Summary: This world can offer us treasure and pleasure in vast sums… but all of that lasts for only a season… but what Christ brings into our hearts and into our lives is more valuable than any treasure because what He brings is eternal life with God the Father… a
December 21, 2011
Oak Park Baptist Church – Wednesday Bible Study Series
Psalm 119:65-72 (ESV) – 9 of 22
Tet – 9th letter of the Hebrew alphabet…
As we saw last week, we will see an underlying attitude and mindset within tonight’s eight verses where the psalmist reflects his understanding of God and his need for God and God’s law. Once again, this underlying theme does not simply appear in these 8 verses, but is constant throughout the chapter…
65Do good to Your servant according to Your word, LORD.
When reading this in the ESV, it almost sounds like the psalmist has some doubt and needs reassurance but actually the better reading of Hebrew is a more assured attitude reflected by the psalmist. The NASB reads, “…You have dealt well with Your servant…” which reflects a pattern that God has delivered on His promise and that promise is in accordance with the word of God.
The Holman Christian Standard translates this verse: “Lord, You have treated Your servant well…” revealing a reflection from the psalmist in his knowledge of God’s goodness to deal with humanity and do so in a loving and grace-filled manner.
The psalmist exhibits no fear in his statement but a full and complete confidence and understanding about the Law of God which is his template for life and is meant for his prospering and NOT for his demise.
66Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust Your commands.
Here the psalmist expresses a firm desire to learn from God’s law and that he desires God to guide and direct his path…
The Hebrew word for good judgment here is tah-ahm which means judgment or discernment. It carries with is a sense of personality as well… in other words it’s a PERSONAL judgment… sort of like our own personal tastes… The psalmist is asking God to teach him how to digest God’s law and it become part of WHO he is…
Why does he do this? Because he fully trusts God and the law God has set forth. The word used here by the psalmist is ah-mahn which means trust or faith, but it carries with it a construction meaning as well… representing the support beams for the doors of your house… something you must have FULL trust in to live in the house! This gives us a more full picture of what the psalmist is saying… he FULLY trusts the law of God and is willing to dwell IN that law as well!
67Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey Your word.
When trouble comes our way, far too often act the wrong way. Here the psalmist reflects that this is how he USED to react to trouble and affliction… he would go astray, but now he has learned to trust in God’s word to guide him and his reactions to affliction within his life!
Like the psalmist we also face afflictions in life and far too often we react to those afflictions as the sinners we are… we go astray in our actions! But what the psalmist is charging his readers to do is to focus on obedience to God’s Law… that obedience to the Law of God will lead and guide us when we face our afflictions and it is going to teach us HOW to live accordingly DURING those afflictions… all according TO God’s Word.
68You are good, and what You do is good; teach me Your decrees.
God is the only ‘good’ in this world… learning God’s law opens up that goodness to us…
How often do we use the word ‘good’ in connection to this world? Many times we look to the ‘good’ of the world as our standard, and this is where we suffer. However, when our focus is in the right place it must be on God and HIS goodness… our standard should always be God’s goodness…and NEVER the ‘goodness’ of this world.
The Hebrew word here for ‘good’ is towb which simply means good, but in this context it refers to the goodness of God which resides at a higher plane than that of the goodness of humanity. God’s goodness is something we must ascribe to and seek after, and NOT what we may see as ‘good’ in this world!
69Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies, I keep Your precepts with all my heart.
Keeping his focus where it NEEDS to be the psalmist prevents himself from self pity or grumbling over his situation. In our lives we are going to face the smears and taunts of the world… they will attack us with lies and perversions of what they deem as truth… this is something that is going to happen, we cannot avoid it HOWEVER the psalmist gives us a template on how to handle just such a thing… WE FOCUS ON GOD’S LAW… HIS WORD!