‘Except the Lord Build the House…’

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In the course of my work for The Chalcedon Foundation, I’m reading a book about income inequality, the resulting lack of social mobility, and what to do about it. I can see that a great deal of hard work and research went into the writing of this book; and I can also see that what drives it is 100% pure worldly wisdom, devoid of any reference to God and showing no attempt at all to know His will.

Psalm 127 springs immediately to mind: Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it (v. 1).

This is one of the most profound verses in the Bible; and so, naturally, it’s also among the most ignored.

I plead guilty. When I sit down to work on one of my novels, I always pray for God’s guidance before I write a word. Well and good. But then I don’t even think of doing the same whenever I prepare to write a blog post or a column, to say nothing of more mundane tasks. It may be that it’s not really necessary to ask God for His guidance when I  wash the supper dishes–but what could it hurt? Meanwhile, it came to me today that I really ought to ask Him for His help in all my writing, not just the books: so I will do that, because I hope that all my writing is in His service. Even when I’m writing something just to get a laugh, because God blesses wholesome laughter.

We have been collecting and applying worldly wisdom all the time. We invent all sorts of jimcracks and procedures, and then never find the best way to use them. We heap up knowledge, yet grow no wiser. And so we in general, and the author I’m reading in particular, will not only fail to come up with the definitive answer to the problem we’re addressing, but we won’t even understand the nature of the problem–even if we think we do.

Wisdom sought apart from God will only take us so far, and never to where we need to go. For all our inventions, for all our worldly wisdom, the smartest people in the world just can’t get done any of those things they say they’re trying to do. And to make matters worse, a great deal of this wisdom is only foolishness. I think that explains, entirely, the condition of our universities.

There are an awful lot of houses getting built without the Lord’s advice–and an awful lot of houses falling down.

Everywhere you look.


6 comments on “‘Except the Lord Build the House…’

  1. I attended four year of high school at Shattuck School, a private, military [at that time], Episcopal boarding school. The school moto was “Nisi Dominus Frustra.” We students always translated it as “Not even masters [teachers] frustrate us!”

  2. Creation was subjected to futility when sin entered into the world, so it’s no surprise that human endeavors come to ignominious ends when they are undertaken apart from God’s will.

    All of our problems, from economic, to health (both physical and mental), to social issues, to you name it; all if these things stem from mankind’s fallen state. We can work to make things better, but we will never effect complete solutions until the Kingdom of God.

    That’s why the liberal block is so angry; most of them do not believe in God and therefore they don’t understand why the problems are so intractable.

    1. Nor does it help them that virtually no problems can be solved by the combination of ignorance, arrogance, and stupidity.

      Not to mention wasting their efforts trying to solve imaginary problems like Global Warming and lack of Gender Fluidity. But then the great thing about imaginary problems is that they last forever, they can never be solved, and they provide a perpetual excuse for raising taxes and creating bureaucracies.

    2. Both of those imaginary problems are playgrounds of Godless ideology.

      What saddens me, is that the colleges have become such an exercise is futility. They are so steeped in their own cultural theories that they don’t even bother to look outward at what is happening in the world around them. They have a belief system and that’s all that seems to matter.

      In this sense, they have essentially become a religious cult, unable to see anything but their own worldview. I think it’s catching up with them in real time. Their graduates are finding the job market is not impressed with their education. At this point, only S.T.E.M. graduates have much, if any hope of truly gainful employment.

      Yet this academic world thinks that they can solve all of the problems if only we would capitulate to their way of doing things.

    3. There is just no way America needs 10,000 people with masters’ degrees in Women’s Studies… but that’s what the collidges are producing.

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