Psalm 119 – Daleth

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Scripture Text – Psalm 119

The emphasis in this the longest psalm, and the basic theme, is on the vital ministry and practical use of the Word of God in the inner spiritual life of God’s children. It describes how the Word enables us to grow in holiness and handle the persecutions and pressures that always accompany an obedient walk of faith.

The Word of God performs many wonderful ministries in the life of the devoted believer. If we delight in His Word, learn it, treasure it within, and obey what it says, the Lord will work in us and through us to accomplish great things for His glory! Circumstances may change, but God and His Word remain the same.

Daleth – Down But Not Out

Please read Psalm 119:25-32 for the background to this section.

The previous section ended with the psalmist delighting in God’s Word, and this one opens with him down in the dust! The enemy attacks us the hardest when we are enjoying the blessings of God, and we must expect it. When things are going well and we “feel good,” it is dangerous to relax and lay aside the armor of God (Ephesians 6:10–18). “We must be as watchful after the victory as before the battle,” said Andrew Bonar, and he was right. When he found himself down, the psalmist knew what to do—he prayed!

“Revive me” (verse 25). See Psalm 143:11. His enemies were slandering his name, restricting him, lying about him, causing him to suffer and be despised, and even threatening his life, so it is no wonder that he felt like an insect in the dust. But when we seem to be at our worst, the Lord comes along with the very best and gives us the grace that we need (2 Corinthians 1:3–11; 12:1–10). The New International Version translates the Hebrew word in verse 25 to “preserve my life,” but much more is involved in this request. It involves saving his life, of course, but also invigorating him and breathing new life within him. He prayed this prayer often, and the Lord answered him each time.

et teach me

“Teach me” (verses 26–27). Too often we ask, “How can I get out of this trouble?” when we should be asking, “What can I get out of this experience?” In times of trouble, we need God’s wisdom lest we waste our suffering (James 1:2–8). The psalmist knew there were still lessons to learn in the school of life and he did not want to miss them. He talked to the Lord about what was happening to him, and the Lord answered by giving him wisdom and strength. By faith, he expected to see God’s wonders displayed in the midst of his battles.

“Strengthen me” (verses 28–30). Throughout the whole psalm, the writer makes it clear that he is suffering because of his commitment to God and His Word. He was actually risking his life to obey the Lord. Yet he did not rage against his enemies and seek to destroy them; rather, he wept over them and turned them over to God. All he wanted was strength to keep on living for the Lord and magnifying His Word. He discovered that God’s grace was indeed all that he needed (2 Corinthians 12:9). He would walk in the way of God’s truth and avoid the enemy’s way of deception. When we find ourselves pressured by the enemy, our first response is usually to pray that God will change them, when perhaps our best response would be that God would change us and enable us to overcome.

“Do not put me to shame” (verses 31–32). The writer did not want to bring shame to the name of the Lord, so he turned the situation over to Him by faith. If we think up clever schemes to defend ourselves and slander others, then the Lord will not be able to defend us (Romans 12:17–21). As we hold to His Word and trust His promises, the Lord is able to work in His way and in His time. Faith delivers us from the confinement of the enemy’s plots and sets us free to enjoy a larger place. He has gone from biting the dust to running freely in the way of the Lord! (See also Psalms 4:1 and 18:36).

To Be Continued

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Adapted and modified excerpts from Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Exultant, “Be” Commentary Series.
Unless otherwise noted, Scripture taken from the New King James Version®, NKJV © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

About Roland Ledoux

Pastor of Oasis Bible Ministry, an outreach ministry of teaching, encouragement and intercessory prayer from the Holy Bible, the written Word of God and author of the ministry website, For The Love of God. He lives in Delta, Colorado with his beautiful wife of 50+ years and a beautiful yellow lab whom they affectionately call Bella.
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