Summary: OBEDIENCE TO GOD’S WORD IS THE PATHWAY TO BLESSING
OBEDIENCE TO GOD’S WORD IS THE PATHWAY TO BLESSING
Each of these 8-verse stanzas is focused around a different letter of the Hebrew alphabet = an acrostic format. This is the ALEPH stanza with each verse
beginning with the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet.
This stanza is a nice general introduction to the themes of the entire psalm.
I. THE PURPOSE OF REVELATION
look at the different terms used for the Word of God:
A. (:1) His law (torah) (“direction, instruction” – Brown, Driver, Briggs)
Zemek: “it depicts God’s special revelation as a gracious gift which points out or shows the way through life’s twisted highways and byways.”
B. (:2) His testimonies (edat)
Zemek: (from Girdlestone) “the law of God is His testimony, because it is His own affirmation concerning His nature, attributes, and consequent demands.”
Zemek: “The Word of God as ‘testimonies’ emphasizes both the authority of their source in the Lord and the accountability of their reception by men.”
C. (:3) His ways
D. (:4) His precepts (piqqudim)
Zemek: (from Eddleman) “oral or written declarations as to what he expects
of man. The original meaning carries the idea of fix, appoint, designate; here is an intimation of the sovereignty of Yahweh… man must submit to it or suffer the consequences.”
E. (:5,8) His statutes (hoq / huqqa)
Zemek: (from Scroggie) “’This word comes from a root which means to hew, cut in, engrave, inscribe; and so comes to mean what is ordained, decreed, prescribed, enacted.’ The common denominator is revelational and
applicational indelibility …” Preserved and binding for all time
F. (:6) His commandments (miswa)
Zemek: “from a root meaning to set up or appoint … emphasizes … the right to give orders”
G. (:7) His righteous judgments (mispat)
Zemek: Relates to “rules of righteous administation”
II. THE PRIORITY AND PRACTICALITY OF OBEDIENCE
look at the different responses to the Word of God:
(look at the different verbs used)
A. (:1) Walking in obedience = blameless
B. (:2) Observing His Word = "seeking Him with all their heart "
C. (:3) "Do no unrighteousness" = "walk in His ways"
D. (:4) Keep His Word Diligently
this is the purpose for which God has ordained His precepts
E. (:5,8) Keep His Statutes
requires Grace of God -- "Oh that my ways may be established!"
F. (:6) Look Upon All His Commandments
(not just those commandments we find appealing)
G. (:7) Learn His Word
III. THE PROSPECT OF BLESSING
A. Prosperity: "How blessed are those ..." (:1,2)
B. Confidence: "Then I shall not be ashamed" (:6)
C. Thanksgiving: "I shall give thanks to Thee" (:7)
D. Contrast -- Opposite Prospect: "Do not forsake me utterly!" (:8)
Obedience and its associated blessing dependent on God’s continued Presence and grace.
Leupold: “no smug self-righteousness here.”
He has promised never to leave us or forsake us.
* * * * * * * * * *
1) What specific blessings have you experienced as a result of specific steps of obedience? How excited do you get in anticipating God’s blessing in the future? How faithful are we in expressing thanksgiving for God’s blessings?
2) Why does the psalmist use so many different words to make reference to God’s revelation?
3) Explain the difference between “sinless perfection” and the type of walk described in these verses..
4) What have you found in your life to be the relationship between disobedience and shame? How has that shame manifested itself?
Download the entire Psalms commentary in pdf format
(including notes on each psalm from other commentators)