(Psa 49:11) Their inner thought is that their houses are forever And their dwelling places to all generations; They have called their lands after their own names.
(Psa 49:12) But man in his pomp will not endure; He is like the beasts that perish.
(Psa 49:13) This is the way of those who are foolish, And of those after them who approve their words. Selah.
Phillips: “This psalm is about poor rich people – people who have money, but that is allthey have. Family, fortune, friends, and future – nothing matters but money. Thesepeople are the orphans of eternity. When life’s moorings are untied they will be castadrift to be tossed upon the waves of a shoreless sea – without chart or compass,without sun or star, forever driven before the howling winds of God’s wrath deeper anddeeper into the dark.” From Commentary on the Psalms by Paul Apple
Welcome to Part 2 of Like The Beasts That Perish. Let's begin by looking at a couple of word definitions from the ancient Hebrew language in which this Psalm was written.
Pomp: יקר yeqâr yek-awr' value, that is, (concretely) wealth; abstractly costliness, dignity: - honour, precious (things), price.
Selah: סלה selâh suspension (of music), that is, pause: - Selah.
From Webster's Dictionary:
POMP, n. [L. pompa; bombus; Eng. bomb, bombast.]
1. A procession distinguished by ostentation of grandeur and splendor; as the pomp of a Roman triumph.
2. Show of magnificence; parade; splendor.
Hearts formed for love, but doom'd in vain to glow
In prison'd pomp, and weep in splendid woe.
I included the above definition from Webster's Dictionary as this definition is integral to our study of these verses today.
As I was doing an informal Bible study/devotional early this morning a verse from Genesis popped out at me as it relates to Psalm 49:11.
Gen 4:17 Cain had relations with his wife and she conceived, and gave birth to Enoch; and he built a city, and called the name of the city Enoch, after the name of his son.
Here we have the first recorded city named after a man. A few hundred years later Enoch died and the city named after him was suddenly under a lot of water. Enoch probably thought his city would live on in his glory forever, for all generations.
I am reminded of a shopping mall that somehow happened to have my last name, Bannister Mall (I have no idea of who this Bannister is or was) located in the suburbs of Kansas City. I jokingly stated to my dad shortly before he went home to be with Jesus, that we should just sell our mall, that we could put the money to real good use. Dad had quite a sense of humor. Shortly after that day he passed away, the mall was torn down and all that remains to this day is broken up pavement with an abundance of tall ugly weeds and litter strewn about. There is no longer memory of Bannister Mall, the pomp did not endure, and like the beasts Bannister Mall is no longer. Praise God, dad is in heaven, and I will see him again one day. Unlike dad, this is the lot for those who put their trust in family, fortune, friends and future. When life's moorings are untied they will be cast adrift to be tossed upon the waves of a shoreless sea, says Mr. Phillips.
1Sa 15:12 Samuel rose early in the morning to meet Saul; and it was told Samuel, saying, "Saul came to Carmel, and behold, he set up a monument for himself, then turned and proceeded on down to Gilgal."
Paul Apple states the following:
Death is UniversalThe Wise to the Stupid -- they all die and leave their wealth behindThe Proud try to ignore this harsh realitythey imagine that their wealth will enable them to live foreverBut in the end all die -- just like animals
1Co 3:19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God. For it is written, "He is THE ONE WHO CATCHES THE WISE IN THEIR CRAFTINESS";
G. Campbell Morgan:...There are two things which wealthcannot do. It can neither help a man to escape death, nor can it ensure the life of theone possessing it. The passion of the heart for immortality is manifest in the building ofhouses and the naming of the land. It is all useless. They are no more able to securepersonal immortality thus than are the beasts which perish. … From Commentary on the Psalms by Paul Apple