Lesson #5 Preview

This morning I am reviewing all of our verses for this session - Psalms 119:97-120

Summary of our lesson as follows: (Easy to remember when shortened into small bites)

I love Gods Word

I think upon them daily

You are my constant guide

Make me wise

I will remain obedient

Your word is sweeter than honey

You give me understanding

You are a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path

Accept my Praise

Teach Me

Your law is my treasure

I will be determined to the end!

You are my refuge and my shield

You are my hope

I am in awe of you

AMEN.

Psalms 119 - Lesson #5 How to obtain Understanding

Today is a bit lengthy - we had to go to the commentary and copy and pasted what it had to say, awesome eye openers. Must read when you have aboutr 10-15 minutes, God will honor your time. Blessins' - bfc 

Psalms 119:97-101

“How to get more understanding”

97 Oh, how I love your law!  I meditate on it all day long. 98 Your commands are always with me and make me wiser than my enemies.
99 I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes. 100 I have more understanding than the elders, for I obey your precepts. 101 I have kept my feet from every evil path
    so that I might obey your word.  (24/7 Battlefield!) 

I’m going to have to look into a commentary on this one; the author sounds a little “proud” to me. If I meditate on the Word and I am open to listen and act upon what some of the Godly teachers share with me, that tells me I have room to grow and I don’t know more than my teachers or elders.

The following commentary is so clear and concise as to what the writer is saying, it totally clarifies any questions or misunderstandings I had when I “first read these verses”. Thankful!!

This study shows me, that when I don’t understand something in the Bible, I really need to stop and search the real meaning of what the Holy Spirit is telling me through His Word.

It’s possible to “misinterpret” the word if you are new in your relationship with Jesus, thank God for Godly teachers and commentaries to help us.  We are to seek wisdom from these sources, then pray as we learn and ask the Holy Spirit for His wisdom as to what He is saying to us.

Commentary Notes from Internet:

 (98-100) God’s word gives great wisdom.

You, through your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies; for they are ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers, For Your testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep your precepts. a. You, through your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies:

 The Psalmist had many enemies, some of them evil and some proud. Perhaps the proud ones boasted that they were wiser or more educated than the writer of the Psalm. Yet the writer was confident that God’s word had given him greater wisdom. 

  1. In these verses, we see that the Psalmist is wiser and has more understanding than his enemies (Psalm 119:98), his teachers (Psalm 119:99), and the ancients (Psalm 119:100).******** “The comparison is not a prideful assertion of superiority, but a form of exultation in the Lord himself, whose wisdom is more direct and superior.” (VanGemeren)

b. For they are ever with me: The Psalmist was real about the abiding presence of his enemies. They were with him ever, and he had to gain enough spiritual strength and enough strength of character to survive and even thrive with them with him.

 

c. I have more understanding than all my teachers, for your testimonies are my meditation: Here the Psalmist explained why he was wiser than his enemies. He even had more understanding than all his teachers (who, we hope were not the same as his previously mentioned enemies), because of his serious study and meditation on God’s word. 

  1. This verse teaches us that it is vitally important to have understanding, even great understanding. We know this because of the value the Psalmist places on having more understanding

ii. This verse teaches us that it is not wrong or bad to have teachers, because the Psalmist indeed had (either now or in the past) teachers who taught him about life and God’s word. This verse is not a renunciation of those teachers. 

iii. ***********This verse teaches us that our understanding of God’s word and ways is not limited to what we receive from our teachers. That is, it teaches us that we can learn from our own study and meditation; that teachers are often helpful but not absolutely necessary. Understanding is necessary; teachers may or may not be. 

