Lucia's Blog: WE MUST NEVER TAKE THE WORD OF GOD FOR GRANTED
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Monday, January 27, 2020

WE MUST NEVER TAKE THE WORD OF GOD FOR GRANTED

"The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. 8 The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. 9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether. 10 They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. 11 Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; In keeping them there is great reward." 
Psalm 19:7-11


How does God persuade a fleshly, sin enslaved people to look up and see the glory of righteousness?   Psalm 19 displays the glory of God's Laws, which lead us into righteous living.  Faithfulness to God's Word is the true excellence of all virtues.  God's Word must fill our thoughts day and night.  The Word of God tastes sweet like honey as we study it.  The holy words of God must not be taken for granted. God has provided everything that we need. Jesus came as the ultimate expression of God's Word so that now we are without excuse.  In today's world, there is very little respect, honor, or fear of God.  People take God's Word for granted. They use His name in a derogatory, dirty, and despicable way without even thinking.  They don't know who God is, and so they reject Him.  Do they even care who God is?  Do they know how to know Him?  How to respond to His calling?  Psalm 19 has the answers to these questions.  Let us marvel at His majestic Word and tremble in His presence.


I.   GOD'S EXCELLENT REVELATION THROUGH HIS WORD, HIS LAW:
  • God Reveals Himself Through His Word (His Law):  (Psalm 19:7-11)

In Psalm 19:7-11, we are reassured that the Word of God is a great blessing when we study and understand it. The Word here is called:

  1. Law
  2. Testimony
  3. Precepts
  4. Commandment
  5. Fear
  6. Judgments

The Word of God, His Law, is described by six names, characteristics, and actions. It is a rule and God's Testimony for the Truth.  His Law is man's prescription of duty. It causes us to fear our God and reverence His righteous Judgments (judicial choices).  It is distinct, perfect, reliable, right, pure, holy, and true.  It revives the sinner, giving him the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  It teaches God's principles of righteousness and holiness.  Those who embrace it will be rewarded greatly.  God's Word is God's wonderful gift to all humanity because of its nature. Indeed, God's power is described in His Word and can revive our souls. His instruction is perfect, complete, and lacks nothing.

Let's examine each of these terms carefully:
    • "The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul."  (Psalm 19:7a)  

Here we are told that God's Law, the Word, is perfect.  There's no room for mistakes or error, only perfection!  It is perfectly designed for us.  It perfectly equips us with all that we need.  God gives us His perfect Word to help and guide us in a world of darkness and imperfection.   He pours out His Word on us with a fragrant aroma to help us live righteously.  But, we have been warned not to add or take away from it.
"Whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it"  (Deuteronomy 12:32).  

The Word of God is as satisfying and refreshing as a glass of cold water on a hot day....just what we need!  The beauty of God's Law is that it draws us back to Him. The Word is the living water that we keep running to when we thirst for righteousness.  It converts our souls and brings salvation.  It's the power to restore our souls back to Him by showing us our sin and our need for Him and His Word.  The Word of God, His Law, can bring back to life the soul that is dead because of sin.  The Word of God can revive us, but we must let it work in us.  For "man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of God."
    • "The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple."  (Psalm 19:7b)  

This refers to the whole Bible as God's sacred Testimony.  It is His Testimony of Who He is to us. Yes, the Word is sure, absolute, and confirmed.  It is trustworthy, making wise the simple.  The Word of God is easy to read, and we can trust the words God has written for us.  The instructions given in His Word are easy to follow.  When we follow them, we find salvation, contentment, joy, and, most importantly, eternal life.  Obedience to God's Word shows wisdom.  He who refuses to heed God's Word shows himself to be a fool.  In I Corinthians 1:19-21, Paul shows how God used the "foolishness" of the Gospel to destroy the wisdom of the wise.  God's Word can never be shaken. We can lean on it with confidence.  The Word makes us wise to salvation.  Even the simple can understand what is written in it!
"They read from the book,  from the law of God, translating to give the sense so that they understood the reading" (Nehemiah 8:8).

