On Death and Resurrection in Christ

 

Yesterday I was crucified with Him; today I am glorified with Him.

Yesterday I died with Him; today I am made alive with Him.

Yesterday I was crucified with Him; today I am glorified with Him.

Yesterday I died with Him; today I am made alive with Him.

Yesterday I was buried with Him; today I am raised up with Him.

Let us offer to Him Who suffered and rose again for us . . . ourselves, the possession most precious to God and most proper.

Let us become like Christ, since Christ became like us.

Let us become Divine for His sake, since for us He became Man.

He assumed the worse that He might give us the better.

He became poor that by His poverty we might become rich.

He accepted the form of a servant that we might win back our freedom.

He came down that we might be lifted up.

He was tempted that through Him we might conquer.

He was dishonored that He might glorify us.

He died that He might save us.

He ascended that He might draw to Himself us, who were thrown down through the fall of sin.

Let us give all, offer all, to Him who gave Himself a Ransom and Reconciliation for us.

We needed an incarnate God, a God put to death, that we might live.

We were put to death together with Him that we might be cleansed.

We rose again with Him because we were put to death with Him.

We were glorified with Him because we rose again with Him.

A few drops of Blood recreate the whole of creation!

—St Gregory the Theologian, Easter Orations


Blessed be the Lord!

 

Blessed be the Lord, Jesus Christ!

He is the creative force in all artists.

He is the mainstay of all music.

He is the strength of all workers.

He is the justice of all good people.

He is the care of all health care workers.

He is the wisdom of righteous solutions.

He is the colour of all painting.

He is the life of every sculpture.

He is the web of life in all societies.

He is the way of life of all that is good.

He is the life of all that exists.

He is who he is.

He is the self-existent I AM.

Blessed be the Lord!


Eg har villa meg bort, men ikkje gløymd dine bod

Salme 119,176 Eg har villa meg bort som ein bortkomen sau. Leit etter meg, din tenar, eg har ikkje gløymt dine bod.

Dette er punktum finale, den endelege konklusjonen på denne lange bønnesalmen på 176 vers. Eg har villa meg bort. Eg er som ein hjelpelaus og bortkomen sau. Eg treng hjelp. Leit etter meg og gje meg ikkje opp. For ei audmjuk avslutning. For ei djup sjølvinnsikt. David har tidegare kome med mange frimodige utsegn. Han har sett ord på sine gode ønskje og intensjonar. Frimodig har han sagt kva han vil følgja Guds lover og påbod. Så avsluttar han med å seia at gode intensjonar er ikkje nok. Det er lettare å seia kva vi trur og ønskjer enn å leva etter Guds ord.

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Lat meg få leva fullt ut!

Salme 119,175 Lat meg leva og lovsyngja deg, lat dine lover vera mi hjelp!

Lat meg få leva! For ei universell og enkel bønn. Lat meg få leva livet fullt ut er vel det innarste ønskje til alle menneske. Vi ønskjer jo alle eit godt og meiningsfullt liv. Vi ser dei øydeleggjande dødskreftene verksame rundt oss. Det er så mykje liding i denne verda som er merka av synd. Difor ber vi at Livsens Ande skal fylla oss med sitt overflodsliv så det kan renna elvar av liv frå oss til andre. Det verkeleg gode livet er å kjenna Gud, det er å bli ein ny skapning ved trua på Jesus Kristus, Guds Son. Med hans liv på innsida kan vi møta det vonde og vanskelege med tru og håp.

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Frelse i fortid, notid og framtid

Salme 119,174 Herre, eg lengtar etter di frelse, eg frydar meg over di lov (Strong 8451).

Frelse er eit vedunderleg ord som skaper gode tankar og kjensler i oss som trur. Vi har fått del i Guds frelse og vi lengtar etter henne. Ved trua har vi vorte frelst ein gong for alle, men opplever å bli frelst meir og meir gjennom heile livet. Ein gong i framtida skal vi få del i Guds frelse heilt og fullt. Det er dette perspektivet vi finn i det David seier i denne bønna si. Den frelse vi har opplevd skaper lengt etter den fullkomne og endelege frelsa som ventar på oss.

