The True Philosophy of Life
Psalm 77:19-20
Your way is in the sea, and your path in the great waters, and your footsteps are not known.

"Thou leddest Thy people." The whole philosophy of life is here, here for us no less than for Israel. If we think we need some other theory of living because the Israelites were only poor slaves, and we intelligent nineteenth-century Christians, we are greatly mistaken. After all these centuries, God has nothing to add to this, that men let Him lead them, in His own way, through the sea if so He will it. The true philosophy of life is summed up here, in simply following God. Over the Apennines there is a wonderful railroad, on which, in a space of less than seventy miles, one passes through forty-three tunnels, some of them of very great length. The road is full of magnificent outlooks, but every few moments you go plunging into a tunnel. And certainly the traveller over this road would show his good sense by sitting still and being carried along the line of the rail; and not by getting out at the first station, and striking into the mountains to find another path, because he did not like the tunnels. He would be almost sure to be lost and to starve to death. The road has been built to carry him to his destination by the shortest way, and he will get there more quickly and safely through the tunnels than in any other way. Oh, if we could only believe the same thing of God's way! We want to build our own road, all out in the light; and the consequence is, it is much less direct than God's, and much more dangerous, and we cannot bring it out where we wish. And remember, it is not all tunnels either: in the regions of the high rocks, where the tunnels are needed, are the most glorious prospects. If God's way is partly in darkness, the light places are full of beauty, commanding such outlooks of mercy and love as ought to reconcile us to the intervals of darkness, I remember once, in Italy, climbing a mountain up which a broad, fine carriage road led almost to the summit; but there the road suddenly ceased, and nothing appeared but a narrow footpath leading round the shoulder of the mountain, and that soon dwindled into a sheep-track; and the sun beat down with terrible power, and the way was rough, and more than once I was tempted to go back; but never shall I forget the vision which burst upon me as at last I reached the end of the narrow way: it repaid all the toil. So, I say, do not be afraid of the narrow way if God turns you into it. The great thing is that He lead you; and if He lead, even though His footsteps are not known, you know that His way is in holiness, and ends at last in eternal good.

(Marvin R. Vincent, D. D.).

Parallel Verses
KJV: Thy way is in the sea, and thy path in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known.

WEB: Your way was through the sea; your paths through the great waters. Your footsteps were not known.

The Trackless Ocean and its Master Pilot
Top of Page
Top of Page