Summary: How does the Word of God affect your life? Your heart? Your reactions? Your spirit? The psalmist answers these questions in this section of this chapter!
November 30, 2011
Oak Park Baptist Church – Wednesday Bible Study Series
Psalm 119:49-56 (ESV) – 7 of 22
49Remember Your word to Your servant, in which You have made me hope.
The word ‘remember’ here in this verse is very important. It is the Hebrew word Zaw-kar – which means… to remember, recall, or call to mind. It can also be used to relate the thought of “to be brought to remembrance OR to be remembered, thought of OR brought to mind
Another nuance of this word is that it can be used to reveal the CAUSE for recall, the cause for remembering… or even the making of a memorial in order TO remember a thing…
So the psalmist is emphasizing the WORK of God’s word in his life how it is the CAUSE of his remembrance of God’s law… and because he has the remembrance of God’s word… He has great hope!
The term used by the psalmist here for God’s Word is the Hebrew word Dabar or Dabaw which is one of the nine words I gave you at the beginning of this study that represent the Law of God or the Word of God throughout this entire chapter. To refresh your memory, the Hebrew word Dabar means these are the utterances of God Himself… He is speaking these words to be written down.
So what we have here is the psalmist saying that the very utterances or speech of God brings him a remembrance of the Law and ultimately that brings hope into his heart.
The term ‘servant’ here is the Hebrew word eh-bed which is equivalent to the Greek word doulos which Paul uses in all of the introductions for his letters to the churches where he calls himself a servant of Christ or a bondslave of Christ.
Here the psalmist is revealing his view of his standing before God. He is a willing and submissive servant to God and God’s plans, and he draws hope from the Law that God provides for him… a hope that he knows will not abandon him or leave him wanting.
50This is my comfort in my affliction, that Your promise gives me life.
He is not left wanting because, as he reveals in v.50, this hope he has in God’s word brings him ‘comfort’ in his time of trouble, and his life is made whole in the promise that comes from the law of God.
This verse begins with the impersonal pronoun ‘this’… to which we must know what ‘this’ is the author speaking about. As I just mentioned the ‘this’ here points back to the ‘hope’ that he claims in v.49.
The author of the psalm uses the Hebrew word Ithiel which can be translated as an English phrase that means "God is with me"… in looking at this we can see that the psalmist had a wonderful picture of hope… he describes his hope as ‘God is with me’
What greater hope can we have than to say “God is with me!” This is the hope we now have in Christ… The One whom the prophet Isaiah proclaimed would come… the One he said would be named:
“Immanuel” - God with us!
When we receive Jesus Christ into our hearts and receive Him as Lord and Savior, we have the ULTIMATE hope of all hope… we have “God with us!” We can say with confidence… just as the psalmist does here… “God is with me!” and that is our hope… and with our ‘hope’ found in Jesus we have new life… an eternal life with God the Father!
51The insolent utterly deride me, but I do not turn away from Your law.
When the psalmist proclaims his hope that is found in God’s law, he is ridiculed… likewise in the world today believers are ridiculed about our faith in an unseen God…
Aberrant and deviant behavior are accepted and even encouraged, and society promotes them and places pressure on all to accept these ‘alternate’ lifestyles, but when Christianity is brought up or discussed… INTOLERENCE is all we see!
There is NO room for that in our society say many people… they ridicule and deride us who believe in God and that Jesus was born of a virgin and raised from the dead and now saves us from our sin…
The psalmist knew of this prejudice but we find that he did not cater to their pressures… he turns TO God’s word when under persecution, not away from it!
The Hebrew word here for insolent is zed means ‘arrogant ones’ or those who are presumptuous which is defined as those who are inconsiderate, disrespectful, or overconfident, especially in doing something when they are not entitled or qualified to do it…
In other words, those who are UNQUALIFIED to judge me are casting judgment upon me… and the psalmist understands that this is not to dissuade him from his obedience to the Law of God. So instead of turning away… he turns TO the Law of God in such a time.