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Lat di hand koma meg til hjelp!

Salme 119,173 Lat di hand koma meg til hjelp, for eg har valt dine påbod (6490).

På ny ber David ei enkel bønn som vi alle kan be: Lat di hand koma meg til hjelp! Eit av kjenneteikna på ekte bønner er at dei er enkle og rett fram, utan snikk snakk. Bønner som kjem frå hjartet treng ikkje pyntast med store og overtalande ord. Eit enkelt sukk om hjelp er nok til å røra ved Guds hjarte.

Legg merke til at David seier, lat di hand koma meg til hjelp. Han ber om Guds direkte inngrep. Han ser ikkje til venner eller folk med pengar og makt, nei, han vender seg berre til Gud og set si von til han åleine. Lat di hand, som både har makt og styrke til å gjera under, koma meg til hjelp. Lat di hand, som skapte himmel og jord, gripa inn i min kvardag. Lat di skapande kunstnar hand gjera under i livet mitt!

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Syng ut Guds rettferdige bod!

Salme 119,172 Lat tunga syngja ut ditt ord, for alle dine bod er rettferdige.

Her går David frå å lovsyngja Gud til å syngja ut Guds ord. Gud har lært han sine forskrifter og no vil han gjera desse kjende for alle folk. Han vil få ut Guds ord til andre. Vi kan både preika og forkynna, tala og syngja ut Guds ord. Poenget er at vi bruker tunga vår til å gjera Guds ord kjend. Når Gud lærer oss sine forskrifter er det vårt naturlege gjensvar at vi taler og syng ut Guds ord til folk rundt oss.

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Eg vil lovsyngja Gud som lærer meg sine forskrifter

Salme 119,171 Lat leppene strøyma over av lovsong, for du lærer meg dine forskrifter.

Bønn og lovprising høyrer saman. Dei som ber får svar og har mykje å takka for. Fellesskapet med Gud i bønn følgjer oss gjennom dagen og varer livet ut. Lovsong er ein svært viktig del av dette bønnefellesskapet med Gud. Dei fleste av oss har meir å takka for enn å be om. Det oppdagar vi fort når vi tek til å takka for dei daglege velsigningane i livet. Det er lett å ta ting for sjølvsagt, det at vi har mat og klede, hus og heim og liknande, men vi må ikkje gløyma at alt dette er ei gåve frå Gud. I verda er det mykje fattigdom og liding på grunn av krig, naturkatastrofer og urettferdig samfunnssystem eller politikk. Alle som lever i Noreg er priveligert og har svært mykje å takka for.

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To be somebody is not to worry about anything

To be somebody is to be worry-free
Not worrying for eating or drinking
Not worrying for housing or clothing
Not worrying for the day tomorrow
Not worrying for my good name
Not worrying for my acceptance in society
Not worrying for my appearance
Not worrying for my beauty
Not worrying for my professional career
Not worrying for my funeral
Not worrying for my car
Nor worrying for my possessions
Nor worrying for my children
Not worrying for accidents while travelling
Not worrying for terrorists
Not worrying for the persecutors
Not worrying for ridicule
Not worrying for rejection

I am really somebody
When I live worry-free
In the middle of difficulties
In the face of challenges

I am really somebody
When I generously give away everything
To follow in the footsteps
Of him who had no pillow to rest his head on


Humble praying

To be somebody is to humbly pray

For wisdom and insight for righteous living

To ask for blessing on your friends

And pronounce blessing on those who oppose you

As you humbly yourself

Asking for daily grace and abundant mercy


I want to lay hold on the word!

Psalm 119.48 I will lift up my hands toward your commandments, which I love, and I will meditate on your statutes.

