Addicted to the Word (Psalm 119.17-24)

1 06 2006

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The Psalmist is clearly a great model of dependence for believers of all ages. He prays for grace that he might obey (v.17) and he prays for illumination that he might see and understand the truth (v.18). I wonder how often we as his spiritual grandchildren follow after such wisdom.

How often do we hit our face and pray with passion that God would grant that we live in order to obey?!

(v. 17) Deal bountifully with Your servant, That I may live and keep Your word.

OR before cracking open our Bibles or while studying or sitting under the preaching of the word, how often do we pray as he:

(v.18) Open my eyes, that I may behold Wonderful things from Your law.

I will readily admit that I cannot identify with what he is praying in v. 20. I cannot recall a time when I have been “crushed with longing after” the divine ordinances.

(v.20) My soul is crushed with longing After Your ordinances at all times.

Sure there have been times that I have been particularly excited to study, teach, or sit under biblical teaching, but this is something more! The Psalmist is modeling sanctified behavior that is similar to what we see coming from an addict. These comparisons are obviously polemical in terms of what they are desiring, however, the posture of being “crushed with longing” is similar. It is like you could not take the Bible away from this guy. If you did get it away, he wouldn’t stop talking about it with you, and if you would not talk he would just meditate, and if he couldn’t meditate, he would just sit there and delight in the Law of God, even worshipping him in his own heart, overflowing with praise and thankfulness.

The word used here for crushed carries with it the concept of being disciplined. The soul of this man of God is so enthralled with the word that the deprivation of its utmost joy and value is soul crushing!

Perhaps if we prayed like the Psalmist for our eyes to be opened we would behold such wonderful things from the book and then be so enraptured by the divine realities?!

I love this great hymn book of revival because it is so necessary for my soul. It is so necessary to see man’s dependence and God’s greatness, to see the supremacy of the word of God as opposed to everything. It is necessary to see that it does indeed please God to have the whole soul of man pursuing and even panting for his character and testimonies as revealed through the word. God is pleased to allow his redeemed to join in the ceaseless and marvelous exaltation of Godhead! What grace, what a privelge, what joy awaits us in this stewardship of the sacred text of divine amplification.

Psalm 119:24 24 Your testimonies also are my delight; They are my counselors.

[As a church we are reading through the book of Psalms each Sunday morning. As a result Thursday postings will be geared toward a devotional look at the respective Psalm for each week in effort to kindle genuine affections in heart of the child of God through the word of God to the glory of God.]

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