Summary: In Psalms 119:113-136 The Psalmist gives 4 steps to loving God's word.
Loving God’s Word
When I found this passage during my devotional time I must say the words made me stop and examine myself. I asked myself the following questions and I hope and pray that you might ask similar questions as well. Do I really love the word of God the way that I should? Has the unfolding of His words given me a simple man (Psalms 119:130) an understanding of His glory? Do I thirst for every word that has come out of the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4)? Am I thirsty enough for His word that I am willing to give up the short term pleasure that I get from satisfying the evil desires of my heart (James 1:14)? Do I truly believe that when I completely surrender my will to His that I will receive the unspeakable joy of 1 Peter 1:7-9?
These my friends are tough questions of which for the most part I had to humble say NO. Truthfully we as Christians do not always allow His word to penetrate the darkest areas of our hearts (Hebrews 4:12) nor do we all His word to guide our every footstep (Psalms 119:133). In today’s sermon I am going to begin by outlining double mindedness as the real reason why we don’t love His word the way we should. Then I am going to explain the Psalmist’s four steps to faithfully obeying God’s word:
1). Allegiance Shift 100 % to God
2). Pray for protection from the world
3). Pray God will Teach one how to Discern His Truth Rightly
4). Pray God grants you a genuine thirst to read and obey His word
How should Christians walk? The Bible tells us to walk worthy of our calling (Ephesians 4:1), uprightly (Isaiah 57:2) and in the light (1 John 1:7). Since there are many paths and much opposition, it takes determination and effort to stay on the narrow path of righteousness. The biggest problem we face when trying to stay on this narrow path is our double minded attitude about God. Let me give you an illustration.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. I wonder if we are not like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The fictional character Dr. Henry Jekyll is usually portrayed as a large, stylish doctor of prominent stature in the community. While Dr. Jekyll looks good publically there is a war waging in his mind whether to do evil or good. In a desire to maintain his good reputation Dr. Jekyll tries to keep the evil in his mind from being acted upon by taking a special serum that he developed. Instead of the serum containing his evil desires within his mind, Dr. Jekyll turns into a hideous monster who does all sorts of evil acts without any remorse, hence him being called Mr. Hyde. One night, after having violently killed Sir Danvers Carew, he decided to stop these hideous transformations by doing philanthropic work. Believing he had become a good person he looked down at his hands and they were the hands of Mr. Hyde. He had transformed after having taken the serum. Knowing that it was only a matter of time before he permanently became Mr. Hyde, Dr. Jekyll commits suicide so that his evil side may never be released again. – Source: Wikipedia
Double Minded Christians? While the above character is fictional, the concept of a double-minded Christian certainly is not. Double-minded means holding onto two contrary opinions at the same time. When Elijah was on Mount Carmel he asked the children of Israel whom would they follow: Jehovah or Baal. He asks them: “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal is God, follow him” (1 Kings 18:21). Double minded Christians are ones that are born again believers but are not fully determined to follow God. James Montgomery Boice states: Christians want the benefits of believing, but they want their sin too.” Truthfully we have become lukewarm. With one foot in God’s kingdom and one in Satan’s kingdom we believe we can effectively serve our Creator. Don’t we as Christians hold onto conflicting thoughts at the same time? For instance, Scripture says to love one another (John 13:34) but which one of us does not have at least one person we do not like? Scripture says to keep the marriage bed pure (Hebrews 13:4) but who here cannot think of a person that you admire their body? Scripture says to not covet (Exodus 20:17) but who here when the Lotto commercial comes onto our TV does not dream of being rich? Truthfully, we want our lives to be fluid, holding onto the opinion that best meets the circumstance we are in! When our circumstances change – i.e. being in church verses being in the world – we change our allegiance from God to the world. In Psalms 119:113 the Psalmist is saying he too struggles with his double-mindedness and in the next few verses he explains the steps he is taking to remove his “Mr. Hyde” from his mind.