The Last Laugh
“Unextinguished laughter shakes the skies.”—Homer
1. When the Lord brought back the captivity of Zion,
We were like those who dream.
2. Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
And our tongue with shots of joy.
3. Bring back our captivity (Do it again!), O Lord,
As the streams in the South.
4. Those who sow in tears
Shall reap in joy.
5. He who continually goes out weeping,
Bearing seed for sowing,
6. Shall doubtless come in with shouts of laughter,
Bringing his sheaves with him. —Psalm 126:1-6
In the first stanza of this psalm (1,2) the poet looks back to an historic, unnamed deliverance from famine, plague, or siege. God “brought back” His people from captivity, a deliverance that prompted “shouts of joy.” Tears and sorrow were turned into laughter.
Memories of past joy engender a call for deliverance from present sorrow so that the psalmist and his people may laugh again (3,4). Can it be that occasions of mirth and laughter here on earth are a preamble to that great guffaw when we finally “come in”?
Life is hard; we “go out” weeping, bearing our burdens of sorrow and disappointment (5,6). But one day we shall come in, and then we will see what God has "prepared for all those who love Him" (1 Corinthians 2:9).
Then our sides will split with laughter!