Psalms 119: 1-8 Pastor Cynthia

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Psalm 119: 1-8

Amplified Bible (AMP)

1 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are the undefiled (the upright, truly sincere, and blameless) in the way [of the revealed will of God], who walk (order their conduct and conversation) in the law of the Lord (the whole of God’s revealed will).2 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are they who keep His testimonies, and who seek, inquire for and of Him and crave Him with the whole heart. 3 Yes, they do no unrighteousness [no willful wandering from His precepts]; they walk in His ways.

4 You have commanded us to keep Your precepts, that we should observe them diligently.5 Oh, that my ways were directed and established to observe Your statutes [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying them]!6 Then shall I not be put to shame [by failing to inherit Your promises] when I have respect to all Your commandments.7 I will praise and give thanks to You with uprightness of heart when I learn [by sanctified experiences] Your righteous judgments [Your decisions against and punishments for particular lines of thought and conduct]. 8 I will keep Your statutes; O forsake me not utterly.

The Message

119 1-8 You’re blessed when you stay on course,

walking steadily on the road revealed by God.

You’re blessed when you follow his directions,

doing your best to find him.

That’s right—you don’t go off on your own;

you walk straight along the road he set.

You, God, prescribed the right way to live;

now you expect us to live it.

Oh, that my steps might be steady,

keeping to the course you set;

Then I’d never have any regrets

in comparing my life with your counsel.

I thank you for speaking straight from your heart;

I learn the pattern of your righteous ways.

I’m going to do what you tell me to do;

don’t ever walk off and leave me.

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The writer had a great love for the Word of God. His desire was to obey God and live a Blessed life. This should be every Believer's desire to live according to will of God. Instead they are seeking the hand of God instead of the Face of God. God said his Word is True and that His Word will never fail. Isaiah 40:8 “The [a]grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever. Isaiah 40:8 The apostle Peter quotes this verse (I Pet. 1:24-25) and then adds, “and this Word is the good news which was preached to you”—which confirms as fact that Isaiah is here referring to the times of Christ, the Messiah, the Anointed One.

The law was from God, and it expressed his wise and gracious will. It was a means for living in fellowship with the God who gave.

The blessed or happy man is the one whose life is conformed to the Word of the Lord. Even if he sins and fails, there is provision in the Word for confession and restoration, and this keeps him in an undefiled condition.

It is obedience to His testimonies that counts, not a reluctant, half-hearted, feet-dragging obedience, but a deep, enormous desire to please Him with the whole heart.

Negatively, happiness is found in separation from every form of iniquity. Positively it is following the route the Lord has mapped out for us in the Scriptures. The surest way t abstain from evil is to be completely occupied with doing good.

God’s precepts are not options but commandments, and the are not to be kept haphazardly but diligently.

In verse 5 the Psalmist now moves from what is true in general to what he wants to be true in his own life. In moving insensibly from precept to prayer, he acknowledges that the desire as well as the power to be steadfast in obedience must come ultimately from God.

As long as he keeps all the statues of the Lord, he will be spared from shame that tortures the mind.

From prayer to praise is not a long or difficulty journey. Those who learn to obey God’s righteous ordinances have fullness of joy and this leads to spontaneous adoration.

The Psalmist is determined to follow had after the Lord . But he realizes his own inadequacy. The prayer “Do not forsake me utterly” is not so much a possible actuality as a statement of what the writer feels he might deserve.?

What about you? Have you considered renewing your relationship with the Lord? Have you considered instead of making a New Year’s Resolution for 2014 to do a new you, rather renew your spirit and seek the face of God. I want God. I want to walk in His way and know the next step to take for 2014. Why not let this be your confession. Instead of by passing the Word of God, let the Word of God dwell in you richly. When the World see you, let them see the God you believe in by walking upright before them. We are in the World but we are not of this World.

BARNES COMMENTARY NOTES ON PSALM 119:1-8

Verse 1

Blessed are the undefiled in the way - In the way or journey of life; in the path of religion; in the road which leads to heaven. As life - the religious life - is represented under the image of a journey, the expression here is equivalent to saying, “Blessed are those who in the journey of life - in their religious course - are pure, Sincere, uncontaminated.” On the word way, see the notes at Psalm 1:6. The margin here on the word undefiled, is perfect, or sincere. So the Hebrew. The word is the same as in Job 1:1, where it is rendered “perfect.” See the notes at that passage. The Greek translation is undefiled - ἄμωμοι amōmoi So the Latin, “immaculati.” Luther renders it, “Who live without blemish” or stain. The idea is, “Blessed are they who are upright, sincere, perfect, in their course.” The whole psalm is designed to illustrate this thought, by showing what the influence of a sincere and conscientious attachment to the principles of the law or word of God in the various circumstances of life must be.

Who walk in the law of the Lord - Who habitually obey his law. This constitutes sincerity, uprightness, perfection in a man‘s life, for the law of the Lord is the only just rule of human conduct.

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Verse 2

Blessed are they that keep his testimonies - His commandments or laws, considered as what he bears witness to concerning that which is just, wise, good. Every law of a parent is to his children a testimony on his part of what is wise and right and good; and so every law of God is his solemn testimony as to what is right and good for man. See Psalm 19:7, note; Psalm 25:10, note.

And that seek him with the whole heart - With a sincere desire to know his will and to do it; without hypocrisy or guile; with no selfish or sinister aims. As God knows the heart, all other modes of “seeking” him must be in vain. It is impossible for man to impose on him by appearances.

