Lucia's Blog: May 2015
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Thursday, May 28, 2015

CLOTHED IN CHRIST

 "After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, 'Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb."'
Revelation 7:9-10



As Christ makes His abode in us and we in Him through the Spirit, we come to know God more and are changing more into His likeness, His image.  We become more conscious of His Son's sacrifice, that cruel death on the cross.  We awaken and become aware that He is clothing us in His likeness: His meekness, His steadfastness, His lovingkindness, and His righteousness.

"But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit."   2 Corinthians 3:18

As our heart and mind is being changed into newness of life; being renewed and transformed, our life should reflect this "inner clothing."  It must be reflected on the outside.  As we walk in His steps, being regenerated in heart and soul, we are without a doubt reflecting the One Who has given us new life.  Meekness, righteousness and holiness can only be shown when one clothes himself with Christ. 
"But you did not learn Christ in this way, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth."  
 Ephesians 4:20-24

Our Lord Jesus said in His Sermon on the Mount:  
"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth."   
Matthew 5:5

We live in a culture where gentleness, meekness, simpleness, modesty, humility, long-suffering and submissiveness are qualities that are not taught and cultivated.  Notice that among those qualities that Jesus spoke of in His Sermon on the Mount we find “meekness” (gentleness).  This meekness is what Jesus portrayed for us when He walked among men.  
"Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."   
Matthew 11:29
"You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble."  I Peter 5:5

Our Lord and Savior is the best role model of meekness. Moses is another great example of someone who modeled meekness.
"Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."  Philippians 2:8
"Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men that were upon the face of the earth."  Numbers 12:3

My question to you is:  Don't you think that showing off, being prideful and pretentious is exhausting?  Do we really want to be something or someone that we are not?  Do we want to look like someone full of insecurities, with an outward image that we are not?  Such an outward image does not give any rest to the heart and soul.  It is only when we are clothed in Christ that we can find true rest for our weary soul, rest in His Father's love, sitting at His Son's feet and harnessed with His yoke on our shoulders.  Our Father has adopted us as His family through His Son's sacrifice. Through His precious blood, baptized for the forgiveness of our sins, we are sanctified, washed and justified. 

So, to whom do we have to prove ourselves as being worthy, to man or to God the Father?  Why worry so much about the outward man?  Why not worry more about the inward man, who is being renewed in His glory and likeness?  
"Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God." 
I Corinthians 6:11
"Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth."  John 17:17
 "Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day."   
2 Corinthians 4:16

As we clothe ourselves in Christ, inwardly, we are imitating Him in His likeness.  It starts to show outwardly. Likewise, when we focus on clothing ourselves outwardly, in fleshly ways, we will show the fruits of the flesh and not the ones of the Spirit.  We will tend to be rebellious,  ungodly, unrighteous, vain, conceited, selfish and arrogant.  Lest we forget, we must not be absorbed in self but rather we must die to self.  Lest we forget, we are to courageously die to the “voyage of self.”

"But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts."  Romans 13:13
 "But flee from these things, you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness."   
2 Peter 1:6
"But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please."   
Galatians 5:16-17

As those who profess godliness, we must clothe ourselves with the right attitude of heart, righteousness, holiness, love and gentleness.  What this means is that we must clothe our inner man as well as be renewed and be transformed daily.  It is in clothing the inner man in the Spirit of Christ that we shine our light to a world of darkness.  We reflect the beauty of Christ in us by the washing, sanctifying, justifying and renewing of our soul. This can only be accomplished by surrendering to our Savior.  It is the only way to glorify our Father in heaven.
"Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven."  Matthew 5:16

Consider the following questions of how we ought to walk before men:  

  1. Are we reflecting Christ in our lives by the way we live?  
  2. Do we look more like the world on the outside by the way we conduct ourselves to others? 
  3. Do we show others an inner man who is changed and renewed in the likeness of God?  
  4. Do we inspire and encourage others to come to Christ by our godly example?  
  5. Or rather are we stumbling blocks by our bad example?  
  6. Do we focus more on Christ by living a life that is worthy of Him?  
  7. Do we show gratitude to Him Who made Himself a sacrifice and died that cruel death?  The only way that we can show gratitude is by living a life that is upright, blameless.
  8. Does His beauty shine in us outwardly?  Remember, this dark world will not likely see His beauty if they do not see it reflected in us.

We do not want to be like the Pharisees who focused on outward appearances.  They were ostentatious and self-righteous and completely empty and unclean inside because of their lawless deeds.
"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness."  
Matthew 23:27

Jesus did not carry Himself as someone who was showing off although He was God.  He humbled Himself. He surrendered to His Father.  He knew His reward was in heaven.  Meekness is the opposite of the prevailing human, empty and vain wisdom.  God's wisdom is the opposite of fleshly wisdom.  His wisdom is contrary to the world's.

"Behold, my servant, whom I uphold; my chosen, in whom my soul delighteth: I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.  He will not cry, nor lift up his voice, nor cause it to be heard in the street.  A bruised reed will he not break, and a dimly burning wick will he not quench: he will bring forth justice in truth."  Isaiah 42:1-3

When Christ clothes our heart walking in His Spirit, we are no longer slaves of lawlessness but of righteousness.  By clothing ourselves with Christ, we are reflecting His excellencies.  We are clothed in His love, righteousness and humility.  We are adorning ourselves in His holiness, sanctification, righteousness and mercy.  We are adorning the doctrine of God our Savior in every respect, Titus 2:10. Our souls will then find that peace that surpasses all human understanding.  But it has to be God's WAY.
"And, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness... For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification."   Romans 6:18-19
"But the humble will inherit the land And will delight themselves in abundant prosperity."  Psalm 37:11

May the Lord teach and show us His ways and thoughts.  May our inner man be renewed and regenerated day by day.  May He give us wisdom to reject the vanity of the outward man that decays day by day.  May we strive to be more like Him and not  be caught up in the pride and vanity of the world.  May we reflect Him, being clothed with His grace and righteousness.  May we die to ourselves so that we can show His beauty.

"The meek also shall increase their joy in the Lord, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel."  Isaiah 29:19
"For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.  For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ."  Galatians 3:26-27
"The one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked."   I John 2:6

Luci


I'd like to leave you with this beautiful sacred Hymn:


"My Hope is Built on Nothing Less"

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus' blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus' name.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

His oath, His covenant, and blood
Support me in the whelming flood;
When every earthly prop gives way,
He then is all my Hope and Stay.
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh, may I then in Him be found,
Clothed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne!
On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

SIMPLICITY IN CHRIST

"But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ."  
2 Corinthians 11:3



The simplicity that there is in Christ brings us freedom.  Our Lord Jesus Christ came to set free those who were captives because of the slavery of sin.  

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.  He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed."  Luke 4:18

So often we are led astray with subtleties, false teachings, busyness, riches, possessions, achievements, goals, desires, activities and dreams.  These can only lead us away from the simplicity of resting in Christ.  The more we engage ourselves in all of these activities, achievements and goals, the easier it is for us to become captives.  In other words we are enslaved to them.  Jesus said our heart cannot serve two masters, meaning we cannot serve Him and also our earthly desires and possessions. 
"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth."  Matthew 6:24

Simplicity in Christ starts in the heart of man.  It is a way of life that lives in the heart rather than one's desires and possessions.  It is the peace that we find in Christ that produces in us a deep satisfaction.  It is that inner peace that makes us less attached to such desires and possessions.  We no longer feel the need for them to fill us and satisfy us.   It is the heart that is filled with idolatrous attachments to earth's possessions, the heart that crowds out Christ.  Our heart must first seek after Christ and all spiritual riches.   Earthly riches and possessions and other tasks must take a less important place in our heart.  Let us not be fools and become deceived by subtleties.  These can be simply a thought or an attitude of the heart.   God can bless us only if we serve Him with the right attitude of heart.  Think about what our prayers and petitions communicate to God.  Are they focused mainly on material gains and possessions?  Are we asking only for material blessings?  Or are we asking Him that we might get to know Him better?  I have no doubt we pray to Him for our financial needs and physical needs, but are we truly praying for all the heavenly and spiritual riches?  How to be better followers of Him?

How many of us plan our lives for security and earthly wealth, but wander aimlessly in matters of spiritual things?  We forget that God desires that we be more motivated and zealous in spiritual things for His kingdom's sake rather than in the gain of earthly possessions.  God wants us to grow in the depth of our relationship with Him.

"Do not weary yourself to gain wealth, cease from your consideration of it.  When you set your eyes on it, it is gone.  For wealth certainly makes itself wings like an eagle that flies toward the heavens."  Proverbs 23:4-5

Even when God has blessed us with material riches, the simplicity of our heart in Christ yearns to bless others and not just accumulate it all for ourselves, forgetting that every good gift comes from above, from the merciful hand of God.   Simplicity is knowing that God bestows upon us material blessings but in the end we know in our heart they all belong to Him, the author of all blessings.  The only way to stop becoming slaves or captives of our own possessions and material riches is by knowing that we are not going to take any of those possessions to heaven.  

All that God demands of us is that we obey Him and walk in His ways, that we fear HIM.  It is true that God blesses us with many blessings but we must never forget that He also wants us to be sure to praise Him for each and every blessing.  He wants us to never forget Him, which is what we do when we disobey His commandments.  Lest we forget Him when we are prosperous, we must be humble and not proud.  Lest we forget, He wants us to remember all His steadfast love for us.  LET US BE CAREFUL!  Let us remember what happened to the Israelites when they became ungrateful forgetting their LORD, becoming proud rather than humble, Deuteronomy 8:6-16.