***********iv. This verse teaches us that this understanding does not come easily; true meditation involves some element of work. It requires the ability to stay focused and the necessary tools for Biblical understanding and analysis. 

v.************* This principle has been proven in the lives of God’s servants again and again. The Bible tells us of men who were not educated by the world’s standards (such as the disciples, as in Acts 4:13) yet they had great understanding and were effective in serving God.

vi. This principle has also been proven in the lives of God’s servants since Bible times. Notable examples include Charles Spurgeon, D.L. Moody, William Carey, D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Hudson Taylor.

vii. It is helpful to remember that God has used many who were greatly educated. Moses, Daniel, and Paul are all Biblical examples. Augustine, Luther, and Graham are just a few historical examples. It’s just as wrong to think that formal education disqualifies someone for as it is to think that it automatically qualifies someone for effective service.

viii. “We may hear the wisest teachers and remain fools, but if we meditate upon the sacred word we must become wise. There is more wisdom in the testimonies of the Lord than in all the teachings of men if they were all gathered into one vast library. The one book outweighs all the rest.” (Spurgeon)

ix. “It is no reflection upon my teachers, but rather an honor to them, for me to improve so as to excel them, and no longer to need them.” (Matthew Henry, cited in Spurgeon)

d. I understand more than the ancients, because I keep your precepts: The Psalmist was even bolder than just saying that God’s word had given him an education greater than his teachers. Now he says “I understand more than the ancients.”

i. “He understands more than the aged, that is, the direct keeping of the Divine precepts is of more value than the advice of others, even though they have had long experience.” (Morgan)

ii. This is particularly meaningful when we realize how highly regarded the wisdom of the ancients was in that day and culture. In the modern world it is all too common to disregard the wisdom and understanding of the ancients, but not in the Psalmist’s time. 

iii. This also tells us that while we should in general respect the understanding and wisdom of the ancients (which the Psalmist surely did, in general), we are not slaves to their wisdom and understanding. ***********Our rule for faith and doctrine and living is the Bible itself, not the understanding or interpretation of it from even the great men of history.

iv. “The ancients are had in high repute, but what did they all know compared with that which we perceive in the divine precepts? ‘The old is better’ says one: but the oldest of all is the best of all, and what is that but the word of the Ancient of days.” (Spurgeon) 

v. Boice tells a story about the life of Harry Ironside, the pastor and author and Bible commentator. Ironside went to visit a man near death, suffering from tuberculosis. The man was almost dead and could barely speak. As Ironside spoke to him he asked, “Young man, are you trying to preach Christ, are you not?” Ironside said that he was, and the man replied: “Well, sit down a little, and let us talk together about the Word of God.” Then the man opened his Bible and spoke with Ironside until his strength was gone; he shared insights from the Bible that Ironside had not appreciated or even seen before. Ironside was stunned, and he asked the man: “Where did you get these things? Can you tell me where I can find a book that will open them up to me? Did you get them in seminary or college?” The old man replied: “My dear young man, I learned these things on my knees on the mud floor of a little sod cottage in the north of Ireland. There with my open Bible before me, I used to kneel for hours at a time and ask the Spirit of God to reveal Christ to my soul and to open the Word to my heart. He taught me more on my knees on that mud floor than I ever could have learned in all the seminaries or colleges in the world.”

3. (101-102) The word of God keeps one from evil.

I have restrained my feet from every evil way, That I may keep Your word. I have not departed from your judgments, For You Yourself have taught me. 

a. I have restrained my feet from every evil way, that I may keep your word: The Psalmist understood that restraining himself from evil would also help him to understand God’s word better. He could better keep God’s word by keeping from every evil way.

i. “There is no treasuring up the holy word unless there is a casting out of all ungodliness: if we keep the good word we must let go the evil.” (Spurgeon)

b. I have not departed from your judgments, for you Yourself have taught me: The personal connection the Psalmist had with God through His word encouraged a faithful walk.

i. This also demonstrates that God can teach the believer through His word in a direct sense – You yourself have taught me. This does not mean that everything one comes to through self-study is correct or from God, and it does not eliminate the need for Bible teachers. Yet it does fulfill what Jesus later said in John 16:13:When He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth.

ii. You Yourself have taught me: “The word thou [You] is emphatic. Here is the guarantor of biblical truth, and the One who alone opens the disciple’s eyes to see it.” (Kidner)

4. (103-104) The sweet understanding from the word of God.

