A song for those who go up to Jerusalem to worship the Lord. A psalm of Solomon.
1 If the Lord doesn’t build a house,
the work of the builders is useless.
If the Lord doesn’t watch over a city,
it’s useless for those on guard duty to stand watch over it.
2 It’s useless for you to work from early morning
until late at night
just to get food to eat.
God provides for those he loves even while they sleep.
3 Children are a gift from the Lord.
They are a reward from him.
4 Children who are born to people when they are young
are like arrows in the hands of a soldier.
5 Blessed are those
who have many children.
They won’t be put to shame
when they go up against their enemies in court.
A Pilgrim Song of Solomon
11-2 If God doesn’t build the house,
the builders only build shacks.
If God doesn’t guard the city,
the night watchman might as well nap.
It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late,
and work your worried fingers to the bone.
Don’t you know he enjoys
giving rest to those he loves?
3-5 Don’t you see that children are God’s best gift?
the fruit of the womb his generous legacy?
Like a warrior’s fistful of arrows
are the children of a vigorous youth.
Oh, how blessed are you parents,
with your quivers full of children!
Your enemies don’t stand a chance against you;
you’ll sweep them right off your doorstep.