The people of Israel asked Ezra to bring the Book of the Law of Moses, which the LORD had given to them.
"And they read from it before the gathering from early morning until midday, in the presence of men and women, those who could understand; and all the people were attentive to the book of the law" (Nehemiah 8:3).
"And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people for he was standing above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up" (Nehemiah 8:5).

It was such an encouraging and emotional moment when they revered the Word of God.  They knew God's Word is sure, making wise the simple.  What an encouragement!

God's Word is Law to be defended and to be revered.  It is His Testimony to His faithfulness to those who choose to follow Him.  Let us never take His Word carelessly!  God's Word as Law, is perfect, and we can never go wrong.  As Testimony, we know it is all Truth, complete and sure.  Our God is so faithful that He makes a way for those who have trouble understanding it.  He shows them and teaches them what is right.
    • "The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart."  (Psalm 19:8a)  

Here the word Precepts is defined as law, decree, or rule.  It tells us that the Bible is God's Law, decreed by Him, and made to rule over all.  It is His commandment for all those who profess to be Christians. The word Precept is defined here as a rule intended to regulate behavior or thought. God's Word dictates to us, His children.  God's Law is straight and perfect.  His laws are not crooked. God's statements are ordained for obedience, that one might walk the straight path and be joyful. God's straight paths, His Precepts, bring joy as we obey them. Obeying God's straight Precepts maximizes our joy in life. When we follow God's ways, they will bring gladness to our hearts.  God's Precepts are dictated to us so that we may do what is right, straightforward, suitable, and correct. The word "dictate" means to tell with authority. Therefore, we must believe and obey God's Word.
    • "The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes." (Psalm 19:8b

God's Word is pure and gives off light.  Some translations say, "The commandment of the Lord is radiant" to show the purity of His Word.  The purity of His Law is enlightening to us (2 Timothy 3:15; Psalm 119:105).  His Word brings discernment.  It removes the darkness in us, leading us on the path of Light.  It is a lamp to our feet as we walk in the Light that we might find the perfect and righteous direction.   God's commandments are pure, meaning free from moral defilement, genuine, true, without spot, and holy.  The Word of God is purifying to all who read, study, and embrace it.
 "And for this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received from us the Word of God's message, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the Word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe"  (I Thessalonians 2:13). 
God's Word enlightens us and opens our eyes to an understanding of sin.  It teaches us to fear, honor, and glorify Him.
"Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures"  (Luke 24:45).
    • "The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever."  (Psalm 19:9a)   

The word fear refers to the reverence and respect of our LORD.  It is a respect and reverence that grows out of a healthy fear of the great power of God and His righteous indignation against all sin and disrespect that men show toward their Creator and Lord. It is awe-filled reverence to our God.  It is used in Nehemiah 1:11 as "servants who delight to fear Thy name."  In other words, we, His children, must delight in honoring Him in all things.  In Job 28:28, Job refers to the fear of God as wisdom.  To revere God is wise.  So my question is, "Why can we not be in awe of His Word?" "Why should we not seek and make it our ambition to read, study, understand, and obey all that He has to say about His Word?"  The fear of the LORD is clean, meaning in a moral and ethical sense, it is clean by teaching us what is right and wrong.  Psalm 119:9 states that the Word of God cleanses us and makes us pure,  "How can a young man keep his way pure?  By keeping it according to Thy Word."  Those things that are corrupt decay and pass away.  Purity endures forever.

God's Word endures forever, and it never perishes because it is pure, without any blemish, error, or flaw.  It is in harmony with God's character, thus enduring forever.  It remains unchanged. Likewise, God is steadfast and unchangeable!  The Word of God cleanses us from the filth of sin.  It cleans our character, lives, mouths, personality, bad habits, and actions.  It regenerates men into righteousness, in the likeness of God, our Creator.  In knowing and understanding this, we are more than confident that God will sustain us.  The Bible, the Word of God, His Law is amazing!  Let's never take for granted His Word!  Let's revere and embrace it in our hearts.  The fear of the LORD is reverential obedience and hatred of evil, or sin (Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:1-5; 3:7).  The fear of God was a trademark that characterized the first-century church (Acts 9:31).  The fear of the LORD is what we need today to please God!
    • "The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether." (Psalm 19:9b

