The work of marriage, childbearing and caring for parents comes to the fore again in Psalms 127, 128 and 139. (The work of childbearing is an important element of Psalm 113, “Participating in God’s Work (Psalms 113)“.) “Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table” (Psalm 128:3). Husbands and wives together engage in production of the most fundamental kind—re-production! Needless to say, the wife performs more labor in this endeavor than the husband. In the Bible this is not a despised role—it is understood to be essential for survival and was honored in ancient Israel. Beyond the bearing of children, wives typically managed the household, including both domestic and commercial production (Proverbs 31:10–31).
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