1 How blessed are those whose way is blameless, Who walk in the law of the Lord. 2 How blessed are those who observe His testimonies, Who seek Him with all their heart. 3 They also do no unrighteousness; They walk in His ways. 4 You have ordained Your precepts, That we should keep them diligently. 5 Oh that my ways may be established To keep Your statutes! 6 Then I shall not be ashamed When I look upon all Your commandments. 7 I shall give thanks to You with uprightness of heart, When I learn Your righteous judgments. 8 I shall keep Your statutes; Do not forsake me utterly!
Laws, precepts, statutes, commandments, and judgments; those words have a cold, unfeeling, and maybe even a harsh sound to them. They are words that tell us what our place is and put us in our place! We prefer softer words with a lot of leniency built in. Words like these make us feel talked down to and small.
Which is exactly what they were intended to do.
The writer of Psalm 119 purposely chose those words as he was celebrating the revealed Word of God and giving praise to the author of The Word. As I read Psalm 119 I am confronted with several important truths.
1) The Bible is not a conversation. The Bible is a revelation, THE revelation from God, of God, and about God. He is telling us what He wants us to know, to listen to, and to obey.
2) God is above me and over me. He IS talking down to me! He is holy and I am sinful. We are not peers and we are not His collaborative team. He is our Lord, our Creator, and the Holy Other. I AM small. One of my definitive problems is that I don’t really believe I am as small before God as I am.
3) The Bible is serious business. The words used to describe its nature and character communicate unmistakably this is not something to be trifled with, winked at, ignored, or over-looked.
4) The Bible is for me, for all of us. Psalm 119 communicates that God revealed His Word for our lives. It is eternally relevant, it is precisely practical, and was given for our good so that we can know God and properly relate to Him.