The word Judgments here is referring to God's ordinances.  His rules and commandments.
"Thou has ordained Thy precepts, that we should keep them diligently.  Oh that my ways maybe established to keep Thy statutes!"  (Psalm 119:4-5

 We can confidently rely on the Word of God for direction and counsel, for it is righteous altogether.  Every word God speaks is righteous, and so are God's actions.  They are for our benefit. God has our best interests in mind.  We can rest assured that we can depend on Him and His Word completely.  Those who walk in His Law are not defiled but instead are blessed.  His Word is "true and righteous altogether."  His Truth is perfect, according to the LORD's righteousness.
    • "They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold."  (Psalm 19:10a)  

The phrase "more desirable" is saying we are to covet and take full pleasure in His Word.  God's Word must be desired more than anything else in life... even much fine gold!   Consider, gold is one of the most sought after precious metals.  It doesn't compare to the value of God's Word, His Law.  It doesn't even come close to the value of God's righteous commandments and statutes. The value of God's Law to transform and regenerate us is immeasurable, for it revives our souls and makes us wise (the simple).  It gladdens the heart as it enlightens our eyes.  How impressive is God's Law! God's Law is more valuable than all the money and possessions this world has to offer us.  When we treat the Word of God, His Law as more valuable and more precious than gold, we will then learn to be more diligent in studying it. 
    • "Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb."  (Psalm 19:10b).  

God's Word is also sweeter than honey dripping from the honeycomb.  Do you like honey?  I do!  I eat it and love cooking with it!  Oh, what a pleasant taste it is to our palate!  It is full of sweetness and pleasure to the senses.  Did you know that the Bible, the Word of God, has the same effect on us by causing pleasure to our souls?
"How sweet are Thy words to my taste!  Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!"  (Psalm 119:103)  

But the big difference is that honey has a temporary sweetness, and the Word of God is everlasting to everlasting to those who believe and obey it.  It is satisfying to the hungry and malnourished soul. A side effect of honey, when consumed in excess, is that it works against our bodies, causing damage to our teeth and our vital organs.  But no matter how much we consume of the Truths of God, it is never enough!  Actually, the more, the better for our souls. God's Word can fulfill and enrich us like nothing else in this world.  It fills the emptiness in our hearts that many people try to fill with earthly things.  Yet the only thing that can satisfy our spirit and soul is God and His Word.  God's Words are the sweetest blessing in our life!
    • "Moreover, by them Thy servant is warned."   (Psalm 19:11a)

 Let us never forget that the Word of God is a warning to us, a warning to obey by doing exactly what is expected of us, a warning not to put it aside.  A warning of the terrible consequences if we do not abide in it.  God does not leave us ignorant of the dire consequences of rejecting and disobeying His Word.  God has warned us greatly about violating His righteous laws. We must never take God's Word for granted!  It is a terrible thing to neglect God's Word!  It is the lifeline of our soul and life.
"Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me" (Ezekiel 3:17).   
God's revelation is demonstrated when we receive the warnings of God's Word.
    • "In keeping them there is great reward."  (Psalm 19:11b)   

David highlights for us God's great reward when we keep His Words.  Not only will we be rewarded on that great Day of Judgment, but even today, there are great rewards in our lives.  When we obey God's laws, the rules He has given for our lives, we are walking the path of righteousness, and we will reap the fruits of righteousness.  Because we keep God's laws and commands, our very lives help us to judge righteously (make righteous choices) in our lives with hope, contentment, peace, and calmness of heart.  Others cannot enjoy these blessings because of sin and evil in their lives. They are slaves to their desires and lusts, making it difficult to be free from the slavery of sin.  They refuse to obey God's commands, so they rob themselves of the joy that can only be found when we obey God's commands. There is great reward in keeping God's Word exceedingly beyond what we can imagine.  We learn full obedience through God's Word.  His Word gives us peace, wisdom, comfort, joy, relief, and great satisfaction.  The Word gives us grace and redemption through Jesus Christ.  His revelation is shown in our willingness to obey His Word and receive His rewards.

May we cultivate a heart that is completely devoted to God and His Word.  May we hear and heed the words of Christ on how to be saved from our sins, deny our self daily, serve and love others, and endure to the end.  May we have a desire for God's Word and receive the warnings of His Word.


Luci

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