For all our days are passed away in your wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.
1. Our years are "determined" (Job 14:5); give entertainment to this thought, close as we are upon the end of another year. " Fear not, fret not, weary not, poor pilgrim of a day. The pilgrimage will soon be over. Thy days are determined. The number of thy months is with me. I have appointed thy bounds that thou canst not pass. Thou wilt soon accomplish as an hireling thy day. There is a time to be born, and a time to die."
2. Our years are connected the one with the other. They are not like adjacent islands, deep water flowing around and between. We go right onwards, treading on the same kind of ground to the end. Such, too, usually, is the growth of character in the individual man. It goes on growing through the year, and it will not stop growing at the end of one year, and then begin again to-morrow morning when the year is new. The growing may be quickened or it may be confirmed a little, by the impressions and the sanctities of this last hour; quickened or confirmed in goodness; or else, alas, the heart, passing through these solemnities and agitations without a real religious faith, will be hardened in evil, and made more impervious to the impressions of any future season. And yet here let us be careful, else we shall come near to the acceptance of the very worst intellectual doctrine of this time — the doctrine of inevitable necessity, or, religiously viewed, the doctrine of a moral continuity in character and being, which nothing can break. We never lose our personal identity, character runs on, the same thinking substance, the same immortal soul continues; but grace, that renovating, cleansing, saving power, is introduced into the consciousness, transforms the character, lives in the experience, brings out the Divine images, makes the "new creature in Christ Jesus." Need I say how prophetic our years become when we thus begin them in grace? Grace is the earthly name for glory. Glory is the heavenly name for grace.
(A. Raleigh, D.D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.