Thursday, August 25, 2011

Reflecting on the Psalms: Chapter 119 verses 73-96

Psalm 119:73-96

73Thy hands have made me and fashioned me: give me understanding, that I may learn thy commandments.
74They that fear thee will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in thy word.
75I know, O LORD, that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.
76Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant.
77Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight.
78Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause: but I will meditate in thy precepts.
79Let those that fear thee turn unto me, and those that have known thy testimonies.
80Let my heart be sound in thy statutes; that I be not ashamed.
81My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word.
82Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me?
83For I am become like a bottle in the smoke; yet do I not forget thy statutes.
84How many are the days of thy servant? when wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me?
85The proud have digged pits for me, which are not after thy law.
86All thy commandments are faithful: they persecute me wrongfully; help thou me.
87They had almost consumed me upon earth; but I forsook not thy precepts.

88Quicken me after thy lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth.

89For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.
90Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.
91They continue this day according to thine ordinances: for all are thy servants.
 92Unless thy law had been my delights, I should then have perished in mine affliction.
93I will never forget thy precepts: for with them thou hast quickened me.
94I am thine, save me: for I have sought thy precepts.
95The wicked have waited for me to destroy me: but I will consider thy testimonies.

96I have seen an end of all perfection: but thy commandment is exceeding broad.

Chapter 119 verses 73-96

I like Matthew Henry's comment on verse 73, "God made us to serve him, and enjoy him; but by sin we have made ourselves unfit to serve him, and to enjoy him. We ought, therefore, continually to beseech him, by his Holy Spirit, to give us understanding." I am thankful that I have opportunities to serve Him and He presents those opportunities to me without playing games. I do wanna (continue to) serve Him and I pray that opportunities will come along to do so. That way I will know (or understand) what He wants me to do. I can relate to verse 74 because it reminds me of when I go to Bible study on Thursday nights. Usually, the people there greet me, especially if I show up at a decent time. They know that I'm there to get something out of God's Word and I might even bless 'em with an insight or a scripture. I could pick a verse on overcoming, for example, and it could really hit home for another person. To me, that shows God at work and that He really knows how to stir in the hearts of His people. I can also relate to that verse because during the Bible study, there is a ten minute break and it's always a good thing to get a hug or two during break time. It really shows the camaraderie of God's people and that they're excited to see each other and study His Word together. I also get hugs from elderly ladies on Sundays in church, which is how the excitement of seeing each and knowing that we're excited to enjoy God also applies. I've gotten some compliments from some elderly women about my article in my church's newsletter on being a worship host, which I think I talked about before. In my article, I illustrated God's work in me as a worship host and I kinda figure that the compliments were related to my describing how God has worked in me as a worship host. So knowing (or finding out) that some of the elderly women know how God's worked in my life as a worship host resulted in them being glad when they saw me and continue to see me because I have illustrated that I served God and continue to do so with Hosea 6:6 in mind. Sorry if took a while to get to the point there...I'm just kinda trippin' out tonight. I am thankful for His judgments (or laws) and that they're true (v. 75). If they weren't true, I wouldn't trust in them. I'm nost sure how I'd relate to the "and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me" part since I don't recall being punished by God, but I do find comfort in His merciful kindness (or love), as verse 76 mentions. In my darkest moment, I did find comfort in His love because it protected me from the enemy and helped tme to draw closer to Him. His tender mercies did come to me (v. 77), mostly as a result of others praying for me and being freed from the enemy's grip. To me, the most obvious one(s) would be that my relationship with God was renewed and that the enemy wasn't trying to get me to believe his lies. I did find delight in His law and trust in His promises because doing helped me to overcome. God helps out His people when they experience days of trouble, which was something I remember trusting in. I can't think of an instance in which I've experienced what is described in verse 78, but it gives me confidence in case I ever do. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to get out of verses 79-80, but I do like Henry's insight on them, "He valued the good will of saints, and was desirous to keep up his communion with them. Soundness of heart signifies sincerity in dependence on God, and devotedness to him." I do desire to learn from His Word (v. 80), the more I apply it, the more I imagine God's judgment towards me when that time comes.

To put things into perspective, here's Henry's insight on verses 81-82, "The psalmist sought deliverance from his sins, his foes, and his fears. Hope deferred made him faint; his eyes failed by looking out for this expected salvation." In my darkest my moment, I did kind of wonder when God was gonna exactly get me out of it (v. 82). I do believe that He started working as soon as I called upon Him, but He completely freed from it in His timing since I had to depend on Him to do so. I didn't lose hope in His Word because it was gave me confidence during that time. Knowing He would free me was what kept me going and I will say that if one's faith doesn't endure and if he or she doesn't trust God even in the most unsure of times, his or her faith won't build and mature. "Bottle" (v. 83) can be translated as "wine-skin." To provide clarity, here's Henry's insight on the verse, "He was become like a leathern bottle, which, if hung up in the smoke, is dried and shrivelled up. We must ever be mindful of God's statutes." I must've felt like a bottle in the smoke since I was spiritually dried, but I didn't forget His statutes. His statutes are my foundation and since they endure forever, they're a good foundation to have. I'm not sure how I'd relate to verse 84, but I do like Henry's comment on it, "The days of the believer's mourning shall be ended; they are but for a moment, compared with eternal happiness." That reminds that the trials I face in this life are nothing compared to eternity with God. The enemy did try to dig pits for me (v. 85) in my darkest moment by trying to get me to believe his lies, but I trusted in His commandments (v. 86) -- such as I described before. I am thankful that His promises never fail and that they helped me to deal with the enemy. The fact that the enemy tried to consume me in my darkest moment (v. 87), I feel, was, I guess represented by the fact that I could trust in God to help me out. It was that bad, yes, but when it pours He reigns. How I would relate to verse 88 would be that God helped me out during my darkest moment by His expressing His love towards me by freeing me from the enemy and helping me to grow closer to Him as a result.

I am am thankful that is set heaven in heaven eternally (v. 89). That reminds me that His Word endures forever, which means to me that even though all the Bibles in the world may get taken away on account of liberal agenda in the future, God's people will still know His Word as a result of studying in it. That reminds me that studying His Word is something that is worthy of my time. I like verse 90 because I see God's glory in the fact that His faithfulness has and continues to reveal itself to generations. I praise Him for that because He's not gonna stop working on people even if they've gone off into the deep end and never came to know Him. It, to me, really shows how far His love stretches and that He has a plan for eveyone who comes to Him. And His truth won't go away -- it will keep abiding or remaining, which is carried over in verse 91. What "They continue this day according to thine ordinances" means to me is that heaven and earth operate how God has planned. It's bad on earth now, but I know that eternity with Him will more than make up for that. His law is something in which I find delight (v. 92), which I think is represted by the fact that I wanna read and learn from it as much I can. I also like Henry's thoughts on the verse, "We may make the Bible a pleasant companion at any time. But the word, without the grace of God, would not quicken us." I don't take His Word for granted, which I think I've kind of already expressed already. I don't plan on forgetting His precepts (v. 93) because if I did, they wouldn't quicken me or give me strength when I need it. In my darkest moment, I was reminded that I belonged to Him and knew that He could free me from it according to His precepts (v. 94) -- such as the one about crying out to Him and being freed from trouble. The enemy tried to get to mess up by trying to get me to believe his lies (v. 95), but concentrating on the fact that God was gonna free me was what helped me push through. What verse 96 means to means is that it's a good idea to find perfection in spiritual things than worldy things since worldly things have their flaws.

                                                 Source used:

Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Psalms 119". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
on the Whole Bible".  <>.  

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