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26

When I told of my ways, you answered me;

teach me your statutes.


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26. I have declared my ways. In the first part of this verse he affirms he had prayed sincerely, and had not imitated the proud, who, trusting to their own wisdom, fortitude, and opulence, make not God their refuge. That man is said to declare his ways to God, who presumes neither to attempt nor undertake any thing unless with His assistance, and, depending wholly on His providence, commits all his plans to His sovereign pleasure, and centers all his affections in Him; doing all this honestly, and not as the hypocrites, who profess one thing with their lips, and conceal another within their hearts. He adds, that he was heard, which was of great importance in making him cherish good hope for the future.

In the second part of the verse he solemnly declares, that he holds nothing more dear than the acquiring of a true understanding of the law. There are not a few who make known their desires unto God, but then they would that he would yield to their extravagant passions. And, therefore, the prophet affirms that he desires nothing more than to be well instructed in God’s statutes. This statement is strengthened by the next verse, in which he once more asks the knowledge of these to be communicated to him. In both passages it must be carefully observed, that with the law of God set before us, we will reap little benefit from merely perusing it, if we have not his Spirit as our internal teacher.

Some expositors will have the word which I have translated, I will meditate, to be, I will entreat or argue, and thus the Hebrew term שוח, shuach, is referred both to the words and thoughts. The latter meaning is most in accordance with the scope of the passage. I take the import of the prophet’s words to be this: — That I may meditate upon thy wondrous works, make me to understand thy commandments. We will have no relish for the law of God until he sanctify our minds, and render them susceptible of tasting heavenly wisdom. And from this disrelish springs indifference, so that it is a grievous thing for the world to give a respectful attention to the law of God, having no savor for the admirable wisdom contained in it. With great propriety, therefore, does the prophet pray that this way may be opened to him by the gift of knowledge. From these words we are instructed, that in proportion to the spirit of knowledge given to us, our regard for the law of God, and our delight in meditating on it, ought to increase.




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