"Therefore, you shall keep the commandments of the Lord your God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him...   Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments and His ordinances and His statutes which I am commanding you today;  otherwise, when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them, and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply, and all that you have multiplies, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. He led you through the great and terrible wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water; He brought water for you out of the rock of flint.  In the wilderness He fed you manna which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end."

So often the thrill of living a bountiful life of blessings causes us, in our hearts, to forget God, Who is the Author (the Source) of all these.  It is in all this forgetfulness and the enjoyment of plenty that we walk further and further from God.  We start walking in the direction of the altar of  self and wealth. Not only do we go the wrong way but also we start worshiping at the altar of self.  We begin to believe all the lies about our self-sufficiency.  This is sad!  This is why JESUS spoke so strongly about  prosperity, earthly riches, and the entrapment it brings to us.
"Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."  Matthew 19:24

Our Lord Jesus desires and calls us to live a peaceful, simple and free life in Him.  A life that is unhindered by slavery to possessions, prosperity and wealth.  He wants us to have our treasures only in Him and the eternal life that He has promised to all those who believe and keep His commandments.  But let us not forget that our hearts must be fixed only on Him.

"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."  Matthew 6:21

Jesus our Lord has given us His Word, His teachings, in relation to financial freedom; yet so often they are conveniently ignored and skipped.  The financial freedom that He wants for us is not one that stores up wealth but rather the one that brings freedom from the vain pursuit of it.  We find true freedom when we pursue the peace that it is only found in pursuing and seeking after Him.  It is in seeking Him and pursuing Him that we are going to find true satisfaction in whatever it is that He provides for us.  YES, we must learn to be content with what He provides.  This will set us free from the love of money and wealth.

"Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, 'I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you."'  Hebrews 13:5
"Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy." I Timothy 6:17

May our Lord keep our heart free from the entanglements of this world and its possessions.   May we allow Him to show us His peace and rest and to seek His riches.  May we have the wisdom to not focus on such earthly things.  May He show us His wisdom and His ways which teach us the simplicity of a heart that must abide in us in order to abide in Him.


Luci


I leave you with the beautiful words of the sacred melody, "Be Thou My Vision"


Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

Be Thou my battle Shield, Sword for the fight;
Be Thou my Dignity, Thou my Delight;
Thou my soul’s Shelter, Thou my high Tower:
Raise Thou me heavenward, O Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
Thou mine Inheritance, now and always:
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of Heaven, my victory won,
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.




Tuesday, May 12, 2015

THE RICHES AND GLORIES OF GOD'S LAW, PSALM 119 – PART THREE

  "Let my lips utter praise; For thou teachest me thy statutes.   Let my tongue sing of thy word; For all thy commandments are righteousness."  
Psalm 119:171-172



Q.  PE:  God's Wonderful Word Directs Our Steps.

  • Obeying God's Wonderful Testimonies.  (verse 129)
"129 Thy testimonies are wonderful; Therefore doth my soul keep them." 

"Thy testimonies are wonderful."  The Psalmist is once more expressing his awe and delight toward the Word of God on an ongoing basis.  Jesus is called Wonderful, and so are the uttered Words of God. God's Word and Testimonies are truly amazing!

"Therefore doth my soul keep them."  His enduring and abiding delight in God's Word produced in him a significant obedience.  An obedience that was in his inner soul. 
  • Receiving the Light Giving Word.  (verses 130-131)
"130 The opening of thy words giveth light; It giveth understanding unto the simple.  131 I opened wide my mouth, and panted; For I longed for thy commandments."

"The opening of thy words giveth light."  The Psalmist repeats the thought that God's Word brings light to him.  It gave him a clearer vision, clarity.  Often the Word of God does not penetrate the heart and mind of men because of their prejudices and indifferences.  They refuse to let the Word of God enlighten their hearts.

"It giveth understanding unto the simple."  God's Word is easy, clear and life giving to the simple who is thirsty for understanding and knowledge.  One does not need to be intelligent or a genius to learn and understand His Word.  Truly those whose hearts are simple are the ones who frequently are despised and ridiculed but God does not forget them.  The simple can draw nearer to God's Word with confidence, awaiting God to give them understanding.

"I opened wide my mouth, and panted."  Since the Word of God is clear enough for the simple, the Psalmist longed for God's Word like a hungry and thirsty animal who pants after water.  The word "opened" implies an animal's urgent eagerness of thirst and hunger.

"For I longed for thy commandments."  The Psalmist longed to know, keep and teach God's Commandments. 
  • Four Petitions Rooted in the Word of God.  (verses 132-135)
"132 Turn thee unto me, and have mercy upon me, As thou usest to do unto those that love thy name.  133 Establish my footsteps in thy word; And let not any iniquity have dominion over me.  134 Redeem me from the oppression of man: So will I observe thy precepts.  135 Make thy face to shine upon thy servant; And teach me thy statutes."

"Turn thee unto me, and have mercy upon me."  The Psalmist is actually making two petitions:  For God to look and to be merciful.  He was confident God was going to answer him since He loves those who love Him.  This is God's way of looking upon them (turning His attention) and being merciful to those who love Him and His Word. 

"As thou usest to do unto those that love thy name."  To love God's name means:  To love the person of God, love His character, His revealed Word and love His glory. 

"Establish my footsteps in thy word; And let not any iniquity have dominion over me."  He asked for God's mercy that he might walk uprightly before God.  His primary desire was to not let sin have dominion over him.  Many today direct their steps in anything but the Word of God.  Steps of:  feelings, lusts, friends, parents, circumstances, fate and comfort.  He wanted his steps to be firm and grounded in the Word of God to avoid being mastered by sin.  The apostle Paul said there was great danger when we allow ourselves to be mastered by sin:  "12 All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything."  I Corinthians 6:12.

"Redeem me from the oppression of man."  This third petition acknowledges the dangers from our oppressors.  Those who would oppress and oppose all righteousness.

"So will I observe thy precepts."  Here the Psalmist is not just asking God to free him from man's oppression so he could obey him better but rather to surrender to Him in complete obedience.

"Make thy face to shine upon thy servant."  This is the Psalmist 4th request.  He wants to encounter God's grace and goodness.  To be at peace and to know Him better. 
  • Sorrow for Those Who Reject the Law of God.  (verse 136)
"136 Streams of water run down mine eyes, Because they observe not thy law." 

"Streams of water run down mine eyes."  This is a good example of a poetic hyperbole in the Psalms.  Though these were not literal streams of water running down the Psalmist's eyes, he is speaking exactly according to the literal style of poetry.  His tears were tears of compassion toward those who reject and despise the Word of God.

"Because they observe not thy law."  The Psalmist is troubled over the sins of others and the consequences.  The Psalmist grieves the same way Jesus grieved over Jerusalem, Matthew 23:37-39; Mark 3:5.


R.  TSADHE:  The Purity and Truth of God's Word.
  • The Righteousness of God and His Word.  (verses 137-138)
"137 Righteous art thou, O Jehovah, And upright are thy judgments.  138 Thou hast commanded thy testimonies in righteousness And very faithfulness."

"Righteous art thou, O Jehovah, And upright are thy judgments."  God's character of righteousness is exhibited in His Word (Judgments).  It implies the authenticity of God's revealed Word. Not only His thoughts but also His very own character.

"Thou hast commanded thy testimonies in righteousness And very faithfulness."  He repeats the idea of the previous verse.  God's revealed Word reflects both His righteous character and His faithfulness. 
  • Zeal and Love for God's Word.  (verses 139-140)
"139 My zeal hath consumed me, Because mine adversaries have forgotten thy words.  140 Thy word is very pure; Therefore thy servant loveth it."

"My zeal hath consumed me, Because mine adversaries have forgotten thy words."  The more his enemies despised God's Word, the more the Psalmist resolved to be zealous for God's Words. His primary goal was to honor His Word.  His admiration and respect for God's Word was not passive.  The living and active Word of God brought him forth a living and active answer.  His zeal implied action and energy.

"Thy word is very pure; Therefore thy servant loveth it."  The Psalmist loved the perfect purity of God's Word.  God's inspired Word is perfectly pure and holy.  The Bible gives us an infinite number of reasons why we ought to love the Word of God and the God Who gave it to us.  Why?  Because it is:

  1. The Word of the LORD,  Genesis 15:1.
  2. The Word of God, Luke 8:11.
  3. The Word of the Kingdom, Matthew 13:9.
  4. The Word of salvation, Acts 13:26.
  5. The Word of grace, Acts 14:3.
  6. The Word of the gospel, Acts 15:7.
  7. The Word of faith, Romans 10:8.
  8. The Word of the cross, I Corinthians 1:18.
  9. The Word of reconciliation, 2 Corinthians 5:19.
  10. The Word of Truth, 2 Corinthians 6:7.
  11. The Word of life, Philippians 2:16.
  12. The Word of Christ, Colossians 3:16.
  13. The Word of His power, Hebrews 1:3.
  • Holding Fast to the True Word. (verses 141-142)
"141 I am small and despised; Yet do I not forget thy precepts.  142 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And thy law is truth."

"I am small and despised; Yet do I not forget thy precepts."  Though he felt despised and insignificant in his own eyes and the eyes of others, yet he found comfort and strength in God's Word.  We have examples of this in young David, I Samuel 16:10-13; and Paul in 2 Corinthians 11.  Yet they found courage in God and His Word.  The Psalmist did not allow his emotions to take hold of him, but rather he drew nearer to the Word of God without abandoning it when he felt discouraged, "small and despised."   It is so easy to run away from God and His Word when one feels this way.

"Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And thy law is truth."  This is exactly the joy and glory that Christians enjoy because God's glory is His righteousness that never changes. 
  • God's Word Gives Life in Times of Trouble and Anguish.  (verses 143-144)
"143 Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me; Yet thy commandments are my delight.  144 Thy testimonies are righteous for ever: Give me understanding, and I shall live."

"Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me; Yet thy commandments are my delight."  The Psalmist found delight and kept God's Word despite his difficulties and trials in life.  He treasured God's Word in good times and bad times (anguish and trouble). 

"Thy testimonies are righteous for ever: Give me understanding, and I shall live."  In the midst of the Psalmist's troubled and challenging times, he found understanding from God's Word even more vital and relevant to him.  He could understand this because God's righteousness is everlasting.


S.  QOPH:  Praying to the God of the Bible. 
  • Crying Out to God and Hoping in His Word.  (verses 145-147).
"145 I have called with my whole heart; answer me, O Jehovah: I will keep thy statutes.  146 I have called unto thee; save me, And I shall observe thy testimonies.  147 I anticipated the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy words." 

"I have called with my whole heart; answer me, O Jehovah: I will keep thy statutes."  The Psalmist is pleading with God that he might keep His Law (Statutes) in perfect obedience.

"I have called unto thee; save me,  And I shall observe thy testimonies."  This plea is repeated from the previous verse.  He is again crying out fervently to God for wisdom and strength that he might be able to obey His Testimonies, His Law.  This is the kind of prayer that pleases God. 

"I anticipated the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy words."    It is evident that the Psalmist fervently depended on God and His Law (Word).  He would wake up early in the morning to seek God in prayer (crying out) and in the meditation of His Word (I hope in Thy Words).   The Word of God and his prayer gave him hope.  Prayer and the study of the Word of God are vital.  Likewise, we use the Word of God in our prayers to be effective.  In prayer, the Word of God reveals:  the nature and heart of our God, the One we pray to; thanksgiving for His eminence; our praise; His righteous will; His promises to those who love Him faithfully; the substance for our prayers, as we read the Scriptures. 
  • Seeking the Word That Gives Life With a Diligent Heart.  (verses 148-149)
"148 Mine eyes anticipated the night-watches, That I might meditate on thy word.  149 Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according to thine ordinances."

"Mine eyes anticipated the night-watches, That I might meditate on thy word."  The Psalmist not only would wake up early to seek God (as in the previous verse), but he also would await the night to meditate on God and His Word.  Jesus is our example of one Who would pray early in the morning, Mark 1:35.  On some occasions, Jesus would pray all night, Luke 6:12.

"Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according to thine ordinances."  The Psalmist is petitioning God to hear him according to His righteousness and mercy (lovingkindness).  Moreover, he asks God to revive him according to His Ordinances (justice).  We ask God to forgive our sins according to His Ordinances and His lovingkindness (mercy).  God's children are able to pray for forgiveness because of the blood of Jesus that cleanses us when we sin.  We also pray for His Ordinances (justice) on earth when wickedness abounds. 
  • Near and Far From His Law.  (verses 150-151)
"150 They draw nigh that follow after wickedness; They are far from thy law.  151 Thou art nigh, O Jehovah; And all thy commandments are truth."

"They draw nigh (near, closely) that follow after wickedness."  The Psalmist could perceive when the wicked who oppose him was near.  Likewise, he could sense when they became a threat to him.

"They are far from thy law."  Though they came closer to him, they were far from God's Word.

"Thou art nigh (near), O Jehovah."  Though the wicked were both near to him and far from God's Word, he knew that God was near.  He had drawn nearer to the Psalmist through His Word.

"And all thy commandments are truth."  Since God had drawn nearer to the Psalmist, he could see with clarity that all of God's Commandments are Truth.  He recognized that God's Word is truly inspired and infallible. 
  • Trust in God's Everlasting Word.  (verse 152)
"152 Of old have I known from thy testimonies, That thou hast founded them for ever."

"Of old have I known from thy testimonies."  There is an old relationship between the Psalmist and God's Laws (Testimonies).  His extraordinary love and appreciation for the Word of God was deep.  His profound love for the Word had developed deep roots with time.  The Psalmist testified of God’s Testimonies:

  1. How he prayed - God testifies when He answers the prayers of the righteous because he had prayed with all of his heart that God might help him understand His Law.  (I have called with my whole heart, 119:145).  
  2. What he prayed for - God helps him to observe His Laws or Testimonies.  (I have called unto thee; save me, And I shall observe thy testimonies, 110: 146). 
  3. When he prayed - God helped him early.   (I anticipated the dawning of the morning, and cried, 119:47).  
  4. The reasons for his request - God helps him because of His lovingkindness.  (Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness, 119:149).  
  5. How God answered his prayer - God is near.  (Thou art nigh, O Jehovah, 119:150).  
  6. His testimony to His everlasting faithfulness.  (Of old have I known from thy testimonies, That thou hast founded them for ever, 119:152).

"That thou hast founded them for ever."  His long lasting love and reverence to the Law of God (Testimonies) led him to understand how eternal they were (founded, forever).  The more one studies and meditates of God's Word, the more one can understand its divine origin.


T.  RESH:  Revival According to the Word of God. 
  • A plea for Revival From God's Word.  (verses 153-154)
"153 Consider mine affliction, and deliver me; For I do not forget thy law.  154 Plead thou my cause, and redeem me: Quicken (revive, new life)  me according to thy word.

"Consider mine affliction, and deliver me."  The Psalmist is acknowledging a life of suffering, yet he is not impatient but asks God for deliverance, God's hand of rescue.

"For I do not forget thy law."  Some are driven away from God and His Word in times of affliction.  For the Psalmist, all his troubled and challenging times drew him closer to God and His Word.

"Plead thou my cause, and redeem me."  He is seeking help and salvation.  He knew he needed God to plead (defend) his cause and he needed Him to redeem him.

"Quicken (revive, new life) me according to thy word."  This thought is repeated throughout the Psalm.  He wanted God to bring him back to life, to make him alive, according to His Word.  The Word of God is our source of revival. (“the power of God unto salvation,” Romans 1:16). 
  • The Wicked Are Far From Salvation.  (verses 155-156)
"155 Salvation is far from the wicked; For they seek not thy statutes.  156 Great are thy tender mercies, O Jehovah: Quicken me according to thine ordinances."

"Salvation is far from the wicked; For they seek not thy statutes."  The wicked are far from God's Law.  Why?
  1. Because they flee from it. 
  2. Because they will not seek His Statutes.  
  3. Because they are proud.  
  4. Because their lawlessness (wickedness) grows out of their rejection of God and out of hearts hardened against seeking God through His Word (For they seek not thy statutes).  
  5. Because they preferred to live in their wickedness rather than to humble themselves before God in total surrender so that He might forgive them.   
  6. Because they are arrogant in their disobedience to God, Titus 1:16.   
  7. Because they love lawlessness and hate righteousness.  Paul stated in Galatians 5:19-21 the same thing about those who abhor righteousness and walk in sin.

"Great are thy tender mercies, O Jehovah."   Though the wicked in their arrogant disobedience are far from salvation as well as God’s Word (Statutes), God's tender mercies are free to all who will seek Him.  It means that God is not far because of His tenderhearted mercy.  Also, that He is ready to show mercy to ALL who seek after Him.

"Quicken (revive) me according to thine ordinances."  This same thought is repeated in verse 154.  The Psalmist underlines the significance of God's Word (His Ordinances) as the starting point and our measure of revival.  Revival is God's tender mercy to us, His grace.  But we must honor that revival by crucifying sin in us to live for Him exercising godliness. 
  • Obeying God's Word Despite Persecution.  (verses 157-158)
"157 Many are my persecutors and mine adversaries; Yet have I not swerved from thy testimonies.  158 I beheld the treacherous, and was grieved, Because they observe not thy word."

"Many are my persecutors and mine adversaries."  This is indeed the cost that we all have to pay for loving His Word.  It is the price we have to pay for taking our cross in a world that despises the Word of God.  It is the price we have to pay for confessing Christ to a world of darkness.  Like the Psalmist, we live in a real world full of persecutors and enemies of His cross.  Persecution is our trail of faith and our strength of perseverance.  (Acts 20:22-24; Philippians 2:14-16).

"Yet have I not swerved from thy testimonies."  Although the Psalmist was surrounded by a cloud of persecutors and enemies, he did not renounce, despair or doubt his faith and his love for God and His Word.  He knew that when one lives godly, persecution and afflictions will arise.  Instead, he was resolved to obey and focus on the Word of God.

"I beheld the treacherous, and was grieved, Because they observe not thy word."  It is noticeable throughout this Psalm, how much the writer loves and honors the Word of God.  The riches and glories of God's Law were very dear and close to his heart.  They were more precious than his own life.  Because of his intense love, zeal, and honor toward God's Word, he felt grieved, when both God and His Word were being disgraced.  We must feel deeply grieved to see others who are lost because of sin and choose to harden their hearts toward God's Word.  We must feel grieved when they insist on living a life of lawlessness and refuse to repent so that their Physician might heal them.  I personally grieve painfully because they refuse to turn to God and prefer to die.  
  • Revived by the Truth and Everlasting Word.  (verses 159-160)
"159 Consider how I love thy precepts: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according to thy lovingkindness.  160 The sum of thy word is truth; And every one of thy righteous ordinances endureth for ever."

