I’m impressed, and I hope you are, at the way that Psalm 119 looks at so many aspects of God’s word and its application to our lives. That is, in fact, another of the reasons for this alphabet acrostic style of this psalm. It’s as if to praise the word of God to us from A to Z. So, let’s take a look at a few more aspects of God’s word in today’s readings.
The way to revival (Psalm 119:25) — The psalmist says that he’s in the dust, low down, but that he expects God’s word to revive him. Where do you go for revival, to pick yourself up? TV? The movies? A video game? A shopping spree? A phone conversation with a friend? A vacation? A spa? How about God’s word? It gives us hope; it gives us light: it gives us assurance of forgiveness after we repent; it tells us of a fresh start; it tells us that God is on our side; and it gives us a better way — just to name a few things. Do your spirits need a lift? Turn to Scripture, read, meditate on it, and let the Lord’s word revive you. You might be surprised. It’s like fresh, cold water on a hot, thirsty day.
God’s ways rather than vanity (Psalm 119:37) — Here’s a good piece of advice, keep your eyes on God’s ways rather than vanity. “So, what’s vanity exactly?” you might ask. Solomon in Ecclesiastes tells us that is most everything around us — you know, those things we tend to pay so much attention to, invest in, and believe to be so important most of the time, because the world says that they’re important. Of course, you can’t ignore some of these things; you’ve got to pay the bills and take care of family. The psalmist (inspired by God) is simply urging us to make sure that we have the right price tags on the right things, that the eyes of our hearts are set and focused on things above rather than the things below. The things below offer nothing permanent; that’s why they’re called “vanity”. God’s ways, on the other hand, are good, eternal, and lead to eternity.
Freedom in God’s commands? (Psalm 119:45) — Despite the fact that people often think of God’s word as “freedom”, it is real liberty indeed. In Genesis 3 the serpent hissed that Eve should take God’s command as a restriction, a barrier to her real freedom; and since it worked so well, Satan has continued (with good effect) to whisper it into the ear (heart) of every human being ever born. But look at the result: is this fallen world really free? Reality is that we are enslaved to its mortality, its brokenness, and its futility. I don’t know if you ever thought about it, but anything good has its rules — from music, to poetry, to art, to engineering, to math, to medicine. It is within the parameters of the rules that art, music, science, and literature are made beautiful; without the rules it merely becomes chaos. It’s the difference between unremarkable trash and something valuable. So also in our lives. Freedom, real liberty, is found in God’s commands. “So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, ‘If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.’” John 8:31, 32, NAS95.
See you tomorrow, Lord willing.