Promises and Prayer

“Keep steady my steps according to your promise, and let no iniquity get dominion over me.” Psalm 119.133 Previously, the poet appealed for God to deal with him graciously, because he knew of God’s—through God’s Word—of how God deals with those who love him (132). Here, he prays for protection, for the Lord to steady his steps and guard him …

Meditating on Grace

“Turn to me and be gracious to me, as is your way with those who love your name.” Psalm 119.132 The psalmist has been singing of the value of God’s Word. He has dwelt on the testimonies of God. He has meditated on the precepts of the Lord. Because of this, he knows the ways of the Lord; he knows …

Gasping for Life

“I open my mouth and pant, because I long for your commandments.” Psalm 119.131 What an exaltation of the value of God’s Word! The psalmist’s praise is building here. He began this stanza singing of the wonders of God’s testimonies (129). Then, he sang of Scripture’s ability to give light and understanding to the simple (130). Knowing these truths, he …

We’re All Simple

“The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.” Psalm 119.130 Here, the psalmist celebrates one of the most profound and universal truths of Scripture. That the author of Scripture is God necessarily means that it contains wisdom high above the highest of earthly wisdom. In comparison to the word of God, every person is simple. …

Wonder and Devotion

“Your testimonies are wonderful; therefore my soul keeps them.” Psalm 119.129 The current verse marks the opening of a new stanza in this epic psalm. This section contains pure exaltation, perhaps the height of praise in the poem. That begins with this opening verse, where the poet sings of his wonder at the testimonies of the Lord. This wonder drives …

Transformed by the Word

“Therefore I consider all your precepts to be right; I hate every false way.” Psalm 119.128 This verse ends the current stanza, and serves as a culmination of a string of statements that build upon one another. The poet has seen that God’s righteousness and justice compel God to act when his law is broken (126). Because of that, he …

Above Fine Gold

“Therefore I love your commandments above gold, above fine gold.” Psalm 119.127 When understood on its face, this verse exalts the value of God’s word. When understood in the context of the previous verse, the psalmist’s praise reaches new heights. In the previous verse, the poet spoke of the Lord acting, the Lord bringing justice, because his law had been …

Vengeance

“It is time for the Lord to act, for your law has been broken.” Psalm 119.126 This prayer provides another profound example of the psalmist’s trust in the Lord. He knows that the law of God has been violated. He has spoken numerous times in this psalm of the wicked, insolent enemies attacking him. Notice though, that he doesn’t seek …

Still Dependent

“I am your servant; give me understanding, that I may know your testimonies!” Psalm 119.125 With this prayer, the psalmist returns to one of his most-used pairings in this psalm—devotion and dependence. He declares that he is God’s servant, declaring his devotion. Then, he asks for understanding from the Lord, declaring his dependence. We cannot get far from this pairing …

According to Your Steadfast Love

“Deal with your servant according to your steadfast love, and teach me your statutes.” Psalm 119.124 In the previous verse, the psalmist displayed great expectancy that the Lord would fulfill his promises. Here, he longs for that in his life particularly. He knows and expects fulfillment of the Lord’s promises. In the current verse, he narrows this to God’s particular …