"Consider how I love thy precepts: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according to thy lovingkindness."  Loving God's Precepts as the Psalmist declares, is a distinctive characteristic that sets apart those who are God's children.  We, like the Psalmist, must ask God to revive us by His loving kindness not because we deserve to be helped but rather because we desire and trust to be helped according to His loving kindness. 

"The sum of thy word is truth; And every one of thy righteous ordinances endureth for ever."  The Psalmist loved to abide in God's Word (His Ordinances).  He again declares the infallible character of God's Word.  His entire Word is "everlasting true."  The Word of God is as true in Genesis as it is true in Revelation.  His Word is flawless and endures forever.


U.  SHIN:  In Awe of God's Word.

This section has no specific prayers at all, but instead, there seems to be a quiet and obedient waiting for God. 
  • The Treasure of God's Awe-Revealed Word.  (verses 161-162)
"161 Princes have persecuted me without a cause; But my heart standeth in awe of thy words.  162 I rejoice at thy word, As one that findeth great spoil."

"Princes have persecuted me without a cause."   This Psalmist interacted with princes and rulers among men.  Apparently, these rulers persecuted him without a cause.  He had not broken their laws, harmed them, was not rebellious, did not oppose them and yet he was punished for loving God and His Word.  Isn't it something that God chastens His people and the world persecutes these same people because of their godliness?  (Hebrews 12:4-11).  This is a repeated pattern from the beginning and will go on until the end.  Persecution was the Psalmist's glory because it was His Master's cross.

"But my heart standeth in awe of thy words."  This great man of God was in constant awe of God's Word.  Even persecution by those in authority would not keep him from being in awe of God's Word with reverence.  He loved God's Word in good and bad times.  It is this awe and reverence that sets apart God's people.  Men such as Joseph, Moses, Nehemiah, Josiah and many more.

"I rejoice at thy word, As one that findeth great spoil."  His awe of God's Word made him love God's Word as one who rejoices when he finds a rich spoil as he had found in God's Word.  But one needs to be reminded that this rich spoil (treasure) is not gained without hardship or distress.  The Psalmist knew the treasure he had found in God's Word was precious and enriching.  The original Hebrew has the word treasure as spoil or plunder from battle.

Our reverence for God's Word is what measures our awe of God's Word.  The same way that spoil is obtained by fighting and plundering the dead in the battlefield of their riches, so are the riches of God's Word plunder that we must fight for. 
  • Eternally praising the Law Maker, the God of the Word.  (verses 163-164)
"163 I hate and abhor falsehood; But thy law do I love.  164 Seven times a day do I praise thee, Because of thy righteous ordinances." 

"I hate and abhor falsehood; But thy law do I love."  The hatred and love in this verse in connected perfectly.  One who dearly loves the purity and the Truth of the Word of God will without a doubt hate all lying, falsehood.  We cannot be in awe of God's Word and rejoice in it unless we hate all that is contrary to the Word.  The enemy of God’s Word here was falsehood. 

"Seven times a day do I praise thee, Because of thy righteous ordinances."  God's righteous Judgments (Ordinances) and the glory of His Word are enough reason to praise Him.  This is exactly what the Psalmist did.  He praised God seven times a day.  It was an endless praise. 
  • The Peace that Obedience to God's Word Brings.  (verses 165-166)
"165 Great peace have they that love thy law; And they have no occasion of stumbling.  166 I have hoped for thy salvation, O Jehovah, And have done thy commandments." 

"Great peace have they that love thy law; And they have no occasion of stumbling."  Here is where the Christian, the child of God, finds his true happiness.  It is summed up in one word, peace.  The immense love that the Psalmist had for God's Word brought him great peace and stability in his life.  Nothing would cause those who love God's Word with all of their heart to stumble.  Despite the storms of life, there is peace for them that do the will of God.  They are at peace with God because they love His Law.  Consider why we are at peace with God when we love His Law and observe it.
  1. A peace obtained by the reconciling blood of Jesus.  
  2. Peace because of a good conscience.  
  3. At peace with all men.  
  4. At peace, because we put to death sin and are alive to righteousness.  
  5. At peace because of our love for our neighbor.  
  6. At peace, because all things work together for our good.

"I have hoped for thy salvation, O Jehovah, And have done thy commandments."  Here the Psalmist is portraying the kind of active faith and trust that saves. An active faith produces obedience to God's Law (Commandments).  An obedient faith that would save him.  This is the kind of active faith spoken of in James, keeping our eyes fixed on Christ as our foundation and cornerstone.  That is the evidence of our hope.  We obey His Commandments because we hope for salvation.  
  • Keeping the Word of God.  (verses 167-168)
"167 My soul hath observed thy testimonies; And I love them exceedingly. 168 I have observed thy precepts and thy testimonies; For all my ways are before thee."

"My soul hath observed thy testimonies; And I love them exceedingly."  Like the Psalmist, those who hope in God's salvation can convey this joyful delight in His Law (Testimonies).   The Psalmist kept God's Word by keeping God's Commandments, Testimonies, and Precepts in complete obedience.  He knew that the same God Who gave the Word would also see and examine his life.  God sees and examines the ways of man.  Notice the reverence for God Himself when he says "Thy precepts, Thy Testimonies before Thee" and not just for Scripture itself.

V.  TAV:  Sought by God and His Word.

As the Psalmist comes near the end of this great Psalm, his petitions increase in force and in fervency.   He seems to suddenly be falling to his knees in supplication, coming near before the throne of God's grace.  Many have been his tears and prayers.  His earnest petition is to come nearer to God's throne in humility and faith.  He seems to be crying out in earnest prayer to His LORD, perhaps because his soul is at risk or may be because the enemy surrounds him within his walls.  This nearness leads him to end this Psalm in deepest humility, begging to be sought out like a lost sheep.  What an honor to be able to remind our LORD, "You are my rock and my fortress!  You have given me Commandments to save me." 
  • "According to Thy Word."  (verses 169-170)
"169 Let my cry come near before thee, O Jehovah: Give me understanding according to thy word.  170 Let my supplication come before thee: Deliver me according to thy word."

"Let my cry come near before thee, O Jehovah: Give me understanding according to thy word."  Here, we see the Psalmist as one who dearly loves God and is humbly approaching God's throne of grace.  He is petitioning in a humble spirit of supplication to help him obtain understanding according to His Word.  He desired his ways and thoughts to be transformed according to the Word of God. The urgency of his need made him cry out and come near to God in prayer.  What a privilege we have to come near God.  Why?
  1. Because we know the way is open.
  2. Because we can have access to our God entering into the holiest by the blood of Our Lord and Savior.  
  3. Because we know that through the veil, that is our Lord, we are able to tear down the walls of partition and are able to enter into the presence of our God, to rush into Him.
  4. Because we are able to open our mouth before Him, to anticipate that our supplication, our prayer, would come near His throne of righteousness and grace.  
  5. Because we know this is the Way to our God. 
  6. Because we know this Way is always open to those who love Him and obey Him, that is Christians.  
  7. Because we know with confidence that we are able to approach God and His throne of Grace since our sins have been cleansed, and we have been redeemed.  
  8. Because we have been made righteous by His blood and stand pure, knowing that we not only have access but also confidence.  
  9. Because we know that we have access to Him with confidence as the Lord Himself.  
  10. Because we know that our God delighted in His Son as well as in those who have been made one in His Son by the sprinkling of His blood.  
  11. Because we know we have been made complete in Him.  
  12. Therefore let us glory, knowing that we have a "Priest over the house of God" Who offered Himself as our sacrifice and incense for us.  This is precious, priceless and beyond words for me!!

"Let my supplication come before thee: Deliver me according to thy word."  It is beautiful to see the Psalmist's faith as the oil that lights the flame of his supplication.  Every one of his petitions is wished according to His promises, according to His Word.  God's promises were the very inspiration of his supplications before his God.  He wanted God's deliverance according to the promises of God's Word.  It is beautiful! 
  • Praising God and Speaking of His Word.  (verses 171-172)
"171 Let my lips utter praise; For thou teachest me thy statutes.  172 Let my tongue sing of thy word; For all thy commandments are righteousness." 

"Let my lips utter praise; For thou teachest me thy statutes."  The Psalmist's yearning was to bring God a word of praise.  This is worthy of God.   He knew that often our words can be wicked and vain.  He had resolved in his heart to use his lips, his mouth, his tongue, to worship, praise and honor God and His Word (Statutes).

"For thou teachest me thy statutes."  When one has learned God's Statutes, he delights in praising God because he has been taught His Word by God Himself.  Notice that the Psalmist did not learn to praise God with his lips by nature but rather because God's Truth taught him, taught from God Himself.  The Word of God taught him how to praise Him which became his own delight.

"Let my tongue sing of thy word; For all thy commandments are righteousness."  To speak to others on behalf of God and for Him must be our greatest desire and delight since God's Word has been our Teacher and has taught us to give praise.  We honor God when we speak and show others that all His Commandments are righteous.  Since we know the purity and infallibility of God's Word, it should make us want to talk about His Word (Commandments) to others and share it.  We must show God's light to all men for them to glorify their Creator.  We must be willing and be encouraged to speak for God and His righteousness to all, especially sinners so that they might be saved.  There is power in the Word to penetrate man's heart that it might be changed and transformed into the likeness of God.  It is our duty to speak the Word to all people and not shed innocent blood.  We need to be like the Psalmist who praised God and spoke of His Word without any reservation whatsoever.  Let us not be cowards but rather have the courage of those great men who have spoken of His Word no matter what their circumstances were. 
  • Longing for Salvation and Loving the Word of God.  (verses 173-174)
"173 Let thy hand be ready to help me; For I have chosen thy precepts.  174 I have longed for thy salvation, O Jehovah; And thy law is my delight."

