Who are we?

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.

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Righteous from the inside (Psalm 119:137-144)

In this section of the psalm, the author focuses on the fact that God’s laws are righteous. Unlike human legislators, the Lord has no hidden agendas or untold biases in his requirements. Furthermore his law does not change (v. 144).

The psalmist begins by observing that there is no inconsistency between the character of God and his laws (vv. 137-38). We are all familiar with the sad fact that some of our rulers pay no attention to their own rules. Of course, the word for them is hypocrites. But such hypocrisy is not confined to legislators. It can be found in all levels of society and between all relationships. We should be glad that such inconsistency is never found in our God.

The psalmist was fully aware that many people made no attempt to keep God’s law. While he was disappointed by them, the psalmist was not discouraged. Instead observing their wrong behaviour stimulated him to keep God’s laws energetically (v. 139).

As he lived such a lifestyle, the psalmist discovered it was an experience in which he enjoyed the fulfilment of God’s promises (v. 140). The fact that the majority disagreed with him did not prevent him having spiritual help and happiness. And his experience of enjoying fulfilled promises led him to love God’s Word more and more (v. 140).

Neither was the psalmist deterred by his own insignificance from serving God (v. 141), nor did intense opposition prevent his enjoyment of God’s commandments (v. 143). Instead he prayed for greater understanding of God’s law because he knew it was the way to experience true life in his soul. 

As we see God’s law being ignored in our society, the danger we face is that we will become legalistic in our response by focussing only on outward behaviour. Of course, outward conformity to God’s law is important but it must flow from a heart that delights in God and in his requirements. Real life is found in renewed hearts that are continually being renewed. 

No comments:

Post a Comment