How sweet are your words to my taste, Sweeter than honey to my mouth! Through Your precepts I understand; therefore I hate every false way. a. How sweet are your words to my taste

The Psalmist felt the word of God was as pleasant to him as sweet things – even sweeter than honey!************ Time spent in God’s word was not an unpleasant duty; it was a sweet experience to be thankful for.

i. How sweet: “He expresses the fact of their sweetness, but as he cannot express the degree of their sweetness he cries, ‘How sweet!’” (Spurgeon) In comparison, the Psalmist had very little of God’s word – perhaps just the five Books of Moses and a few books more. We have so much more riches and sweetness in the word of God than he did; yet most of us seem to value it less.

ii. “The study and obedience of thy words yields me more satisfaction and delight than any worldly men find in their sensual pleasures.” (Poole)

iii. ************The Bible is filled with passage after passage that anyone with spiritual sensitivity would find sweet. Passages like Psalm 23:1-3Psalm 8:1John 3:16Romans 8:28, or Revelation 22:20 are just a beginning. “If you can’t find anything beautiful or sweet in these verses, your taste bids are terribly dulled and your eyes horribly glazed by the tawdry glitz of our culture.” (Boice)

iv. “For what argument could ever persuade us that honey is bitter, at the moment we are tasting its sweetness?” (Bridges)

v. “If the word of God be not very sweet to me, have I an appetite? Solomon says, ‘The full soul loatheth an honeycomb; but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.’ Ah, when a soul is full of itself, and of the world, and of the pleasures of sin, I do not wonder that it sees no sweetness in Christ, for it has no appetite!” (Spurgeon) 

vi. “It is a blessed sign of grace in the heart when God’s words are sweet to us as a whole, — when we love the truth, not cast into a system or a shape, but as we find it in God’s Word. I believe that no man who has yet lived has ever proposed a system of theology which comprises all the truth of God’s Word. If such a system had been possible, the discovery of it would have been made for us by God himself: — certainly it would if it had been desirable and useful for our profit and holiness. But it has not pleased God to give us a body of divinity; let us receive it as he has given it, each truth in its own proportion, — each doctrine in harmony with its fellow, — each precept carefully carried out into practice, and each promise to be believed, and by-and-by received. Let the truth, and the whole truth, be sweet to our taste.” (Spurgeon)

b. Through Your precepts I get understanding; therefore I hate every false way: The understanding gained by the Psalmist gave him discernment and courage; the ability to perceive and hate every false way.

i. Notably, the psalmist began this section with love; he ends it with hate. “The Christian life is not all sweetness . . . It has its sweet moments, and there is incomparable beauty in God. But we still live in a sour, ugly world, and it is equally important to learn to hate evil as well as love the good.” (Boice)

N. Nun: Never-Ending Confidence in God’s Word. 

1. (105) The illuminating guidance of God’s word.

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. a. Your word is a lamp to my feet: The Psalmist felt that as he walked the road of life, the word of God made his steps clear. He would not know where to step without the guidance of God’s word.

i. It is possible to walk the path of life not knowing where our steps fall. To use the analogy, we don’t know if our foot will step on good ground or dangerous ground; we are not self-aware. God’s word will be a lamp to our feet.

ii. Simply said, the Bible should help us walk the way God wants us to walk. Think of all the different words we use to describe how a person walks: stroll, saunter, amble, trudge, plod, dawdle, hike, tramp, tromp, slog, stomp, march, stride, sashay, glide, troop, patrol, wander, ramble, tread, prowl, promenade, roam, traipse, mosey, and perambulate. The different words show that there are many different ways to walk, and each of them says something. 

iii. How are Christians to walk?