"Let thy hand be ready to help me; For I have chosen thy precepts."  Since the Psalmist had opted to obey and keep God's Word (Precepts), he felt he could courageously ask God for help in his defense.  God's hand and God's Word provided him help.  They go hand in hand since God's Word is the mediator of His hand. 

"I have longed for thy salvation, O Jehovah; And thy law is my delight."  There is a beautiful connection between longing for salvation and delighting in God's Law.  Why?  Because salvation from sin comes from the Word and according to His Word.   "Having been begotten again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, through the word of God, which liveth and abideth."  I Peter 1:23.  For the Psalmist, longing for God's Word and delighting in God's Word was natural.  Salvation must be grounded upon the Word or Law of God.  We must create in us, in our souls, a very intense longing for His salvation as well as a more intense delight in His Law.  God's salvation is the hope and yearning of the faithful and will continue to be until the day He shall come again in glorious majesty so that we may be fully and eternally satisfied in complete redemption, taking us with Him forever. 
  • Leaning on the Word of God and Seeking God, the One Who Seeks us.  (verses 175-176)
"175 Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; And let thine ordinances help me.  176 I have gone astray like a lost sheep; Seek thy servant; For I do not forget thy commandments."

"Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; And let thine ordinances help me."  The Psalmist recognizes that to praise God, there must be life.  Moreover, he acknowledges that his soul needs both that life and the counsel or instruction of God's Word.  He understands that to establish and strengthen a healthy and strong relationship with God, one must have both.  A living soul is able to praise his Creator.  A living man is able to speak God's Words, His Declarations.  He is also praying for salvation for which he was longing.  He is hungry for God's Ordinances, and he wishes to have an even higher and enduring delight, instead of self-gratification.  When the living Word of God enters our heart, we become living souls whose primary desire is to praise Him.  The Psalmist’s great need for God and His Word, his love and devotion, made him more spiritually dependent upon God.  How? 
  1. Because he needed more understanding,119:169.
  2. He needed deliverance, 119:170.
  3. He desired to worship God with an upright heart, 119:171-172.
  4. He needed his soul to live to live uprightly, 119:173-174.
  5. He needed strength to persevere to the end, 119:175.
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy begat us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, unto an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you."  I Peter 1:3-5.
When the Psalmist says, "And let thine ordinances (Judgments) help me," he is asking God to enlighten him with His everlasting Word, His character and His perfection as the God of his salvation Who is worthy of all praise. 

"I have gone astray like a lost sheep; Seek thy servant."  The Psalmist wants to end on a very touching note.  He is recalling all his weaknesses and sinful inclinations, sinful habits (astray like a lost sheep), and therefore is asking God to seek him.  He is humbly confessing before his God all his flaws and weaknesses.  He desires to become upright.  He like us has gone astray like lost sheep, wandering from the fold but have been rescued by the Lord becoming His sheep, His own possession.  The Psalmist prayed like so many of us for God's help, to have a clearer understanding of His Judgments and be cleansed from our sins.  It is impossible to find joy when one is separated from his God.  God in His infinite mercy has helped us through His Word to find the Way back, the straight path.  We had wandered from that path, and yet the Shepherd sought us even though we were not seeking Him.  He helped us find our way back to Him.  The great Shepherd seeks out His flock, scattered without anyone to deliver them and lead them.  "He restoreth my soul."  This touches my heart deeply!

"For I do not forget thy commandments."  God sought His servant in His Word.  His Word is the only means by which He seeks after us.  His Word:
  1. Tests our heart. 
  2. Gives us confidence.
  3. Gives us hope.
  4. Strengthens us.
  5. Reproves us.
  6. Chastises us.
  7. Admonishes us.
  8. Helps us.
  9. Instructs us.
  10. Gives us understanding.
  11. Saves us. 

This lovely Psalm ends with a great reminder of the power and importance of the Word of God (Law), its riches and glories.  The Psalmist reminds us of the fact that God can come to us seeking us only through His Word, and then only when we seek Him from a sincere heart.  Without God's helping hand to restore our soul, we cannot find our Way back to Him.


CONCLUSION:

God in His everlasting mercy has provided us with the written Word in order that it may be written in our mind and inward heart.  He has given us His revealed Word in order to adopt us and restore our soul from death.  This is His faithfulness and grace to us. God's Law is perfect and able to change man's heart in order that he may return to Him and be eternally saved in the heavenly fold.

 "After these things I saw, and behold, a great multitude, which no man could number, out of every nation and of all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, arrayed in white robes, and palms in their hands; and they cry with a great voice, saying, Salvation unto our God who sitteth on the throne, and unto the Lamb.  And all the angels were standing round about the throne, and about the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honor, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.  And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, These that are arrayed in white robes, who are they, and whence came they?  And I say unto him, My lord, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they that come of the great tribulation, and they washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  Therefore are they before the throne of God; and they serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall spread his tabernacle over them.  They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun strike upon them, nor any heat:  for the Lamb that is in the midst of the throne shall be their shepherd, and shall guide them unto fountains of waters of life: and God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes."  Revelation 7:9-17.  

This magnificent Psalm has reshaped my soul and my spirit into a more hopeful, trusting, loving and faithful child of God and His Word.  There is no doubt in my heart after reading this precious Psalm that man can be complete, perfect in Him, in His likeness, holy and upright.  Why?  Because in His Word, His Law, we have everything that we need to become flawless, pure, righteous, godly, undefiled and zealous for good works as children of God.  But we need to love His Law, all of His Commandments in order to have a heart willing to be fashioned into His likeness.  It is not impossible.  His Law is not burdensome.  I yearn to have the heart that this Psalmist had!

Luci






Tuesday, May 5, 2015

THE RICHES AND GLORIES OF GOD'S LAW, PSALM 119 – PART TWO



 "How sweet are thy words unto my taste! Yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!  Through thy precepts I get understanding: Therefore I hate every false way."   
Psalm 119:103-104


Not everything that is sweet is good for us.  Even healthy sweet things have to be eaten in moderation, but the Law of God is a sweet thing that we can eat and enjoy to excess without harm.  Let us continue to sing with the Psalmist the lovely 119th Psalm.

  • The Goodness of God Even in Correction.  (verses 67-68)
 "67 Before I was afflicted I went astray; But now I observe thy word.  68 Thou art good, and doest good; Teach me thy statutes."

"Before I was afflicted I went astray; But now I observe thy word."  God has brought the Psalmist back into a relationship with His Word by humbling him and setting him right after he had gone astray.  He had learned the hard way but now he wants to be devoted to God and His Word.  Often our trials and suffering keep us from being faithful to Him and His Word.  But this is when we must pray with confidence that God will set us right by teaching us good discernment in order to have a righteous disposition.  When we ask God to teach us through His Word, this will keep us from going astray.  It is during affliction and adversity that one must be the most devoted to His Word.  This will save our souls.  Afflictions and suffering are good for us because they make us stronger in our faith and our pursuit of God.  Let us be obedient to Him and His Word even during our times of affliction.  Let us not be moved because of our afflictions or trials but rather let us continue being faithful to Him and His Word.  It is necessary that we go through afflictions, I Thessalonians 3:3; 2 Corinthians 4:8-11; Psalm 34:19; I Peter 1:7; Revelation 2:10; I Peter 2:20; Hebrews 12:10-11.

"Thou art good, and doest good; Teach me thy statutes."  God's Law to the Psalmist was more precious to follow after he recognized that affliction had been good for him.  It shows that he was grateful rather than bitter or resentful toward God for all he had to endure during his affliction.   He recognized that affliction brought him closer in his walk with God with total obedience.  In the midst of the affliction he still proclaimed, "Thou art good, and doest good."  In fact, he even wanted to have more instruction and knowledge of God's Teachings in the Law, saying "Teach me thy statutes."  He was aware that this was going to bring perhaps more affliction.  Yet, it was his deep longing.  This shows confidence in God's goodness.  This is powerful!

  • Delight in God's Law Despite Our Adversaries.  (verses 69-70)
 "69 The proud have forged a lie against me: With my whole heart will I keep thy precepts.  70 Their heart is as fat as grease; But I delight in thy law."

"The proud have forged a lie against me."  It is surprising to me that this humble and godly man has enemies who would falsely lie against him.  Yet, he expresses the reason behind all.  They were proud people who despised the humble, obedient, teachable children of God.  Does that sound familiar? 

"With my whole heart will I keep thy precepts."  The lies, slanders and scorning of the proud did not make him less faithful toward his God and His Word.  It did not distract him or discourage him.  Instead, it made him more obedient and honoring toward God's Law, pledging to obey Him with his whole heart.  The Psalmist found delight in God's Law.  Isn't it beautiful!

  • Appreciation and Gratitude for God's Goodness in The Midst of Our Seasons of Affliction.  (verses 71-72)
 "71 It is good for me that I have been afflicted; That I may learn thy statutes.  72 The law of thy mouth is better unto me Than thousands of gold and silver."