It may be a little unclear as to David's intention to raise his hands towards God's commandments, but I think it's about raising his hands to grasp the word of God. He says he loves God and wants to reflect on God's precepts. That is why he wants to raise his hands to lay hold on the word of God and not let it go. He loves God and will meditate on the word to understand God's plan and will.

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Passion and delight in the Word of God

Psalm 119.47 for I find my delight in your commandments, which I love. 

I am so excited by the joy David finds in God's commandments. "I delight in your commandments." He finds joy and delight in God's law. In fact, it can be translated with: "I am entertaining me in your commands!" When many hear words like commandments, laws, rules, they respond negatively. Very many want to cast it in the sea and get rid of them, because they want to be free to follow their own sinful heart.

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I will not be ashamed of the word of God or His good arrangements!

Psalm 119.46 I will also speak of your testimonies before kings and shall not be put to shame, 

It is a bold David we meet in this words. But it is not wishful thinking he expresses. Before he was king, he was both bold and preached the word of God to King Ashish and Saul. After becoming king, he continued to speak to kings about God's testimony and law. He did not hide what he believed in and whom had his loyalty.

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I want to live in complete freedom!

Psalm 119.45 and I shall walk in a wide place, for I have sought your precepts.

When David has stated that he will always, at every moment, follow the law of God, he continues in this verse with a prayer to walk in an open landscape. I was born and raised in Jæren, at the south western coast of Norway, and I love open landscapes. At Jæren I can breathe freely. I am not created for trong fjords or valleys or deep forests. I have to have a view, preferably see water, to thrive. Tronge landscape depress me because I feel I'm trapped. For this reason, I have asked many times to get out into a wide and open place so that I can live and breathe freely.

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I will keep your law continually

Psalm 119.44 I will keep your law continually, forever and ever, 

In trusting that God answers and shows his faithful love, David comes with a bold promise. "I will always keep your law!" These are strong words, but it is a attitude that the Lord reewards. David will forever live in accordance with the law of the Lord.

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Courage to Say What God Says

Psalm 119:43 And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, for my hope is in your rules.

Here, David begs God not to take the word of truth out of his mouth. The Word of Truth is about God's faithful love and saving grace. If the Lord had not saved him, it would have meant that this word had been ripped out from his mouth, because it would no longer be true. The good thing is that God saves in accordance with His good and true word which is the gospel of the Kingdom of God.

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I always want an answer to those who mock me!

Psalm 119,42 Then I can answer the scoffers, for I trust in your word.

This prayer is a close follow-up to what he asked for in the previous verse. There, David prayed that God's faithful love and his good salvation should come to him, as God had promised him. Now he tells God what he will do when he experiences God's mercy and works of grace.

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May your gentle and faithful love overwhelm me

Waw is the Hebrew letter that the next eight verses start with. Very few Hebrew words start with this letter, but it is often used as a conjunction as "and". The theme of this section is trust in God.

ו

Psalm 119.41Let your steadfast love come to me, O Lord, your salvation according to your promise; 

Again David prays to Jehovah, the Lord, the Eternal I Am. He prays for two things, mercy and salvation. They are in some ways synonymous words in this context, because they are all about the same. When God shows mercy, we share in His salvation.

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I long for your commandments!

 

Psalm 119,40 Behold, I long for your precepts; in your righteousness give me life!

David has just talked about the scorn and disgrace he gets because he stuck to God's word. With that in mind, I think what he says is very strong: "I long for your precepts!" That is a powerful statement that we need to look more closely at.

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Defend me against ridiculous and negative criticism!

Psalm 119.39 Turn away the reproach that I dread, for your rules are good.

David prays for grace to be spared from the mockery and shame that comes from sticking to God's good laws. He is like us and obviously doesn't like to be looked down upon. He wants, as we all do, to be respected for who he is and for what he believes in. Unfortunately, he knows from bitter experience, that he is not always respected when he speaks the word of God.

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Confirm your promises to me!

Psalm 119,38 Confirm to your servant your promise, that you may be feared.

