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In this blog, there will be a variety of material: thoughts on Bible books, book reviews, historical characters, aspects of Scottish church history and other things.

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Psalm 119:41-48 - Speaking about God's Law

The psalmist is longing for a personal experience of the Lord’s faithful love. He knows that he can ask for this blessing because the Lord has promised it (v. 41). The psalmist needs this encouragement because he is being taunted by an opponent. In such a circumstance, the best thing for a believer to do is rest on what God has promised in his word (v. 42).

It is clear from verse 43 that the psalmist loved to speak about God’s word. Although he prayed that the Lord would not take it away, the psalmist was also sure that the Lord would help him. As he prayed he anticipated what life is like for those who obey God: such ‘shall walk in a wide place’. Many imagine that the Lord’s commands constrain people whereas the opposite is the case. Obedience to God opens up a life full of his choicest blessings.

The psalmist was so sure of God’s rules that he was ready to announce them to mortals (kings) who imagined that they made the rules that matter. Obviously rulers make laws, but often they don’t know if they will be of any benefit. In contrast, the psalmist knew that God’s ways were best and even rulers should know about them (v. 46). It is statements like this that has led some to suggest that Daniel wrote the psalm. It was certainly the case with him that he loved God’s commandments and spoke about them to powerful rulers (v. 47).

In addition to speaking about God publicly, the psalmist was determined to meditate on them privately. He would do so in an attitude of worship (as he raised his hands), which is the best and only way to meditate on God’s law. Speak to God about his Word and then we will speak to others about it as well.

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