· Worthy (Ephesians 4:1)

· Uprightly (Isaiah 57:2)

· In the light (1 John 1:7)

· Humbly (Micah 6:8)

None of these are possible without the word of God lighting our way.

iv. The picture of a lamp says something. “Thus is our passage in a dark and perilous way irradiated by thelamp and light of the word. But except the lamp be lighted – except the teaching of the Spirit accompany the word, all is darkness – thick darkness. Let us not be content to read the word without obtaining some lightfrom it in our understanding.” (Bridges)

b. A light to my path: The word of God not only showed him where his feet stepped, but also the path he should remain upon. It showed him the next few steps to take.

i. We need the Bible to teach us right from wrong. We certainly do have some inner sense of this in our conscience; but our conscience can be weak, ignorant, or damaged. The word of God is higher even than our conscience, and it teaches our conscience.

ii. “This is not convenient guidance for one’s career, but truth for moral choices; see, for example, the kind of ‘snare’ and ‘straying’ that are implied in 119:110.” (Kidner)

iii. “One of the most practical benefits of Holy Writ is guidance in the acts of daily life; it is not sent to astound us with its brilliance, but to guide us by its instruction.” (Spurgeon)

c. **************Your word is a lamp . . . and a light: These pictures show us that the word of God is light and brings light; it doesn’t make things darker or harder to understand. It is a light book, not a dark book.

i. “This stanza emphasizes the clarity of Scripture, the attribute of the Bible that meant so much to the Protestant Reformers, who also called it perspicuity. What they meant by clarity of perspicuity is that the Bible is basically comprehensible to any open-minded person who reads it.” (Boice)

ii. Not all parts are equally clear and easy to understand; and it is helpful to have wisdom from others in what they have seen in the Scriptures. Yet at its core, the Bible can be understood, and Christians do understand it. Think of all the common ground Christians, even of greatly different denominations, have together:

Psalms 119 - Lesson #5 - Jesus is my Sweet Teacher"

Psalms 119: 102-104

“Jesus is my Sweet Teacher!”

 

102 I have not departed from your laws, for you yourself have taught me. 103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! 104 I gain understanding from your precepts;   therefore I hate every wrong path.

Thank you Jesus!!!!

Today, as I sit down to pick up on our lesson again, I am so excited! My journey right now involves a walk with Dr. Leaf = 21 Day Brain Detox AND working on controlling my eating habits again. Father, you are so good, everything falls in place and works together for my good.

I have been working on two programs and been posting them on our Salt Shakin Sister Simplesite, if you want to check it out go to the tab in this website  and check it out in detailed format:  click on the 21 Day Brain Detox tab at the top of the menu.

102 I have not departed from your laws, for you yourself have taught me. 103 How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth! 104 I gain understanding from your precepts;   therefore I hate every wrong path.

I strive each and every “new day” to follow Gods word and what He continually teaches me. When I depart, and don’t follow His promptings and teachings, I am the one that suffers for it, and it grieves the Holy Spirit of God.

I am also thankful God is big enough to forgive me of sin in my life, also thankful that God does NOT get mad at us, that is a lie from satan, please remember that today ladies. God help us to be merciful and forgiving of others, as you do with us every hour of the day.

His Word tells us that His words are sweeter than honey in our mouths. On this 21 Day Brain Detox I am walking through with Dr. Leaf, she shares how our thoughts are compared to a dead tree and luscious green trees. This is NOT positive thinking; Gods word is shared all through this teaching.

In addition to this part of my journey, I am learning to eat better again, and to do that, I must get radical about my eating habits and for about 2 months, my eating will be very strict. My sweet honey won’t be the actual honey from the bees, but honey and helps me from Gods Word and time I spend with Jesus, getting the fruit of the Holy Spirit – Self Control. I love Gods HONEY!

I win, I gain understanding through obedience and Godly instruction – I hate when I fail! But you know what – I get back up, brush myself off and go at it again, afresh and new with the power of the Holy Spirit of God within me! Thankful and Amen.