This prayer shows us that David had learned to recdeive the Word of God. There was no longer any talk of commandments, laws or regulations. He has received the word to him into his heart. He has heard God through the Scriptures. He has read and meditated on God's Word in such a way that he has heard God's voice through what he has read and meditated on. We see that from what he says: "Your promise to your servant." God's word has become personal to him. This is one of the most important lessons we can learn, learning to hear from God as we read the Bible.

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Turn my eyes away!

Psalm 119,37 Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways. 

Our eyes are important. Our eyes are the door to the soul. What we see creates thoughts and can awaken all kinds of desires within us. We are strongly influenced by what we see. Unfortunately, we are not always as aware of this and look at things we should not have looked at. In our culture, we are bombarded with pictures of young and old that we could benefit being spared from. We are exposed to nudity and worse in many media. Pornography is easily accessible and captures many in its devastating web.

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God, make me willing to obey!

Psalm 119.36 Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain!

Again, David's prayer shows great insight into human nature. He knows himself so well that he asks for God's help. He knows that hearts and minds are a battle ground where strong forces fight for power. Therefore, he prays that God will stir the heart and bend it towards the word of God, that he may enjoy and delight to live after the testimonies of God. He prays, "God, make me willing to obey what you say! Make me want to stick to your law! ”

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Lead me in the path of your commandments

Psalm 119,35 Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it.

In the previous verses, David prayed for insight and understanding. Now he asks for guidance. The words he uses in this prayer includes the meaning that God must guide him by bending his will. He prays that God must awaken his inner soul power to choose to do what God wants. This is somewhat similar to what Paul says: “For God will continually revitalise you, implanting within you the passion to do what pleases him” (Phil. 2:13). We need to understand both the word of God and how to do what God wants. In order to do that, we depend on God working in us.

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Understanding to observe the law

Psalm 119:34 Give me understanding, that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart.

I like the burning zeal David has to learn from God what man could not teach him. God has given all human beings a measure of intellectual capacity to think and learn, but here David teaches us that we can ask God to give us grace to use that ability to understand what tends to our peace. He asks to know how to keep God's law. He prays that the Lord must enlighten his mind to understand God's will.

We need wisdom and understanding to keep God's law. Therefore, we also find in the New Testament that the apostle Paul often prays that the Holy Spirit must give the believers enlightened eyes to understand and take possession of  our inheritance. He calls the Spirit the Spirit of wisdom and revelation. The Apostle John says: we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ (1 John 5:20).

In this Psalm, David does not ask just for understanding to keep the word. He also prays for grace to observe God's law wholeheartedly. In Hebrew thinking, understanding and knowledge are not anything theoretical and intellectual, but are always linked to life. We only understand God's Word when we live it. If we do not live by the word of God, we have not understood it. If we truly understand who God is and what He says we should do, we would not dare or want to do something other than obey. When we have come to know God through Jesus Christ, we also have the urge to do His will.

There are some translations where this last sentence is not a prayer, but a promise: Truly, I shall observe it with my whole heart! There is no contradiction between its two ways of translating this sentence. Whenever we give a promise to God, we do it in prayer for grace to fulfil it. Whenever we commit ourselves to something for God, we do so in the belief that God will help us. Our prayer and promise go in the same direction. Both are turned to God. It is him we want to learn from. It is His will that we will do, and it is His grace that will help us. We pray wholeheartedly, and will gladly keep and observe His law of our whole heart.

"Give me an understanding heart, that I with burning zeal can know and obey your truth!"


Show me the meaning of your way

Psalm 119.33 marks a new section. All the next eight verses start with the Hebrew letter He. In these verses we find many prayers to understand God's path. These are prayers that God's people need to pray in our day.

Psalm 119.33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes; and I will keep it to the end. 

"Lord, teach me!" This is how a disciple prays. Whoever is an apprentice says this to his master. "Teach me the profession. Teach me how to do it. Teach me to become a master who knows his subject, just like you! ” When David says, Lord teach me, it becomes too weak to compare it with the student asking his teacher for instruction. He had both priests, prophets, and wise counselors he could get help from, but he asked to be guided by God's counsel. For who is a teacher like him? (Job 36:22)

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You make my heart great

Psalm 119, 32 I will run in the way of your commandments when you enlarge my heart! 