"It is good for me that I have been afflicted; That I may learn thy statutes."  The Psalmist repeats the thought of verse 67 in this section.  He is obviously trying to make a point of emphasis.  Affliction has done him a lot of good.  God´s wisdom and the instruction of His Word had accomplished this good in his life.  Blessed be the LORD for His discipline toward us His children!  Sadly, there are those whose afflictions make them worse.  Why?  Because they fail to turn to God for guidance and wisdom during their times of affliction.  The Psalmist models for us his love and dedication to the Word of God.  This in fact helped him to endure hardship and was worthwhile for him.  There is so much that we need to learn from this Psalmist.

"The law of thy mouth is better unto me Than thousands of gold and silver."  As a logical extension to the previous verse, the Psalmist understood that even difficulties and troubles could be good if it drew him nearer to the Word of God and if he were taught by it.  To him, this was of more value than his own comfort and all riches.  He learned, loved and appreciated God's Word as a result of a life that had known affliction.


J.  YODH:  Trust in the Creator and His Word.

The Yodh stanza represents the small Hebrew letter that Jesus referred as "jot" in Matthew 5:18:  " For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass away from the law, till all things be accomplished."

  • Surrendering to the Word of the Creator:  (verse 73)
 "73 Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: Give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments."

"Thy hands have made me."  He proclaims that God is our Creator and that we are obligated to God as our Creator, the One who has fashioned us by His hands.

"Fashioned me."  Here he is echoing Genesis 2:7.  Although man might profoundly reject his Creator, he still has an obligation to His Maker.  Why?  Because God is the One who gives us life.  Therefore we must revere Him as the One Who is supreme and greater than anyone else, because He is our Designer knowing what is best for our soul.  He is the One Who has every right to end our life since He is our beginning.  He acknowledges that many would forget all this and deny their Creator.

"Give me understanding."  The Psalmist is praying to his Creator for understanding and the knowledge of His Word.

"That I may learn thy commandments."  Man must understand and admit his need to learn God's Word (commandments) as well as to receive His Word as commands from a wise, loving and righteous Creator.

  • The Common Gladness of Those Who Fear God.  (verse 74)
 "74 They that fear thee shall see me and be glad, Because I have hoped in thy word."

 "They that fear thee shall see me and be glad."  The Psalmist wishes that all who fear God may see him as an example of obedience, encouragement, and trust in the Word of God.  

"Because I have hoped in thy word."   The Psalmist's life can surely give anyone encouragement and gladness to all who fear God because his hope and intentions were put upon the Word of God.

  • Comfort From God's Word in Our Times of Trouble and Affliction.  (verses 75-77)
"75 I know, O Jehovah, that thy judgments are righteous, And that in faithfulness thou hast afflicted me. 76 Let, I pray thee, thy lovingkindness be for my comfort, According to thy word unto thy servant.  77 Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live; For thy law is my delight."

"I know, O Jehovah, that thy judgments are righteous, And that in faithfulness thou hast afflicted me"   He knew that God's judgments are pure and righteous.  His love for God's Law had given him wise and righteous perspective even during his season of suffering.  Without a doubt he can proclaim the righteousness of God's judgments even in the midst of his affliction.  Another example of this is Job who came to know that all of God's judgments are righteous. Job even understood God's faithfulness in his affliction.  He could say in his affliction, "blessed be the name of the LORD," Job 1:21.  Other examples are found in I Samuel 3:18; 2 Samuel 16:11; 2 Kings 4:26.

"Let, I pray thee, thy lovingkindness be for my comfort, According to thy word unto thy servant."  The Psalmist prays that he might receive God's promises that were written in His Word.  He then asks according to His promises for His tender mercies in his time of affliction that he might be comforted.  He knew well that God's tender mercies came to him through God's Word or Law.  He also knew that if he stayed closer to God's Word (Law) allowing it to live in him, he would find His tender mercies.

  • A Contrast Between the Proud and Those Who Fear the LORD.  (verses 78-80)
 "78 Let the proud be put to shame; For they have overthrown me wrongfully: But I will meditate on thy precepts.  79 Let those that fear thee turn unto me; And they shall know thy testimonies.  80 Let my heart be perfect in thy statutes, That I be not put to shame."

"Let the proud be put to shame."  Since the proud had treated him wrongly with falsehood and ridicule, he wished that God would put them to shame.  And even though this prayer might not sound good, it is a prayer for their good so that they might seek Him, Psalm 83:16.

"But I will meditate on thy precepts."  The Psalmist loved to meditate on God's Word (Law).  How?  He would study the Law of God and not the law of retaliation.

"Let those that fear thee turn unto me."  Although he recognizes the presence of proud enemies, he did not believe that all were against him and God.  He admits there were some who feared God.  Therefore he could find friendship with them since they had much in common; they both had God's Word (Law),  those who knew and loved God's Testimonies.

"Let my heart be perfect in thy statutes."  The Psalmist recognizes his need for greater obedience to God´s Word.  He turns to God for knowledge and wisdom that he may be obedient, blameless in heart. 

"That I be not put to shame."  This is a reasonable desire.  He wants to live a righteous and holy life, a life that is blameless before the eyes of God.


K.  KAPH:  Fainting From Affliction, Revived by the Word of God.

  • Seeking Comfort in the Word of God.  (verses 81-82)
 "81 My soul fainteth for thy salvation; But I hope in thy word.  82 Mine eyes fail for thy word, While I say, When wilt thou comfort me?"

"My soul fainteth for thy salvation."  The Psalmist seems to be desperate.  Apparently, his heart is aching for God's Word because he has hope in His Word.  Paul expresses this same feeling in 2 Corinthians 4:8-9, 13.

"But I hope in thy word."  The Psalmist found hope and strength in God's Word. This same endurance of hope is found in I Thess. 1:3; I Thess. 5:8

"Mine eyes fail for thy word."  This is to show how diligent the Psalmist is in reading and studying God's Word.  He knew God's Word was richer than any earthly riches.

"When wilt thou comfort me?"  The Psalmist is in distress and is in need of a greater motivation to study deeply and diligently than just mere theology.  It is a fact that comfort can only come when one puts away all unbelief, complaining, sin and fulfill our obligations as Christians.

  • Valuing Weakness and Trusting in God's Word.  (verses 83-84)
 "83 For I am become like a wine-skin in the smoke; Yet do I not forget thy statutes. 84 How many are the days of thy servant? When wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me?"

"For I am become like a wine-skin in the smoke."  The Psalmist felt weak as a frail and weak wineskin that had turned dry and made black with smoke.  His spiritual life felt dry.  Don't we sometimes feel this way in the midst of our trials?  A wineskin in smoke was useless, shriveled and unappealing because of being blackened with soot. 

"Yet do I not forget thy statutes."  Despite his awareness of weakness, he was determined to not forget or forsake God's Statutes.  The Word of God was stronger than his weakness.  No trial, trouble, adversity.... would pull him away from his love of the TRUTH.

"How many are the days of thy servant? When wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me?"  The awareness of his weakness led him to despair into thinking that God was not going to execute judgment against those who persecuted him.  Something to notice in this verse is that the Psalmist does not mention the Word (Law) of God.  It makes us think that perhaps his despair had made him lose his focus on God's Word.

  • A Cry for Help When Attacked and Persecuted.  (verses 85-86)
"85 The proud have digged pits for me, Who are not according to thy law.  86 All thy commandments are faithful: They persecute me wrongfully; help thou me."

"The proud have digged pits for me, Who are not according to thy law."  The snares that his enemies had set were a direct attack on the Law of God.  Exodus 21:33-34 gives us an example of this principle.  Although his enemies had almost destroyed him, his faith remained unshakable. 

"All thy commandments are faithful: They persecute me wrongfully, help thou me."  The Psalmist found refuge and faithfulness in God's commandments that were an apparent contrast to the persecution of his enemies.  Instead, he prays the logical:  Help me!

  • Revived by God Unto Obedience.  (verses 87-88)
 "87 They had almost consumed me upon earth; But I forsook not thy precepts.  88 Quicken me after thy lovingkindness; So shall I observe the testimony of thy mouth."

"They had almost consumed me upon earth; But I forsook not thy precepts."  The Psalmist emphasizes over and over the fact that he is not going to forsake God's Word.  He is determined to adhere to God's Word in good and bad times.  This is remarkable to me!  There are so many things that can provoke us to forsake God's Word:  Sin, arrogance, persecution, indifference and coldness of heart, worldly distractions, love of material riches and busyness.  The Psalmist was almost dead and destroyed but would not forsake God's Precepts (Word).

"Quicken me after thy lovingkindness." The Psalmist is looking for a new life, revival.  Although he loved the Word of God so deeply and freely spoke of his love, yet he recognizes that his trust was in the goodness and mercy of God, not in his love for God's Word.  

"So shall I observe the testimony of thy mouth."  Here he understands well the purpose of a revived spirit within himself.  It was for a more faithful, obedient walk with God.   He also knew that the Word (Testimony) of God comes from the mouth of God.  We see this in the inspired writing that communicates  words from His mouth.  Words that are infallible, and not just ideas. 


L.  LAMEDH:  Saved by the Word Settled in Heaven.

  • A Faithful God and His Settled Word.  (verses 89-91)
 "89 For ever, O Jehovah, Thy word is settled in heaven.  90 Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: Thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.  91 They abide this day according to thine ordinances; For all things are thy servants."

