Studies in the Psalms I

I think it is a good time to begin studies in the book of Psalms. One of my favorite books of the Bible, Psalms is a collection of songs written long ago by numerous authors under inspiration of the Holy Spirit. One of my favorite psalms is also the longest @ 176 verses: Psalm 119. We will be embarking on a study of that psalm in a couple of weeks at our Friday night Bible study and I, for one, am very much looking forward to it.

This sacred ode is a little Bible, the Scriptures condensed, a mass of Bibline, Holy Writ rewritten in holy emotions and actions. Blessed are they who can read and understand these saintly aphorisms; they shall find golden apples in this true Hesperides, and come to reckon that this Psalm, like the whole Scripture which it praises, is a pearl island, or, better still, a garden of sweet flowers. –Spurgeon

Let’s begin at the beginning of that Psalm: Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways. Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. –Psalm 119:1-4

Blessed are the undefiled in the way (perfect, blameless or sincere). I think sincere is a good way to render it, since we know none of us are perfect in this world, although we are before God – thanks to Jesus. Any perfection or purity that we have comes strictly by Divine Grace. God wants to share His blessedness with us. (See also Psalm 128:1).

It’s “all or nothing” with the Lord. We cannot serve both God and mammon (Matthew 6:24). How often can we say that we seek Him with our whole heart? Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God. -1 John 3:9 (NLT) We must make religion our rule, looking to God for wisdom and grace to do so. We must make the effort to live as people who love His law. As Christians, we love Jesus and should therefore wish to study His Word and aspire to keep the law as the best way to live. We should have no shame for making every effort to live as Christ would have us do. God’s precepts require careful obedience: there is no keeping them by accident. –C.H. Spurgeon. There are no ‘ifs, ands or buts’ about it: God commands us to strive for holiness in our daily walk with Him. We are to keep his precepts (laws) diligently. Another word for diligently (KJV) might be carefully. Great care must be taken to read, understand and apply God’s law in our lives as best we can.

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