May 12, 2021

Pslam 119:153-168

Psalm 119:153- 168 Resh ר: Revival according to the word of God.

Verses 153-154 describes hard times and a plea for new life from God's word. We are reminded that the psalmist's life was not lived in an ivory tower or a secluded place where all he did was study the Scriptures all day long. He lived a real life, interacting with people (some of whom became his enemies or opponents). He lived a life that experienced affliction. In the lives of some, affliction drives them away from God and His word. For the psalmist, such troubled times drove him closer to God and His word.

Verses 155-156 show how the wicked are far from a close salvation. The psalmist understood that the wicked would not be saved, even as Paul later stated (Galatians 5:19-21). Yet he also understood that their wickedness was rooted in their refusal to seek God through His word (they do not seek Your statutes). Though the wicked are far from salvation and far from God's word, the tender mercies of God are close to all who will seek them. In a paradoxical way, though the salvation of God is far from them, God is not far because of His tender mercies.

Verses 157-158 are about keeping to God's word despite persecution. The psalmist lived life in the real world, not sheltered in a constant Scripture-study environment. His trust in the word of God was forged in the real world, a world full of persecutors and enemies - just like us!

Verses 159-160 - Revived by the completely true and lasting word. The psalmist asked God to look at his love for His word, but then asked for revival on the basis of God's lovingkindness instead of on his own merit.

The next section is Shin ש: In awe of God's word. In these stanzas the petitions tend to drop away - stanza twenty-one (the sin/shin stanza) has no explicit prayers at all - and in their place comes a quiet, obedient waiting for God.

Verses 161-162 speak of the treasure of God's awe-inspiring word. In the real-life world of the psalmist, he even interacted with princes - rulers among men, who persecuted him without a cause. Difficult trials - even persecution by those in authority - would not make the psalmist lose his awe of God's word. He did not have a conditional appreciation of the word of God; he loved it in good times and bad. Is it the same for you?

Verses 163-164 - Continually praising the God of the word. The hatred and love in this verse fit together perfectly. One who truly loves the pure truth of God will naturally hate lies. The goodness and the glory of God's word (Your righteous judgments) prompted praise from the psalmist. This praise was constant and continual (seven times a day). How often do you praise God?
Verses 165-166 remind us of the peace of obedience to God's word. The great love that the psalmist had for the law brought real benefits to his life. It brought him great peace and stability in life (nothing causes them to stumble).

Verses 167-168 are about keeping the word of God. The psalmist kept the word of God not only with his outward actions, but also with his soul. His love and conformity to the word of God was deeply rooted, not superficial. For the psalmist, the knowledge that all my ways are before You prompted obedience. He knew that the God who gave the word also observed his life. This is in contrast to the many who live as if God does not observe all...ways of a man. Remember ... obedient faith!