With these words, David shows us his great zeal for the Lord. He is eager and full of fire. He has a burning desire to live according to God's commandments. "I hasten to obey your laws!" "I want to run in the way your commandments."

That's a fantastic attitude David is expressing here. May we all have the same willingness of heart and mind towards the Lord's commandments.

There is a wonderful reason for this prayer: "For you make my heart great!" Some thinks that this  it is about gaining more understanding in the word of God: "for you help me to understand the commandments right." If there is narrowness in our hearts and if we are restricted in our minds, we will not understand the word of God the right way. If we are one-sided and petty, the understanding of the Word will also be so. Then we become prisoners of the letter that kills and brings condemnation. Then we become legalistic and judgmental. Then we hang up in all sorts of details and small things, and tend to hit others in the head with strong opinions.

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A tribute to Tony Ling

To be somebody is to be like Tony Ling

Being truly, uniquely, one of a kind,

  • The eloquent prince of preachers
  • A visionary man with a message
  • A prophetic father,
  • An outstanding hero,
  • The best example, a true legend,
  • A covenant friend

Being an awesome man of God,

having humility and inspired wisdom.

Being an amazing man of the Word,

sowing seeds of truth that liberates people.

Being a container of revelation,

opening up the Word of God,

helping people to find Jesus on each page of the Bible.

Being warmhearted and devoted to Jesus,

expressing passion and zeal for his Master.

Being unforgettable funny,

having a deep sense of humour,

making people laugh, creating so much laughter.

Being an incredible man of God,

making everyone feeling welcome and special

Being humble and brimming with the word,

always imparting revelation of Jesus

Being an incredible giant of faith,

leaving an immeasurable legacy

that will continue to enlighten

the people of God in generations to come.

Being a remarkable prophetic man,

changing people’s lives through his prophetic words,

envisioning and empowering them

to fulfil their calling in life.

Text: Erling Thu, May 6, 2020


Let your whole life be firm and anchored in the word of God.

Psalm 119,31 I cling to your testimonies, O Lord; let me not be put to shame! 

Again, David confess his choice of life: "I cling to your testimonies!" He has bound himself to the word of God. In fact, he says he has been glued to God's commands. His entire life is firm and rooted in the Word of God. He has made a lifelong decision to hold on to the Word as his most valuable treasure. He hide it in his heart and lives after it.

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A choice for life helps us in adversity

Psalm 119,30 I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I set your rules before me.

In this verse, David says something very important. He says with great conviction and zeal: "I have chosen!" He has made a decision. He has taken an unshakeable stand. He has decided what he wants to do, how he wants to live, what goals he wants to achieve. He has made a choice for life. Such choices of life are vital to us and will save us from turmoil and confusion. I thank God that at a young age I had the grace to make a choice to serve the Lord all of my life. This choice has helped me many times of adversity and temptation. It has helped me to guide my life through many challenges and trials.

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Keep me far away from false ways

Psalm 119.29 Put false ways far from me and graciously teach me your law! 

When life is heavy and difficult, it is easy to listen to our soul enemy. He pumps our head full of lies that are easy to believe: That there is nothing you can do. That there is no hope for you. That you might as well give up. That everything is meaningless. That you are hopeless and without a future. That you have said no and turned away from God, so there is no more forgiveness for you. That you are not good enough and never will be.Only give up. Or maybe he says, you are good enough the way you are, and can live the way you want to after your own desires, without it having any negative consequences for you.