"For ever, O Jehovah, Thy word is settled in heaven."  The Psalmist meditated on the unchanging nature of God's Word.  Because God's Word is settled in heaven, and it will not change on earth.  In contrast with man's teachings that often change and never have time to be settled.  But the Word of God remains forever the same.  The Word of God is composed of the very words of God and not man.  We believe this because the Word of God confirms this in 2 Timothy 3:16.  The Words that the inspired men wrote were breathed by God.  Jesus confirms this also in Matthew 5:8. Therefore, the Word of God is settled in heaven.

"Thy faithfulness is unto all generations."  The Psalmist believed that the settled Word of God was a proof of His faithfulness which extends across all generations.  We see this when we contemplate how God has preserved His Word throughout all generations.  The Bible not only survives, but it also flourishes.

"Thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.  They abide this day according to thine ordinances."  The spoken Word of God is certainly what created the earth and causes it to abide, Genesis 1.  The earth and all creation are sustained and endure according to the Word of God.  Isaiah 40:8 and Matthew 24:35 confirm all this.

"For all things are thy servants."  The Psalmist understands the created order that all creation serves God and His purpose.  The earth, which He established and which abides, obeys His Word.

  • The Sustaining Power of God's Word (Law).  (verses 92-93)
 "92 Unless thy law had been my delight, I should then have perished in mine affliction.  93 I will never forget thy precepts; For with them thou hast quickened me."

"Unless thy law had been my delight."  It is evident that the Psalmist loved and rejoiced in God's Law(Word).  Reading and meditating on God's Law had not become a burdensome task, but a delight. 

"I should then have perished in mine affliction."  The Psalmist understood well that without a close relationship with God and His Law(Word), he would have not been comforted or encouraged, in his time of affliction.  I can relate to this well!  It is important to understand that delight in His Word does not come through just Bible knowledge but rather in our relationship with God and His Law (Word).  It is what gives us strength and spiritual sustenance.

"I will never forget thy precepts; For with them thou hast quickened (revived) me."  The Psalmist recalls that God’s Word (Precepts) is what gives him a life of sustenance and character.  It was this life that fortified him in his time of affliction.  God's Word (Precepts) is alive and gives us sustaining life.

  • Protection, Shelter in Seeking God's Word (Precepts).  (verses 94-95)
 "94 I am thine, save me; For I have sought thy precepts.  95 The wicked have waited for me, to destroy me; But I will consider thy testimonies." 

"I am thine, save me."  This short phrase portrays a delightful and sublime relationship between him and His God, springing from the Word of God.  How can God save him through the Word?  First, he recognizes God as his God because we are His children, His creation.  Salvation is in seeking His Precepts (Law) and surrendering to His will; thus making us His election, redemption and acceptance.  God hears and answers the prayers of those who seek Him; and we acknowledge that God will save us in the end because we have sought and kept His Precepts, Word.

"For I have sought thy precepts."  A close relationship is built upon the Word (Precepts) of God.  It is not a relationship built upon feelings or personal experiences but upon the firm cornerstone of God's Word.

"The wicked have waited for me, to destroy me; But I will consider thy testimonies."  His enemies do evil against him.  They seek to destroy him, but he will not be anxious or alarmed.  He would rather find shelter, protection in God's Word (Testimonies). 

  • The Perfection of God's Word (Commandments, Law).   (verse 96)
 "96 I have seen an end of all perfection; But thy commandment is exceeding broad."

"I have seen an end of all perfection."  The Psalmist examines those excellent things he has seen in his life; perhaps those of great beauty; the intricate, detailed things of God's creation, His love, and care.  Yet, when he contemplates all these wonderful things they all have their limits, and they come to an end.  But the Word (Commandments) of God has no end or boundaries.  It remains forever.

"But thy commandment is exceeding broad."   Despite all the extraordinary and delightful things he had seen, there was something of great value, the Commandments of God, His revealed Word to us.  There are no boundaries or end to His Law.  Why?  Because His Word is before creation.  It is the sustainer of creation.  It will endure forever, beyond all creation.


M.  MEM:  Loving the Sweetness of God's Law (Word)

  •  The Love of God's Word Demonstrated Through Meditation.  (verse 97)
 "97 Oh how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day." 

"Oh how love I thy law!"  Twice throughout this Psalm, the Psalmist has declared his love for God's Word (Law) (Psalm 119:47-48).  Yet in this text, the Psalmist is expressing an intense, fervent devotion to God's Word. He is proclaiming that he loves God's Word (Law) more than anything else in this life.  God's Word surpasses all things excellent. His is expressing his adoration of the Word of God.   It is precious to him because it makes him superior in wisdom, intelligence, and judgment toward his enemies, his teachers and the aged. He is also praising and speaking highly to others about God's Law, His Word.  The one who loves the Word of God would not just understand it but live it in total obedience.  It is his food, medicine, comfort and his path of light.  It is sustaining life.  He cannot live without His Law.  Oh, how I love this passage!

"It is my meditation all the day." The Psalmist ponders or considers God's Law all day long because he loves His Word.  It is as natural for him as breathing air.

  • God's Word (Commandments) Provides us With Great Wisdom.  (verses 98-100)
 "98 Thy commandments make me wiser than mine enemies; For they are ever with me.  99 I have more understanding than all my teachers; For thy testimonies are my meditation.  100 I understand more than the aged, Because I have kept thy precepts."
"Thy commandments make me wiser than mine enemies."  The Psalmist has many enemies.  Some are proud and evil.  Yet, he is confident that God's Word (Commandments) has given him greater wisdom toward his teachers, his enemies and the aged one.  How?  Because of his diligent and earnest dedication to his study and meditation on God's Word. It shows us that we can gain much wisdom and understanding from God's Word from our own personal study and meditation, even more than from our teachers.  Teachers are useful but not always necessary.  It shows us that understanding is of much greater value than having teachers.  Jesus teaches that if the blind leads the blind, they both shall fall into the ditch.  The Lord requires us to try the spirits because there are many false teachers in the world.  Consider how the faithful men of God were often men of little education and yet they had great understanding and were effective in teaching God's Word.

"I understand more than the aged, Because I have kept thy precepts."  God's Word had given him more education than his elders.  He understands more than the aged because he has kept God's Precepts even though they seem to have more experience than he.  He understood that our rule of faith, doctrine and living is the Word, the Bible, itself, not the understanding or interpretation of great men in history.  He acknowledges and respects the knowledge and wisdom of the ancients, but he also declares that we are not to be slaves to their counsel; only God's Word is worthy of slavish devotion.

  • The Word of God Keeps us From All Evil.  (verses 101-102)
 "101 I have refrained my feet from every evil way, That I might observe thy word.  102 I have not turned aside from thine ordinances; For thou hast taught me."

"I have refrained my feet from every evil way, That I might observe thy word."  The Psalmist recognized the importance of restraining one from evil.  This would help him understand God's Word (Ordinances, Judgments) better.

"I have not turned aside from thine ordinances."  That personal connection he had with God through His Word helped him to walk faithfully. 

"For thou hast taught me."  God is the guarantor of all Biblical Truth.

  • The Sweet Understanding of God's Word.  (verses 103-14)
 "103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! Yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!  104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: Therefore I hate every false way."

"How sweet are thy words unto my taste!"  The Psalmist is expressing how God's Words felt to him:  pleasant, smooth and sweet, even sweeter than honey!  When one spends time in God's Word, he finds a sweet acquaintance and thanksgiving.   Studying and meditating on God's Word provided him enormous delight and satisfaction.  God's Words are sweet to us when we love His whole Truth, His Doctrines, His Precepts. 

"Through thy precepts I get understanding: Therefore I hate every false way."  The Word of God (Precepts) gave him discernment and courage.  It made him able to discern wisdom and hate every false way.  And although we live in a world of darkness, bitterness, and ugliness, we can still have our sweet moments and see the beauty of God through His Word that aids us in hating all such evil and loving all righteousness.


N.  NUN:  The Unceasing Trust in Gods' Word.

  • The Illuminating Enlightenment, Guidance of God's Word.  (verse 105)
"105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, And light unto my path." 

"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet."  The Psalmist understood that the Word of God was constant enlightenment, guidance which he trusted forever.  He also acknowledged that in order to walk with God, he needed the guidance of His Word.  Because God's Law was a lamp to his feet, it helped him walk the Way God wanted him to walk.  So how are Christians to walk?   
  1. Worthy, Eph. 4:1.
  2. Uprightly, Isaiah 57:2.
  3. In the light, I John 1:7.
  4. Humbly, Micah 6:8.   
Notice that none of these are possible without the enlightenment or guidance of God's Word in our walk.

"And light unto my path."  The Word of God guided his steps and showed him the path of righteousness.  A path he knew he needed to remain on.  The Word of God is light and gives light.  The Word of God can be clearly understood but one must avoid human opinions when studying it and teaching it for it to have its most beneficial effect on us and those who hear us.

  • Trusting in the Life-giving Power of God's Word.  (verses 106-108)
 "106 I have sworn, and have confirmed it, That I will observe thy righteous ordinances.  107 I am afflicted very much: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according unto thy word.  108 Accept, I beseech thee, the freewill-offerings of my mouth, O Jehovah, And teach me thine ordinances."

"I have sworn, and have confirmed it, That I will observe thy righteous ordinances (Judgments)."  The Psalmist was indeed determined to keep and obey God's righteous Judgments, laws, and requirements. His Word dictated his life. 

"I am afflicted very much: Quicken me, O Jehovah, according unto thy word."  His determination to obey God's Law came from a season of affliction rather than comfort and ease.  Despite his many difficulties, pains and sufferings, he fixed his eyes on the Word of God.  He looked to His Word for revival and sought to live it according to His Word.

