It [unity] is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion.
In my previous article, we learned about the metaphors and their meanings in Psalm 133:1-2 and their importance for our military families–namely, how unity spreads, unifies, and builds resolve–that necessary grit to overcome the challenges of the military lifestyle.
Today, we’ll unpack the meaning of verse 3. David, our psalmist, doesn’t want us to miss the all-important takeaway. This is the golden nugget of the entire psalm. Verse 3 says, “It [unity] is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion.” There is an interesting geography lesson that makes this psalm more meaningful.
David is describing two mountains: Mount Hermon and Mount Zion. Mount Hermon is the tallest mountain in northern Israel. It stands approximately 9,000 feet tall and creates the morning dew. Mt. Zion, located in Jerusalem, is a mere 2400 feet tall. Yet, the dew manufactured over Mt. Hermon falls on both, even though these two mountains are 145 miles apart.
Additionally, these two mountains can also represent the northern Kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah. Recall in the Bible that after King Saul died, Israel split into two kingdoms. The tribes of Israel struggled with conflict and ultimately their disunity split the nation in half. Their struggle went as far back as the patriarch Jacob–each tribe going after its own objectives and separating from the rest. Here’s our golden nugget: It was David’s desired that like the dew that fell over the two mountains, he longed for unity to fall on both kingdoms, so the Lord could bless both. Thus, Psalms 133 provides us with three great illustrations for our families.
1). Unity spreads, unites, and multiplies – Like the oil that ran down Aaron’s head, beard, and collar, unity that is present in our homes is contagious. It has the power to influence other members of our homes. It multiplies by spreading to successive generations.
2). Unity brings blessings – Like the dew that falls on both mountains, blessings can fall on our families and our children’s families, and
3). Mt. Hermon symbolizes God – Like Mt. Hermon that manufactures the dew, likewise, God is the maker and sender of the blessings of unity.
Psalm 133 is a vivid portrait of God’s desire that His children live in unity. And when we do, He blesses us. He doesn’t want our homes divided by disunity, each member seeking its own agenda and self-seeking ways apart from the others. His desire was that like the oil that ran down from the head, to the beard and to the collar of the robe, sanctifying and unifying his spirit to Jesus’ spirit, so today Christians are one body, unified by one Spirit.
Spiritual unity then, is one aspect of the Holy Spirit and when we allow the Holy Spirit to lead us, we are then able to put the garment of unity on. I think it’s possible that King David learned a few lessons about unity, albeit the hard way with poor parenting, but this only made his appreciation and desire for unity all the greater.
Psalm 133 was David’s hope that his kingdom people would love God and seek after a spirit of unity–to bring two separate kingdoms together under one Headship to be the recipients of God’s blessings. This same spirit of unity is what brings the hearts of your family together today, establishing the spiritual energy of your home to persevere constant fluctuations common to our unique lifestyle. Ephesians 4:3 is our walking papers. We are to “make every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (nrsv). In doing so, God blesses us with harmonious relationships.
Lisa Nixon Phillips is a retired military wife who believes that faith and prayer make a lasting difference in the lives of military families. She combines her warm and gentle approach with her passion to mentor military wives and mothers of today. She enjoys leading women’s Bible studies and helping women grow in their faith. Lisa simply enjoys being a source of spiritual encouragement pointing them to Jesus and His Word. She hopes her experiences as a former military wife will inspire them to seek God while living out a difficult lifestyle. She is currently pursuing her credentials to be a Christian Life Coach with an emphasis on military families through the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC). Lisa writes, speaks, and blogs on themes that address the military lifestyle at www.LisaNixonPhillips.com. Lisa’s book, Faith Steps for Military Families releases May 1, 2014. To connect with Lisa on Facebook, go to www.Facebook.com/faithstepsformilitaryfamilies and on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/lisanixonphilli