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To be somebody is not a matter of right or wrong

To be somebody
is not a matter of right or wrong
it is not a matter of having the political correct opinions
or the classical orthodox doctrine

To be somebody
is a matter of being kind
- of caring for others
- of loving in words and deeds
To be somebody
is all about forgiving
- those who persecute you
and being generous
- towards those who are different

To be somebody
is not a matter of theology
it is all about living a good life
- trusting the Son of man
who set aside the privileges of deity
and became one of us to bring us to God
ministering life to us by dying our death

When you do a favour
to those who don't deserve it
then you are really somebody


Drowned in tears of pain

Psalm 119.28 My soul melts away for sorrow; strengthen me according to your word! 

Again, David tells how he is. Life is difficult. He cries with sorrow. He uses strong expressions to put words into the situation he is in. "It's as if my soul is melting away in those running tears." In fact, he says that the sorrow was about to kill him. In one version he says he has drowned in tears of pain (SPCL). He carries in his heart a painful grief that is heavy to bear. Grief overwhelms him. Sorrow eats him up. He is suffocated by the painful grief.

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"Make me understand!"

Psalm 119.27 Make me understand the way of your precepts, and I will meditate on your wondrous works. 

When meeting the many challenges in life, David prays a prayer that we need to pray over and over again: "Make me understand!" He asked to be able understand in both verses 12 and 18. We encounter things in life that we do not understand. The situation is not always the way we expected. Maybe our dreams were too big or unrealistic? Or maybe the challenges we face are part of the training to help us fulfill our dreams?

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To be somebody is drinking deeply of the Spirit

To be somebody is drinking deeply of the Spirit

being immersed in the Life-giving One

being soaked in the new wine

being taken by the Holy Wind

to rise up with soaring wings like eagles

and carried away from the self-centred life

To be somebody

Is to be taken out of oneself

Becoming part of something greater

Living for a higher cause

Relating to other persons

Interacting with kindred spirits

Through the Spirit of Life

Whom you are constantly drinking of


Acknowledging our sin brings inner health

Psalm 119.26 When I told of my ways, you answered me; teach me your statutes! 

I told you about my path. I acknowledged my sin for you. Openly, I confessed to you everything I did. I told you all my ways. And you answered me!

An open confession is good for the soul. Acknowledging our sins brings inner health. It is not good to keep quiet and only struggle with our own thoughts. When we keep it all inside; our dishonesty devastate our inner lives. Then we are filled with frustration, irrepressible anguish, and misery. When we ponder and strive with heavy thoughts about something stupid we have said or done, we waste away. Then we become paralyzed. Then we lose our energy and courage. When we loudly and clearly confess our sin to God and do not cover our iniquity, then God answers and that changes everything.

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Pressed against the dust

Daleth is the fourth letter of the Hebrew alphabet. All the next eight verses begin with this letter corresponding to D in our alphabet. It seems that David is having a hard time and is depressed in this section of eight daleth verses.

Psalm 119.25 My soul clings to the dust; give me life according to your word! 

There is a rather drastic portrayal David give us in the first sentence: "My soul lies in the dust", "my soul is depressed", "I lie pressed against the dust"! “I am close to death!” He is not doing well. Life is difficult. He lies prostrate in the dust and is pressed down. There is not much honour and royal reverence in this situation he is currently in.

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To be somebody is living in the sacred garden of covenant

To be somebody

is to live a life of consistent commitment

to let friendship and love grow

to become beautiful flowers

in the sacred garden of covenant

It is to allow the early buds

of encouragement and excitement

turn into full bloom

- as a foretaste of heaven

When your friendship is too costly

to be expressed in words

then the future is yours

to explore the beauty of covenant living

To be somebody

is to be adventurous enough

to dare to explore the depths of covenant love


Following God's counsel is the safest thing we can do 

Psalm 119.24 Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors.

This verse is the last one to begin with the Hebrew letter gimel. In the first verse we found a prayer for life in abundance. Then we have seen that the psalmist faced many challenges in his life. It was not easy for him to handle the adversity and negativity he met. Therefore, I think the way he ends this section is extraordinarily great.

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What to do when people are plotting against you?

 Psalm 119.23 Even though princes sit plotting against me, your servant will meditate on your statutes.

