in unity because that pleases You. In Christ’s Name, Amen.