Pondering Psalm 119:41-80

There were several verses from this section of Psalm 119 that grabbed my attention. Here they are and a few comments about each one.

v. 43 “Do not snatch the word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws.”

Why would God snatch His word away from the Psalmist? Literally, He would not. But figuratively, it might at times feel that way to the writer. For instance his voice would be silenced were he to fall into open and unrepentant sin. Or were he to lose his health in a tragic way. Or were he to be captured by his enemies and put to death. So another way to say what the Psalmist is saying would be this: “Lord, protect me, guard me, enable me to always have a voice that can speak with boldness about your Word.” (see similar verses such as v.29,36-37)

v.59 “I have considered my ways and turned my steps to your statutes.”

There is a lot of intentionality in this verse. The Psalmist has been very intentional about looking at his own life and doing some self evaluation. He has seen where his way of doing things does not line up with God’s way of doing things and has then deliberately and intentionally changed the direction of his life. There is repentance in this verse. There is a statement of faith in this verse. There is metamorphosis in this verse. What a great thing to be able to exclaim to God: “I have considered my ways and turned my steps to your statutes.”

v.67,71,75  “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word./It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees./I know, O Lord, that you are righteous, and in faithfulness you have afflicted me.

No one would ever say “Lord please send affliction upon me that I might learn to obey your word.” But, often, after the fact, it is easy to see how God has used affliction in our life to shape us. I know that this has proven true for me in the wake of the accident we had last year in India. I can easily say with the Psalmist, “in faithfulness you have afflicted me.”

Perhaps you are realizing along with me why I love Psalm 119. So many choice verses to ponder and pray. Already looking forward to this next week.

Next Week: Psalm 119: 81-128

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