Click here for today’s reading http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm%20119:%201-88&version=NIV
Today, is DAY 150 of our reading together!!! HOW COOL IS THAT!!!???? IN 32.5 more days we will have been on this journey for half of the year!! AWESOME!!
This Psalm is both the longest Psalm and the longest chapter in the Bible. By comparison two days ago we read Psalm 117 which was the shortest chapter in the bible. This Psalm has 22 carefully constructed sections/stanzas and each stanza has eight lines. It is known as an Acrostic or Alphabetical Psalm. Each section corresponds to a different letter in the Hebrew alphabet, in sequence, and each verse in the original Hebrew began with the letter of its section. If you notice the headings between every 8 lines you will see Aleph, Beth, Gimel, Daleth, etc., those words represent ONE Hebrew “letter” of their alphabet. In the original Hebrew the same alphabetical letter that started off that stanza was also the beginning letter of that stanza. Each Hebrew letter had several characters with deep meanings. In addition to their language meanings they also had numeric meanings…but I can’t read Hebrew…so it really is all “Greek” to me (<<<smile>>>.) On a serious note, I WISH I could read the Hebrew because each time I learn the meanings of some of the original words….letter for letter….(character by character)…it is so DEEP. There are MANY of their letters and words simply can not be translated into just ONE into English…..it gets deep!! One version of the Bible that I will use from time to time is the Amplified version. If you get a chance take a look at it because it give you the scripture and then in parenthesis list several other words to help deepen the original meaning. Each time I learn the meaning of a Hebrew word it is another way God reveals even more of HIMself to me. It is almost like putting a secret puzzle together that God reveals peace by peace (I meant to type peace that way!!)
The Israelites did not have personal copies of God’s Word. They MEMORIZED EVERY verse and passed it down orally from generation to generation. The use of the Hebrew letters helped them in memorizing the Word.
The theme of this Psalm is that God’s Word is true forever. The focus is on the good life we can enjoy when we desire God with ALL our heart which means we also desire to be obedient to HIM. It is all about a deep rooted Reverence for God.
The author of this Psalm is said to be anonymous but some suggest Ezra the priest wrote it after the temple was rebuilt.
The purpose of this Psalm is to be a PERSONAL meditation on God’s Word…. PERSONAL. So you might find it most beneficial if you decide to read this one OUT LOUD. I am serious. Allow the Words to speak to you personally and share with me what stood out the most to you. I’d love to hear.
There are 176 verses, and EVERY verse (except 4) mentions God under one of 10 different names. He is called: law, statutes, decrees, commands, precepts, word, ways (paths), decrees, promised and judgements. Think about God’s character through what HE is called.
The author of this Psalm is suggested to be Ezra, and written after the temple was rebuilt.
Verse 9 asks the BIG question behind the Psalm– “HOW can a young man keep his way pure?” And directly following it, we are given the answer— “BY LIVING ACCORDING TO YOUR WORD.”
Verse 11– “I have hidden YOUR Word in my heart that I might not sin against YOU.”
Now those are some words to live by!!
Some things I noticed in our reading today was how often the following words were repeated in the NIV…..” ALL their heart….teach…rejoice…meditate…” Some great guidelines in keeping ourselves close to HIM.
The two verses that touched me deeply were verse 50: “My comfort in my suffering is this: YOUR promise preserves my life.” AND verse 71: “It is good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn YOUR decrees.” These spoke very loudly to me because it usually is in our pain and trials that we allow ourselves to receive more of God. We recognize we simply do not have most the answers BUT we KNOW who does. Our “suffering” and our “afflictions” tend to place us in a position of depending on exactly what God says, desiring to know HIM more and more, and giving our hearts totally to HIM because we KNOW we do not have the strength or courage without HIM to live a joyful life…..in whatever circumstances we are in.
What struck you today? I’d love to hear from you.
Sharing HIS love,