Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible. It is a beautiful Psalm whether you break it into small chunks or take the time to read it all the way through. The major theme of the Psalm is to remind us God’s word is wonderful and true. If we remain obedient to God we have the ability to achieve real happiness. Psalm 119:1-2 begins with 1 Blessed are they whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord. 2 Blessed are they who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart. If we remember the Bible is the only real source of truth, we will find everything we need to live a pure life. Everything else is opinion and ways people find to justify their sinful choices. Don’t be fooled.
When we acknowledge God as our true source of wisdom we become truly wise. Without God, our foundation is shaky and are likely to make mistakes and foolish choices. Psalm 111:10 says, The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To Him belongs eternal praise. “Fear” in this passage means reverence or respect for God’s authority. Too often people think they can gain wisdom from life experiences and academics alone. But without God’s wisdom in our lives, we skip an important step and fail to take advantage of the true source of all wisdom.
As we grow closer in our relationship with God, we learn to love what He loves and hate what He hates. Psalm 97:10 says, Let those who love the Lord hate evil, for he guards the lives of His faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Let us learn to love God’s ways and hate evil in every form just as He does.
Today is Good Friday and I always wondered why we refer to this day as “Good” since it was the day Jesus Christ was crucified on the cross. While historians debate many things about our faith, there are three things all historians agree on: 1) Jesus Christ really existed; 2) Jesus Christ was baptized; and 3) Jesus Christ was crucified. Christ’s crucifixion was an agonizing and torturous death. Matthew 27:50 says, And when Jesus cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. This was a brutal death and His suffering is hard to imagine. But when we take time to think through what Christ’s crucifixion represents and the transformation it has caused to the course of each of our lives, we realize it really was a “Good” day. Today reminds us that Jesus took on the sin of the world and died because of it. And more importantly, it is “Good” because Sunday is coming.
The author in today’s reading in Psalm asks a beautifully rhetorical question in Psalm 77:13 Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God? In the time when this Psalm was written, and no less so today, there were and are many things placed in higher regard than our God. But there is nothing greater or more important to our lives than our Almighty God. Take some time to try to find anything more steadfast or true… you won’t find anything. Not our friends, not our family, or organizations; nothing.
Psalm 10 is timely as we contemplate the direction of our country on this election day. It is times like these we question why the wicked always seem to succeed. The important thing to remember is God may seem to be hidden at times, but we can rest assured he is aware of every injustice. Psalm 10:16 says, The Lord is King for ever and ever; the nations will perish from his land. When evil succeeds it is always temporary. God’s justice will always prevail.
No one has perfect wisdom, but a wise man accepts instruction without being intimidated. Proverbs 9:9 says, Instruct a wise man and he will be wiser still; teach a righteous man and he will add to his learning. Those who are unable or unwilling to accept instruction only hurt and limited themselves.
It is foolish of us to think we can attain true wisdom without the knowledge of God. It is even more foolish to think we can attain knowledge outside of God’s influence in our lives. Proverbs 2:6 says, For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. Without knowledge and understanding we cannot have God’s wisdom. It is through our knowledge, understanding, and relationship with God that we have true wisdom and can apply it in our lives, and in the lives of others.
“The proof is in the pudding.” This is one of my favorite sayings. The truth finds it’s way to the surface based on the results of our actions. 1 John 1:6 says, If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. Our actions toward God are the proof of our love for Him. If we walk with Him, it will be apparent in all we do, say, and feel.
Since when do we as believers start bowing to the demands of our society? We are commanded to love others as Christ would love them, but we were not given the command to fit our beliefs into societal norms. As we begin Paul’s second letter to Timothy, we read in 2 Timothy 1:7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. There is nothing timid about our commands from Christ. He commanded us to love others and to boldly share His truths in that love. Christ is the savior of the world. There is nothing timid about that.