March 30, 2020
Hello Church Family,
Seeing everyone working together in the move on Saturday, knowing the behind the scenes actions of prayer and preparations before Saturday, reminded me of how much I miss seeing all of you. Finding ourselves in some interesting times, I thought I would write some insights from God’s Word that have helped me and I pray will encourage you. As I have been saying in the virtual classes, the Psalms provide us with encouraging words during difficult times. Psalm 119 is one of those Psalms.
Like anyone, I can easily get distracted during these difficult times. None of us can afford to be distracted and we need encouragement in this spiritual battle. Regaining our focus involves focusing on our Creator which means we must spend time in His Word. Furthermore, we show that we value our relationship with the Lord when we value His Word. We value the Word of God by studying it (Psalm 119:2-10); obeying it (Psalm 119:129); by storing it in our soul (Psalm 119:11); by declaring it to others (Psalm 119:13); and rejoicing over it (Psalm 119:14-16).
Psalm 119 is a long Psalm written in a Hebrew acrostic focusing on the complete sufficiency of God’s Word. Identifying the author of this unique Psalm is difficult. Some say David, others say Solomon, still others say Ezekiel, while others claim the author is an anonymous man taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 B.C. Regardless of the little “a” human author, the big “A” author, God the Holy Spirit, provides a very clear message. The Psalm teaches us why the Word of God should be valued (Psalm 19:7-10 also teaches the value of God’s Word).
Psalm 119:33-40 is the HE section (the Hebrew letter HE looks like an open window; see the image below) emphasizing the value of God’s Word that provides the proper perspective. Psalm 119:33 begins with an imperative of request, asking God to provide instruction on the way of life built on God’s standard. The Psalmist wants to know this way of life intending to walk according to that standard through faith obedience. The Psalmist paints a picture of maintaining close watch over the observance of God’s commands. Such vigilance helps us maintain the correct focus during difficult times: consider how Paul encouraged Timothy in difficult times – 2 Timothy 3:1, 14-17.
We can easily lose focus during difficult times (as well as prosperous times) by being distracted with the circumstances. Distraction means we have lost the correct perspective and need to be reminded of the One who provides the Biblical perspective. We will continue with Psalm 119:33-40 which provides the divine viewpoint perspective to help us avoid being distracted. I hope this look at vs. 33 is encouraging to you. Next time we will continue with vs. 34. Until then, pray as the Psalmist that we will observe God’s Word in these difficult times.
Pressing on in Christ,