"Accept, I beseech thee, the freewill-offerings of my mouth, O Jehovah."  The Psalmist presented these words as a sacrifice brought to the altar of God.  They were his freewill offerings of love and devotion to His Word.  They were also sacrifices of prayer and praises, Psalm 50:14; Hosea 14:2.

"And teach me thine ordinances."  The Psalmist is acknowledging with humility his need for God's instruction, His Judgments. 

  • Trusting in God's Word Despite Snares and Dangers(verses 109-110)
 "109 My soul is continually in my hand; Yet do I not forget thy law.  110 The wicked have laid a snare for me; Yet have I not gone astray from thy precepts."

"My soul is continually in my hand; Yet do I not forget thy law. "  Although the Psalmist was in constant danger, his devotion and connection to God's Word remained firm and unshakable. 

"The wicked have laid a snare for me; Yet have I not gone astray from thy precepts."  Even though his enemies endangered his life with their wickedness, he would not forsake the Precepts of God.  I think he is not just speaking of physical dangers but of spiritual dangers as well.  Dangers of falling into sin.

  • A Long-Lasting Loyalty to God and His Word.  (verses 111-112)
"111 Thy testimonies have I taken as a heritage for ever; For they are the rejoicing of my heart.  112 I have inclined my heart to perform thy statutes For ever, even unto the end."

"Thy testimonies have I taken as a heritage for ever; For they are the rejoicing of my heart."  The Psalmist rejoiced in God's Testimonies (Word, Law) with a genuinely heartfelt joy.  Thus God's Law became his heritage forever. 

"I have inclined my heart to perform thy statutes For ever, even unto the end."  Again, the Psalmist would not forsake God's Statues, Word.  He would not stop studying, learning, meditating and mainly obeying God's Word to the end.


O.  SAMEKH:  Hold Up, Supported by God's Word.

  • Protection, Shelter Found in God's Word.  (verses 113-114).
"113 I hate them that are of a double mind; But thy law do I love.  114 Thou art my hiding-place and my shield: I hope in thy word."

"I hate them that are of a double mind; But thy law do I love."  The Psalmist understood the frustration of the doubled minded man.  He is unpredictable and uncommitted in his lie.  And yet, the Law of God is sure and certain.  The double minded wants both God and the world.  He wants God but he wants to live in sin also.  The Psalmist rejects the mindset of the double minded man because he wants God´s Word to sustain him and uphold him when he is tempted to fall into sin.  "But thy law I love."  When one loves the Law of God it becomes the law of love toward His Word.  One does not waver or depart from God's Word.  He holds on to His Testimonies forever.

"Thou art my hiding-place and my shield: I hope in thy word."  The God whom the Psalmist came to know and love through the Word, became his shelter in troubled times.  His hope was not just in knowledge but in a genuine relationship with God Himself (my hiding place and my shield) who protected him.  Our Lord Jesus is our safe hiding place.  When one loves the Truth the Lord becomes his Shield and Protector against anything that would lead us astray. 

  • A Word to the Wicked.  (verse 115)
 "115 Depart from me, ye evil-doers, That I may keep the commandments of my God."

"Depart from me, ye evil-doers." Here the Psalmist is addressing the evil doers that caused him so much trouble.  He realized he needed to put distance between himself and the evil doers.  It means he was cautious about choosing his friends.

"That I may keep the commandments of my God."  This is the reason for the Psalmist wanting that distance mentioned previously.  He was committed to keeping and obeying God's Commandments.  He continually relied on God's Word.

  • Upheld and Saved by the Word of God.  (verses 116-17)
 "116 Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live; And let me not be ashamed of my hope.  117 Hold thou me up, and I shall be safe, And shall have respect unto thy statutes continually."

"Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live."  The Psalmist knows that without God holding him up, he could not stand up against his enemies; without God's steadfast sustenance he could not live either physically or spiritually.  The idea of support (uphold me) would only occur according to God's Word.  It would be unchanging precisely because it finds its origin in God's Word.

"And let me not be ashamed of my hope."  The Psalmist's love, hope, and faith are devoted to God and His Word. (Psalm 110:43; 49, 74, 81, 114).  God will vindicate us and protect us when we set our hope in Him.

 "Hold thou me up, and I shall be safe, And shall have respect unto thy statutes continually."  He is requesting to be supported and upheld by the strength that comes from God and His Word.  It will help him use that strength to obey His Statutes, Word.

  • The Righteous Judgments of God.  (verses 118-120)
 "118 Thou hast set at nought all them that err from thy statutes; For their deceit is falsehood.  119 Thou puttest away all the wicked of the earth like dross: Therefore I love thy testimonies.  120 My flesh trembleth for fear of thee; And I am afraid of thy judgments."

"Thou hast set at nought all them that err from thy statutes." The Psalmist speaks of the righteousness of God's Judgments.  He uses the word statutes as His standard for Judgment.  God rejects those who stray from His Word and the laws revealed therein.  God in His righteousness will purify the earth from the lawlessness of the wicked.  Isaiah 1:22; Ezekiel 22:18-19; Jeremiah 6:28-30.

"Therefore I love thy testimonies."  The Psalmist praises God for all His righteous Judgments.  He also praises God for His Testimonies as a measure of righteousness.

"My flesh trembleth for fear of thee; And I am afraid of thy judgments."  As the Psalmist reflects on the righteousness of God's Judgments, he examines his own life and acknowledges that his life has not been entirely righteous.  His awareness of fear and trembling made him rush to God for his atoning, covering sacrifice.  The Psalmist did not rejoice in the judgment of the wicked but rather trembled in holy fear himself. 


P.  AYIN:  The Servant Seeks After The Word of God.

  • A Prayer of God's Protection Against the Proud.  (verses 121-122)
 "121 I have done justice and righteousness: Leave me not to mine oppressors.  122 Be surety for thy servant for good: Let not the proud oppress me."

"I have done justice and righteousness:  Leave me not to mine oppressors."  The Psalmist knew he was devoted to living a godly, holy and righteous life before God, in contrast to the life of his oppressors.

"Be surety for thy servant for good."  The Psalmist is praying to God to defend and stand up for him.  It was through God's defense that he was able to avoid the oppression of the proud.  The Psalmist cries out to God as Job did.  Job 17:3.  He also prayed that GOD would be to him what Jesus is to us, a surety of the covenant, Hebrew 7:22. One thing to notice is that verse 122 does not mention the Word of God.


"Let not the proud oppress me."  The Psalmist is expressing his deep anguish as a result of the oppression he had endured from wicked men.  He hopes that God will not leave him in the oppressive hands of his arbitrary enemies.

  •  God's Servant Seeks Salvation in His Statutes.  (verses 123-125)
 "123 Mine eyes fail for thy salvation, And for thy righteous word.  124 Deal with thy servant according unto thy lovingkindness, And teach me thy statutes.  125 I am thy servant; give me understanding, That I may know thy testimonies."

"Mine eyes fail for thy salvation, And for thy righteous word."  This points out how devoted the Psalmist was to the Word of God and how much he valued the salvation he found from the Word.  The Psalmist shows how patiently he was to wait for God's salvation. 
"Deal with thy servant according unto thy lovingkindness, And teach me thy statutes."  He is acknowledging how God teaches His children.  Although God has no obligation to teach us, He does so anyway out of His great mercy toward us.  But as His children we have a duty to Him, the Master.  An obligation to learn His Law, Word, and obey it.

"I am thy servant; give me understanding, That I may know thy testimonies."  The Psalmist yearns for understanding that he may know the Testimonies of God better.  He knew that with God's help he could understand His Word better.  Understanding His Word was of significant importance to him.  Why?  Because that same Word would lead him into deeper understanding and wisdom of God's Word so he could walk in righteousness.

  • A Plea For God to Act, Work.  (verse 126)
 "126 It is time for Jehovah to work; For they have made void thy law." 


"It is time for Jehovah to work."  Those who walk in God's laws understand the urgent need of the Psalmist.  His need for God to do what is right is so great that he dares to make this request to God.  We are often so ignorant of God's Ways and timing that we seem to be wrong on this matter.  We become anxious demanding God to act right away.

"For they have made void thy law."  The Psalmist is pointing out those who ignore the Word and Law of God.  And instead of pleading about his desperate condition, he calls on God since His Law is being broken.  His Law is made void by those who deny its authority and their obligation to it.

  • The Word of God is Precious and Right.  (verses 127-128)
 "127 Therefore I love thy commandments Above gold, yea, above fine gold.  128 Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; And I hate every false way."


"Therefore I love thy commandments Above gold, yea, above fine gold."  Even though others regarded the Word of God as void and despised, the Psalmist resolved to love and keep His Commandments instead.  To him the Word, Law, was of more value than gold.  When he considered how much the Word was voided and despised, he decided to love it even more. 

"Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right."  He regarded God's Precepts to be right with great confidence.  He proclaimed the infallibility of God's Word.  Because the Law, Word of God is perfect concerning all matters.   The Word is perfect in matters of history, poetry, prophecy, instruction, right and wrong. 

"And I hate every false way."  He abhorred every false way since he loved the Word of God so intensely.  He loved the Truth , therefore he hated falsehood.  This is what Jesus said in Matthew 6:24 about serving two masters.  It is impossible to love the path of righteousness without hating the wrong one, the unrighteous one. 


We have arrived about two-thirds of the way in our stroll through the meditations of Psalm 119.  I hope that you are enjoying these beautiful thoughts as much as I am.  Lord willing I would post the last part of this study in the next few days.

Luci