Psalm 119 – HE, VAU
We see the psalmist again asking for understanding and showing his whole-hearted approach to God’s word. There is a contrast to how the psalmist must feel when living off of God’s path, as it is shown when he is on the right path he delights in it. I need to make sure to keep my focus on the Lord so that I can see the wonders and delight of walking His path, and not the temporary good feelings that the world provides when I am lured to dabble in its ways instead of God’s.
We see the word “quicken” again in v.37 also written as “give me life” in v.25, previously quicken in “thy word” now in “thy way”. In this grouping of verses he asks God to help him turn his desires to God’s will and ways, away from selfish gain and worldly things of no ultimate value. He doesn’t ask for his current desire to be adjusted, but instead for his heart to, meaning desire for now and for the future. He asks for a change to his whole outlook on everything, not one instance, so that he can then change his mind for the next time temptation faces him. He doesn’t even want to see it as an option “turn away mine eyes from beholding…” (v.37). If we constantly seek the Lord, our desire for earthly pleasure will wane, and instead be found in Him. It is so encouraging to think that the closer I get to God, the less appeal and struggle I can face in fighting the lure of the world, because I will have stored up His word in my heart, and He will be a shield for me.
The psalmist seeks his salvation, deliverance from sin and its consequences that he knows God has promised him as one who follows the Lord. He trusts that knowledge in the word of God will let him face his persecutors. I love the word “wherewith/wherewithall” used in v.42, it encompasses the knowledge, will, skill, and ability to accomplish something, and all these things are coming from God’s word. I need to further trust in God to feel this freedom that living fully in Him has to offer, freedom from worry, stress, fear, anxiety, and the unknown, because when I put my trust in Him, I know there is nothing I will face that I can’t get through with Him by my side.
Though the psalmist keeps asking for God to “teach him” (v.26, 33), “make him understand” (v.27, 34), “strengthen him” (v.28), “grant him…” (v.29), “Bless him with salvation” (v.41), we should also note that in return he offers to “talk of God’s wondrous works” (v.27), “keep his law” (v.44), “speak of His testimonies” (v.46), “praise Him” (v.48). We need the support of God and His word to live the life He wants for us, but as we ask for His help regularly, we shouldn’t forget to praise Him, thank Him, and rejoice in what He has given us, sharing the knowledge He has provided us with others.
Psalm 119:33-48HE.33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end. 34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep thy law; yea, I shall observe it with my whole heart. 35 Make me to go in the path of thy commandments; for therein do I delight. 36 Incline my heart unto thy testimonies, and not to covetousness. 37 Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way. 38 Stablish thy word unto thy servant, who is devoted to thy fear. 39 Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good. 40 Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: quicken me in thy righteousness.VAU.41 Let thy mercies come also unto me, O Lord, even thy salvation, according to thy word. 42 So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: for I trust in thy word. 43 And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; for I have hoped in thy judgments. 44 So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever. 45 And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts. 46 I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed. 47 And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved. 48 My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.