Friday, September 2, 2011

Reflecting on the Psalms: Chapter 119 verses 129-144

Psalm 119: 129-144

129Thy testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them.
130The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.
131I opened my mouth, and panted: for I longed for thy commandments.
132Look thou upon me, and be merciful unto me, as thou usest to do unto those that love thy name.
133Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.
134Deliver me from the oppression of man: so will I keep thy precepts.
135Make thy face to shine upon thy servant; and teach me thy statutes.

136Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy law.

137Righteous art thou, O LORD, and upright are thy judgments.
138Thy testimonies that thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful.
139My zeal hath consumed me, because mine enemies have forgotten thy words.
140Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.
141I am small and despised: yet do not I forget thy precepts.
142Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth.
143Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me: yet thy commandments are my delights.

144The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live.

Chapter 119 verses 129-144

His testimones are indeed wonderful (v. 129), which I express to Him by obeying (or keeping) them. If God tells me to do something that is in line with His will for my life, I'm gonna do it without question. I try to keep the commandments in His Word, which isn't always an easy thing to do. Some days the whole taming my tongue thing is easier said than done. I may not always know what will result from something that God is doing in my life (v. 130), but trusting Him is what will bring life. In my darkest moment, I did trust trust in Him even though I didn't know what was gonna result from that, but I did begin to see the fruits of trusting Him when He started to keep me from the enemy's influence. One of the fruits was that He dealt with the enemy while I focused on my relationship with Him. I'm not sure exactly how verse 131 would relate to my darkest moment, but it does comfort that if I'm waiting on God for Him to tell me what to do, I'm waiting on something that pertains to His plan for my life and I won't get short changed. For clarity, here's Matthew Henry's insight on the verses 132-133, "And every one may pray, Look thou upon me, and be merciful unto me as thou usest to do unto those that love thy name. We must beg that the Holy Spirit would order our steps." What I get out of verse 132 is that God express His mercy towards me because He loves me. Even though I rebelled against Him in my darkest moment, He was still waiting for me to come back to Him (through prayer)  because He wasn't finished with me. In prayer, I do ask Him to direct my steps, but perhaps I should metnion that to Him more often. It could help me to tame my tongue and not say a curse word just to hear myself say it. I can't say I've dealt much with the oppression of man (v. 134), but I can trust in God when I deal with it because doing so will result in deliverance from any oppression I may deal with, which was the case with my darkest moment. I do desire to learn His statutes (v. 135) and I feel that His face shines upon me when His Word touches me in a way it was something I needed, such as the time I was reading the Book of Joshua for a while while I was taking algebra. I had finished the book before the sememester was over, yes, but what I had learned about crossing over my Jordan and God being my inheritance didn't lose relevance or whatever. I'm not how I'd relate to verse 136, but sometimes I feel bad about disobeying His law -- whether it be by my tongue slipping or watching a movie that goes outside biblical boundaries in terms of content. I am thankful, though, that when I mess up, I can come back to Him and try not to mess up again.

For clarity, here's Henry's thoughts on verses 137-139, "God never did, and never can do wrong to any. The promises are faithfully performed by Him that made them. Zeal against sin should constrain us to do what we can against it, at least to do more in religion ourselves." I could relate to verses 137-138 because in my darkest moment, I kept in mind God's promise that He would free me from the enemy's grip and He proved to be faithful by answering my prayer, which resulted in Him protecting me and helping me out during that rough time. I can't say I can relate to verse 139 in the sense of my enemies forgetting (or disregarding) God's Word, but I hate sin, which I think is represented by the fact that I love Him and that some people in my church see me as someone in my age range who cares the most about my relationship with Christ. Not to say that I'm better than anyone, but I think it's a shame that myself and a young lady (in my church) are the one two are seen as the ones in our demographic as the ones who are the most passionate about the Lord. I'm not gonna point fingers at anyone either, but I wish more people would realize that God wants your all and not some half way deal. I'm not judging their relationships with Christ either -- the ones who aren't as passionate about Him -- but I feel that some people in age group take their relationship with Him for granted, which makes me somewhat about where they're at in their walk with Him, especially if they don't come from a Christian background. Enough getting off on tangent, though -- just felt like getting that off my chest. In regards to verse 140, I will say that God's Word is pure, which I express to Him by following it because I love it. "Very pure" in this case can mean "refined" or "thoroughly tested." And don't tell me His Word wasn't tested during the time I went through the Book of Joshua while taking algebra. Small, in the case of verse 141, means "insignificant," according to Bullinger. When that guy was giving me a hard time in my amth class, I did feel small and despised, but God's precepts were what helped me get through. Verse 142 pretty much speaks for itself, but I would say that verse 143 relates to my darkest moment because even though Satan was causing me trouble and trying to get me to fall, I decided to cling to His Word and find delight in the fact that He would help me out and free me, which I am forever grateful for. I am thankful that the righteousness of His testimonies (or statues) is everlasting, which means to me that they've stood the test of time and continue to. What "give me understanding, and I shall live" means to me is that by understand His Word, I will live the life He wants me to live and trust in Him when the hard times hit in order to live out the life He had (and still has) in mind, which I trying to live as best I can. Some examples that fit into that would be my darkest moment and the time I read Joshua while taking algebra. In relation to the latter, I understood and applied the priniciples from the Book of Joshua that would help me to succeed, particualrly because God knew I needed to read that book at the time. I believe if I read some other book at the time or didn't bother read Joshua at all, I wouldn't have gotten as much out of His Word in terms of applying it to passing algebra.

                                                 Sources used:

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

Bullinger, E.W. The Companion Bible.

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