Friday, May 28, 2010

The Gift of God's Word Part III

ARENA OF THE 119TH PSALM

In other words, what area of life is this Psalm dealing with?

Jonathan Edwards wrote: “I know of no part of the Holy Scriptures where the nature and evidences of true and sincere godliness are so fully and largely insisted on and delineated as in the 119th Psalm. The Psalmist declares his design in the first verses of the Psalm, keeps his eye on it all along and pursues it to the end.”

This psalm may be considered as the statement of a believer's experience. As far as our views, desires, and affections agree with what is here expressed, they come from the influences of the Holy Spirit, and no further.

The pardoning mercy of God in Christ is the only source of a sinner's happiness. Everyone wants to be happy don’t they? Everyone goes to great lengths to find happiness and even further lengths to remain happy. So we think that position, power, possessions, pursuits, programs, popularity, promiscuity, pretense, passion, promise, or promotion, especially of self will bring us happiness.

The tragedy is that happiness comes from a word that means happenstance. Happiness comes from favorable circumstances. So if the circumstances are favorable or to our liking or desires, then we are happy. But if the favorable circumstances are removed then happiness is lost.

What is true happiness? Or more importantly where is it found? Well, again, the pardoning mercy of God in Christ is the only source of a sinner's happiness. So then the next question then should be, well how do I maintain this happiness or what the bible calls joy? The answer is in this Psalm.

Those are most happy, who are preserved most free from the defilement of sin, who simply believe God's testimonies, and depend on his promises. If the heart be divided between God and the world, the heart is evil. But when the saints carefully avoid all sin; they are conscious of much evil that clogs them in the ways of God, but not of that wickedness which draws them out of those ways.

The Devil would make men think they can be happy without being free from sin, without believing God’s testimonies, or without being fully dependent on God’s promises. The Devil would make men think they are at liberty to follow the word of God or not follow it, as they please. But the desire and prayer of a godly man agrees with the will and command of God. Did you get that?

Isn’t this what Jesus taught? "If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it." (John 14:14, ESV)  "Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full." (John 16:24,ESV)

What does it mean to ask in Jesus name? To ask according to His authority, His power, His will and wishes.
So the desire & the prayer of a godly man agrees with the will and command of God.

If a man expects by obedience in one thing to purchase indulgence for disobedience in others, his hypocrisy will be detected; if he is not ashamed in this world, everlasting shame will be his portion.

The psalmist coveted, he yearned, and his whole being was given over to learn the laws of God and to give God the glory. And true believers understand that if God forsakes them, the temper will be too hard for them. (Ps 119:9-16)

The one theme is the word of the Lord. The Psalmist sets his subject in many lights, and treats it in many ways, but he seldom omits to mention the word of the Lord in each verse under some one or other of the many names by which he knows it; and even if the name be not there, the subject is still heartily pursued in every stanza. He who wrote this wonderful song was saturated with those books of Scripture which he possessed.

So, the arena covers the spiritual dynamics that are designed to lead God’s people into a full, abundant, joyful, and yet humble and obedient life to the praise and glory of God!

Do you want to live a full life? Do want an abundant life, a life that is filled with joy? The blue-prints, the schematics, the directions, and the steps are right here in the word of God, especially in this particular Psalm!

APPLICATION OF THE 119TH PSALM

Andrew Bonar tells of a simple Christian in a farmhouse who had meditated the Bible through three times. This is precisely what this Psalmist had done; -- he had gone past reading into meditation.

Like Luther, David had shaken every fruit tree in God's garden, and gathered golden fruit there from.

"The most, "says Martin Boos, "read their Bibles like cows that stand in the thick grass, and trample under their feet the finest flowers and herbs." It is to be feared that we too often do the like. This is a miserable way of treating the pages of inspiration. May the Lord prevent us from repeating that sin while reading this priceless Psalm?

There is very evident growth in David’s understanding of the subject of the word of God. That is our application, to more fully understand the words of God and to live them. To grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord and His almighty, powerful, and majestic word.

Ultimately, what is the application of the whole bible? I think it can be summed up this way; we are to live our lives fully pleasing unto God, fruitful in every good work, crucifying the passions of the flesh, and reflecting and magnifying the glory of God. In order to do these things we must know His revealed will and obey it.

We must believe these words from Charles Spurgeon:

“This sacred ode is a little Bible, the Scriptures condensed, a mass of Bibline, Holy Writ rewritten in holy emotions and actions. Blessed are they who can read and understand these saintly aphorisms; they shall find golden apples in this true Hesperides, and come to reckon that this Psalm, like the whole Scripture which it praises, is a pearl island, or, better still, a garden of sweet flowers.”

4 comments:

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

Another good post Gregg, it's like going to church everyday reading your blog. Thanks very much.

Yvonne,

THE OLD GEEZER said...

Brother Gregg

Thank you for an eye opening study of Psalm 119. It was very convicting to see how short I fall when it comes to spending time in deep meditation on the word of God.

I've read the Bible through many times over the years and studied and even taught much of it, but I know in my heart that I have a long way to go to digest and meditate on God's Word the way you have described.

Thanks again,
Your Brother in Christ, Ron

Gregg said...

Yvonne - well, my intent is necessarily to cause you to feel as you are going to church everyday. I just want to glorify God and be a blessing to you and everyone.

OG - your welcome. I am glad it was "eye-opening." I just wanted to offer some tid-bits to chew on and rejoice over. I do feel that we push reading the bible rather than meditating on it and tasting it. Or maybe we push tasting rather than eating and digesting?

Lloyd said...

Thank you Gregg for another great Bible study. It is never a burden to meditate on the Word of God or gather with the Saints to worship. God's blessings to you. Lloyd