Psalms 119 - Lesson #5- “Your Word is a Lamp Unto My Path”

He is a lamp unto my feet and lights my path way. Thank You Jesus

Psalms 119: 105-108

 “Your Word is a Lamp Unto My Path”

 105 Your word is a lamp for my feet,  light on my path.106 I have taken an oath and confirmed it, that I will follow your righteous laws. 107 I have suffered much; preserve my life, Lord, according to your word. 108 Accept, Lord, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws. 

“Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path”. This is a short and simple portion of a verse; I often hear myself say it when I leave early in the mornings headed to work, as I climb down my front door steps.

“I have taken an oath and confirmed it, that I will follow your righteous laws”. What is an oath? Without going to the dictionary this morning, my interpretation of the word OATH would be a promise or a statement of my faith that I will strive to accomplish a certain task or journey.

My oath to Jesus is that I love Him and want so much to be like Him, and knowing that I will fall short of this, He helps me one day at a time, step by step, and gives me plenty of grace and mercy along my lighted pathway. When I accepted Jesus into my heart, my life changed and will never be the same again, old things are passed away and all things become new. As I grow older and my relationship grows stronger and better every day. Thankful!!!

“Preserve my life, Lord, according to your word. 108 Accept, Lord, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws”.

  What does preserve mean?

Preserve means =

1. Keep or maintain in unaltered condition; cause to remain or last.
2. Keep in safety and protect from harm, decay, loss, or destruction.
3. Maintain in safety from injury, harm, or danger. 

My Father preserves my life according to His word – He keeps me safe from harm and danger. I bank on this every day when I leave my home and head out to work when I have to drive in  San Antonio traffic and all the road construction!

Your safety may be totally different than mine, but the same Jesus and the same protection, as God is so big to preserve us all. When I think of the word preserve - remain or last = I am also reminded of that fact that I am Heaven bound, eternal preservation.

 Having shared all this, the next portion of the verse is easy to do – I will praise Him with my mouth and thank Him for what He teaches me through His Word and Holy Spirit. Thank You Father!

“My heart is set on keeping your decrees” #5

Psalms 119:109-112

“My heart is set on keeping your decrees”

 

109 Though I constantly take my life in my hands, I will not forget your law. 110 The wicked have set a snare for me, but I have not strayed from your precepts. 111 Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart. 112 My heart is set on keeping your decrees to the very end.

  • I constantly take my life in my hands 
  • I will not forget your law
  • I have not strayed from your precepts
  • Your statutes are my heritage forever
  • Your words are the joy of my heart
  • My heart is set on keeping your decrees to the very end.

Matthew Henry Commentary says:

Here is, 1. David in danger of losing his life. There is but a step between him and death, for the wicked have laid a snare for him; Saul did so many a time, because he hated him for his piety. Wherever he was he found some design or other laid against him to take away his life, for it was that they aimed at. What they could not effect by open force they hoped to compass by treachery, which made him say, My soul is continually in my hand. It was so with him, not only as a man (so it is true of us all; wherever we are we lie exposed to the strokes of death.

What we carry in our hands is easily snatched away from us by violence, or if sandy, as our life is, it easily of itself slips through our fingers), but as a man of war, a soldier, who often jeoparded his life in the high places of the field, and especially as a man after God's own heart, and, as such, hated and persecuted, and always delivered to death (2 Cor 4:11), killed all the day long. 2. David in no danger of losing his religion, notwithstanding this, thus in jeopardy every hour and yet constant to God and his duty.

None of these things move him; for, (1.) He does not forget the law, and therefore he is likely to persevere. In the multitude of his cares for his own safety he finds room in his head and heart for the word of God, and has that in his mind as fresh as ever; and where that dwells richly it will be a well of living water. (2.) He has not yet erred from God's precepts, and therefore it is to be hoped he will not. He had stood many a shock and kept his ground, and surely that grace which had helped him hitherto would not fail him, but would still prevent his wanderings. 

