Word-Minded People (September 13, 2011)

[33] Teach me, O LORD, the way of your statutes; and I will keep it to the end.
[34] Give me understanding, that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart.
[35] Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it.
[36] Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain!
[37] Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.
[38] Confirm to your servant your promise, that you may be feared.
[39] Turn away the reproach that I dread, for your rules are good.
[40] Behold, I long for your precepts; in your righteousness give me life!
(Psalm 119:33-40 ESV)

In verses 33-37 the Psalmist asks that God would apply his Word to his heart. There are five reasons why he wants God to do this:

  1. So that I will persevere (Read 33)
    1. “Unless thou teach me, this perseverance will not be found in me.” –Calvin; “Outward revelation is of no avail without the inward teaching. A blind man cannot see at noon day.” –Bridges.
    2. “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”
      (Matthew 7:24-27 ESV)
  2. So that I will live a passionate life of obedience (Read 34)
    1. Observing the commandments, or living a godly life is evidence of God’s work in your life because we don’t live that way naturally.
    2. “Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.” (James 3:13-18 ESV)
  3. So that I will enjoy the Christian life (Read 35)
    1. We go on our way rejoicing because we have been changed by the power of God and it is God who is at work in our lives, not we ourselves!
    2. “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”
      (Philippians 2:12-13 ESV)
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