“Your testimonies are righteous forever;
give me understanding that I may live.” Psalm 119.144
This verse brings to a close the current stanza. Remember, this stanza opened with singing of God’s righteousness (137). Here, the poet drives the point home that God’s perfect, unending righteousness necessarily means that his Word is righteous.
The psalmist makes the point here that the righteousness of God’s Word is eternal. It is unchanging. The Word of God is right, true, pure, altogether good in every age, every nation, every culture. His Word is righteous.
Because the psalmist recognizes this, he again appeals to the Lord for understanding. There is an acknowledgment of his own weakness and own unrighteousness in his appeal. He knows that he is not righteous in his essence like the Lord is. So, he needs divine help in understanding the testimonies of the One who is truly righteous.
All of humanity shares this need with the psalmist. All of us are unrighteous. We need a righteousness not our own, and that can only come from God. We cannot even begin to fathom the goodness and beauty of the Lord apart from him granting us that understanding. May we ever recognize our need and be zealous in seeking him.
Righteous God and King, your Word is true, perfectly righteous, eternally just. Grant us understanding, O Lord. We are feeble and frail. Our best works are but filth before you. Be merciful, dear God, that we might worship you in spirit and in truth. Amen.