Ps 119:111-112

111 Thy testimonies have I taken as a heritage forever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart. 112 I have inclined mine heart to perform thy statutes always, even unto the end. The psalmist here in a most affectionate manner, like an Israelite indeed, resolves to stick to the word of God and to live and die by it.

I. He resolves to portion himself in it, and there to seek his happiness, nay, there to enjoy it; "Thy testimonies (the truths, the promises, of thy word) have I taken as a heritage forever, for they are the rejoicing of my heart." The present delight he took in them was an evidence that the good things contained in them were in his account the best things, and the treasure which he set his heart upon. 1. He expected an eternal happiness in God's testimonies. The covenant God had made with him was an everlasting covenant, and therefore he took it as a heritage forever.

If he could not yet say, "They are my heritage," yet he could say, "I have made choice of them for my heritage; and will never take up with a portion in this life," Ps 17:14,15. God's testimonies are a heritage to all that have received the Spirit of adoption; for, if children, then heirs. They are a heritage forever, and that no earthly heritage is (1 Peter 1:4); all the saints accept them as such, take up with them, live upon them, and can therefore be content with but little of this world.

2. He enjoyed a present satisfaction in them: They are the rejoicing of my heart, because they will be my heritage forever. It requires the heart of a good man to see his portion in the promise of God and not in the possessions of this world.

II. He resolves to govern himself by it and thence to take his measures: I have inclined my heart to do thy statutes. Those that would have the blessings of God's testimonies must come under the bonds of his statutes. We must look for comfort only in the way of duty, and that duty must be done,

1. With full consent and complacency: "I have, by the grace of God, inclined my heart to it, and conquered the aversion I had to it." A good man brings his heart to his work and then it is done well. A gracious disposition to do the will of God is the acceptable principle of all obedience. 2. With constancy and perseverance. He would perform God's statutes always, in all instances, in the duty of every day, in a constant course of holy walking, and this to the end, without weariness. This is following the Lord fully. 

  • I constantly take my life in my hands 
  • I will not forget your law-

When I first read this, I had some initial thoughts, then as I kept reading it, I felt a need to see what the commentary had to say as David was sharing from his heart; what I was personally receiving was different than what the Psalmist was saying (bfc-personal Life Application Studies).

My response to the portion of scripture that said;” I constantly take my life in my hands, but I will not forget your law (word of God, Bible) was this: 

I see a constant battle in my heart and mind daily, as I strive to serve my Jesus, but oftentimes I will take matters into my own hands and do things “my way” instead of God’s way – choose not to listen and obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit of God within me. Even though I may choose to follow my feelings instead of God, I never forget His Word and appreciate the nudging and grace of the Holy Spirit.

Note: Who wrote the book of Psalms? King David, Moses, Heman the Ezrhaite, Ethan the Ezrhaite, King Solomon, Asaph and the sons of Korah are named as authors of many of the Psalms. Several of the Psalms are not attributed to a writer.

David is the writer of this Psalms and Saul is always after him, he hated him and wanted him dead! Therefore, we can fully understand the next portion of this verse: 110 The wicked have set a snare for me!  Do you have those days when you feel like everyone is out to get you and you don’t have a friend in the world? This portion of the verse would feel applicable wouldn’t you agree?

  • I have not strayed from your precepts
  • Your statutes are my heritage forever
  • Your words are the joy of my heart
  • My heart is set on keeping your decrees to the very end.

These verses are my heart’s desire, how about you?

Psalms 119 - Week # 5

Psalms 119: 113-115

“How to see your “image” as Jesus sees it”

 

113 I hate double-minded people, but I love your law. 114 You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.115 Away from me, you evildoers, I may keep the commands of my God!

 Come Back later for the rest of our study.

Have a great day!! 

bfc