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Verse 3

They also do no iniquity - See the notes at 1 John 3:9. The meaning is, that they are righteous; their character is that they do that which is right. It cannot mean that all persons who are religious are actually and absolutely perfect - for no man would hold this opinion; no one does hold it. It is general language such as is commonly used to describe an upright or righteous man. The declaration is true of all who are the friends of God - or, who are truly; religious - in the following senses:
(1) That they are habitually and characteristically righteous;
(2) That they intend to do right - for a man who deliberately purposes to do wrong - to lead a life of sin and disobedience, cannot be a pious man.
(3) That when they do err, it is not the result of intention, or the design of their life, but because they are tempted; are overcome with passion; are led by the power of their native corruption of heart to act contrary to their better judgment and their true character.
See Romans 7:14-17. On the other hand, it is true that a man who is not characteristically righteous; who is not an upright man in his dealings; who is not true, and honest, and temperate, and just, and benevolent, cannot be a child of God and heir of heaven. No exactness of orthodoxy, and no fervour of emotion, and no zeal in the cause of religion, can constitute true piety without this.
They walk in his ways - Habitually; constantly; characteristically. They are not merely honest, upright, and just in their dealings with men, but they walk in the ways of God; they are religious.

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Verse 4

Thou hast commanded - All this is here traced to the command of God; to the fact that he has required it. It is not mere human prudence; it is not mere morality; it is not because it will be for our interest; it is because God requires it. This is the foundation of all true virtue; and until a man acts from this motive it cannot be said that he is in the proper sense a righteous man.

To keep thy precepts diligently - Hebrew, “very much;” that is, to do it constantly; faithfully. Each one of his laws is to be observed, and to be observed always, and in all circumstances.

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Verse 5

O that my ways were directed … - Indicating the desire of the pious heart. That desire - a prevailing, constant, uniform desire - is to keep the law of God. It is the aim of the life; it is the supreme purpose of the soul; it is the ruling wish of the man, thus to keep the law of God. He in whose bosom this is not the constant wish cannot be a pious man. The Hebrew particle used here, and rendered “O that,” is a particle denoting a wish, or an earnest desire. The word “ways” denotes the course of life. The whole is expressive of an earnest desire to live in accordance with the law of God. It implies also a sense of dependence on God.

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Verse 6

Then shall I not be ashamed - On the word ashamed, see Job 6:20, note; Psalm 25:2-3, note. The meaning here is, that he would not have occasion to be ashamed; he would not be disappointed; all his hopes would be realized. He would have full evidence of piety; he would enjoy the comforts which he sought in religion; he would feel assured of ultimately obtaining eternal life.

When I have respect unto all thy commandments - literally, “In my looking at all thy commandments.” That is, in his regarding them; in his feeling that all were equally binding on him; and in his having the consciousness that he had not intentionally neglected, violated, or disregarded any of them. There can be no true piety except where a man intends to keep all the commands of God. If he makes a selection among them, keeping this one or that one, as may be most convenient for him, or as may be most for his interest, or as may be most popular, it is full proof that he knows nothing of the nature of true religion. A child has no proper respect for a parent if he obeys him only as shall suit his whim or his convenience; and no man can be a pious man who does not purpose, in all honesty, to keep All the commandments of God; to submit to his will in everything.

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Verse 7

I will praise thee with uprightness of heart - With an upright and sincere heart.

When I shall have learned - Hebrew, “In my learning.” In the practice or act of learning them. His own experience of their nature, influence, and value would lead him to sincere praise. He had no doubt of finding that they were worthy of his praises, and of seeing in them more and more occasion to glorify and honor God. The more we know of God, the more shall we see in him to praise. The larger our acquaintance and experience, the more our hearts will be disposed to magnify his name. This remark must extend to all that there is in God to be learned; and as that is infinite, so there will be occasion for renewed and more elevated praise to all eternity.

Thy righteous judgments - Margin, as in Hebrew, “Judgments of thy righteousness.” The laws or statutes which God, as a righteous or just God, appoints to be the rule of conduct to his creatures.

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Verse 8

I will keep thy statutes - Thy commands; thy laws. This expresses the firm purpose of the psalmist, He meant to keep the law of God; he could confidently say that he would do it - yet coupled with the prayer which follows, that God would not forsake him.

O forsake me not utterly - Hebrew, “To very much;” so as to leave me to myself. His confidence that he would keep the commandments of God was based on the prayer that God would not leave him. There is no other ground of persuasion that we shall be able to keep the commandments of God than that which rests on the belief and the hope that He will not leave us.

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RobynHerself's picture

When others turn against me

Knowing God KNOWS the truth of the matter, even if no one else does, is a great comfort to me.

If good people, also, will stand up and speak up for me when I'm slandered, it helps SO much. Private expressions of confidence and promises of prayer are great, but what you say about me PUBLICY when I'm salaciously defamed means A MILLION times more to me than private visits, emails, cards and phone calls. I need your hugs and condolences, but if you're not willing to defend me before a crowd that had been told lies about me, I'm not sure how much you really care. Being defended by "the righteous" is strengthening. These days, the "righteous" seem one whispered comment or one speculative email from becoming a rabid mob. It's heartbreaking. Since it happened to me, I'm far more aware of it when it's done to other people, whether it's a celebrity, a politician or a neighbor around the corner. (This also answers the question about what has opened my eyes.)

God CANNOT honor us when we spread lies. Most email forwards are lies, unless they are just a pretty poem or Bible verse. Slander can destroy lives. It destroys kings. It destroys nations. It will ultimately destroy those who participate in it. We will reap what we sow.




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