O how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day.
Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies,
For they are ever mine.
I have more insight than all my teachers,
For Your testimonies are my meditation.
I understand more than the aged,
Because I have observed Your precepts.
I have restrained my feet from every evil way,
That I may keep Your word.
I have not turned aside from Your ordinances,
For You Yourself have taught me.
How sweet are Your words to my taste!
Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
From Your precepts I get understanding;
Therefore I hate every false way.
I’m so thankful for the opportunity to write to you today! My prayer is that my following thoughts and study edify and encourage you! This section of Psalms contains seven rich verses and I’m providing a breakdown of my personal insights verse by verse. Open your Bible to the passages and keep your finger following along!
By David’s example in Psalm 119:97, I’ve been practicing meditation lately. I can easily get overwhelmed inside my own head and an easy tool I’ve been practicing lately is setting a 10-minute timer on my phone, sitting down, and making a quiet place to purposefully repeat in my mind verses or pieces of verses, filling my doubt and anxiety in mentally by repetition. A few days ago, my phrase was, “Sanctify them in truth, YOUR WORD IS TRUTH.” When life surrounded me with lies and doubts, I filled it instead with God’s word! 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 says: “The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.”
The Psalmist’s love of God’s law is being proclaimed from joy of salvation! They have a love of the truth in God’s laws and are able to be saved because of it What is being said from the opposite side of those condemned in Thessalonians, is that a love of the truth was necessary and pivotal in being able to be saved! Let us fully love the truth!
Verse 97 seems to me to be setting a claim with the three following verses explaining the benefits. “Because I love your law and it is my meditation constantly, I have the three following advantages: I am able to be wiser than my enemies, I have as much as and the possibility of more understanding than my teachers, and I have or am able to have the understanding of those who have lived longer than I.” I am going to go straight to the point that I am excited about today! There is no greater wisdom offered on earth than what we have fully available to us right now. Let that sink in! We not only have answers, we have every answer needed! (2 Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:3) If we as Christians have at our disposal the guide for pure wisdom, insight, earthly contentment, and eternal salvation, can we really have more to desire than that? God has fully provided for His people!
Do not be lacking in encouragement and be stuck in the thick mud of ignorance and discouragement by not tapping into the perfect resource of God’s Word! If our faith or spiritual state is lacking, do we dare claim that God’s Word and wisdom do not offer the antidote? Let’s be honest, God’s word is not inefficient to allow for that. When God’s precepts are at the forefront of our thinking and processing of life, it constantly provides practical guidance and spiritual understanding. It’s like walking through life with a map (ah-hem, or your phone with its opened app) instead of guessing your way to your destination that inevitably brings about unnecessary (and potentially dangerous) detours.
In Ephesians 4 the following is said:
And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming;
Practically and simply, we are given leadership to be able to be equipped through God’s word. By being equipped, we are able to build up the body, attain unity of the faith and knowledge, and be mature, so we aren’t tossed about any more by Satan and his schemes in whatever from they take. Are we doing this? You, me, here and now. Do we take the teaching of the leadership with open arms? Do we train ourselves by God’s word? Are we moving toward what we could be capable of being? Don’t be deceived and swept away because of lack of understanding that God provides to us.
Hebrews 5:12-14 says:
For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant.But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.
Here we are given the example of people who were able but could not stand and deliver! Notice that last part in verse 14, that by CONSTANT PRACTICE their powers of discernment were trained to distinguish good from evil. Are we training ourselves in wisdom by God’s word? Are we able to rejoice like the Psalmist from the benefits of Biblical insight? We will never be able to have maturity without the teaching and training.
According to Psalm 119:101-103, to abide by God’s word we have to abstain from every evil way. This is expounded upon in 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22. God has taught us His guidelines, they are not turned aside from. When we love God’s word, our taste for it increases. Isn’t it insightful that it is compared to food in this way? Don’t we crave sweeter things more, especially the more we have them? God’s truths and love only shine brighter the more tha our faith grows! His mercy only becomes more important and treasured as His truths show themselves to be right.
Psalm 119:104 is the perfect conclusion to this section. As when we started with Psalm 119:97, we see the same example in our conclusion. As a Christian, I see God’s truth. I know it. I see others around me with no answers or answers that lead them to pain and I see that in contrast to what I have! I see that I have the truth and I have no desire for any other way because it is false. John 10:10 says, “…I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” It is commonly known that those not getting what they need, want, or desire out of different aspects of life will go looking elsewhere. God doesn’t allow for that excuse. We have been given all that could be desired!
When I was weaning my two children from breastfeeding, they absolutely despised every “false way” of a milk substitute. Mama’s milk could not have been more adequate being perfectly designed by God to fulfill its need, and they seemed to know that! There is no greater comfort to a newborn than that feeding time and nothing more important to their growth than getting fed. Watch a baby or toddler as you try to feed them something other than what they have grown to love…mothers know the result!
Don’t desire a false way when the only truth has been graciously offered. Let’s contend earnestly for what has been handed down once for all to us, His saints (Jude 1:3)! We have the truth, let’s be responsible and efficient in displaying the benefits of it! Let’s be proud and rejoice in the gifts of peace, wisdom, understanding, and surety that God’s Laws bring, knowing that He is the only source.
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