It is a fantastic attitude David express in what he says here. He shows us who has the highest priority with him. When the officers and leaders sit and talk negatively about him, it is not important for him to defend himself. What is important to him is to give the Word the right place in his mind.

David is not in an easy situation when he writes this verse. The chieftains are sitting and conspiring against him. Important leaders sit together and talk negatively about him. The princes are plotting against him. He faces great adversity and a lot of negativity. In the former verse he met  scorn and contempt, but now it is even worse. He is opposed by great men, chiefs, powerful officers and princes.

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Take away from me scorn and contempt

Psalm 119:22 Take away from me scorn and contempt, for I have kept your testimonies.

David asks for grace to be saved from ridicule and contempt. He obviously doesn't like to be looked down upon. He wants, as we all do, to be respected for who he is and for what he believes in. He knows of bitter experience, that it is not always so.

We can face scorn and contempt for at least two reasons. Atheists or people who hate God will despise those who believe in God. When we are God's friends, the world quickly becomes our enemy. When we love God and His words, we must expect to be mocked and ridiculed in various ways. We can carry this mockery with a raised head, for it is really directed at God. Then it is an honour for us to suffer for his name.

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God's displeasure rests with those who think they know everything

Psalm 119:21 You rebuke the insolent, accursed ones, who wander from your commandments. 

Earlier in this Psalm we have seen that the psalmist has an humble and teaCHable attitude. He longs for God and wants to gain insight into his commandments that he can live according to God's will. He is filled with joyful confidence in the Word of God. He bows to the judgments of the Lord and will obey his precepts. He is meditating on the blessings of obeying the law of the Lord.

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Consumed by irresistible longings and holy cravings

Psalm 119,20 My soul is consumed with longing for your rules at all times.

That's a strong word David uses when he says, "I am consumed day and night!" "My soul is broken!" (NB). He is eaten up on the inside. He is crushed. He loses his powers. He feels like hs is perishing. It is not external adversity or difficulties in life that stifle his strength and powers, it is his own length.

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I am a stranger in this world

Psalm 119.19 I am a sojourner on the earth; hide not your commandments from me! 

David starts this verse by putting words on who he is. He is a guest on earth. He is a pilgrim. He is a sojourner. He doesn't have his home here. He belongs to another city and is on his way home. So are we. It is the same position we are in, whatever status we have, or how well we succeed in life, we will always feel like alien on earth. We do not have our lasting home in this world, for our eternal and permanent abode lies in the coming age. When the earth is recreated and everything in heaven and on earth have been brought together into one under the dominion of Jesus Christ, then we will no longer be alienated.

It is the secular culture and prevailing philosophies that make Christians feel alienated in the world. What is politically correct in our time is often on a collision course with what is right, true and good for us who hold on to the Bible as God's Word.

It is this feeling of not belonging, feeling of being a stranger, feeling of being an outsider on earth that makes us cry out to God: "Do not hide your commandments from us!" We are being squeezed on all corners, but have our footing in the revelation of the word of God. We need to live in revelation. We need new light in the Word every single day. We need the safe feeling of being led by God's commandments. We need a constant reminder of the promises associated with living in accordance with the law of the Lord. We must find comfort and joy in the Word of God.

As an alien on earth, we need open communication with our right home. As pilgrims and friends of God, we need to hear the living words that come out of the mouth of God. The Bible is God's letter of love to us. We pray that we always may hear the glorious voice of our dear bridegroom through what we read in the Bible.

“My life on earth is so brief, so tutor me in the ways of your wisdom.” (TPT)


Open my eyes!

Psalm 119.18 Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.

This prayer is perhaps the secret of David’s appreciation of the word of God. He prays that God must open the eyes of his heart to a spiritual understanding and insight. God's law is full of wonderful things, but it is not always easy for the human eye to grasp it. Therefore, we need to pray the prayer for revelation that David prays in this verse.

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Give your servant plenty

We can put, life in abundance, as heading over the next eight verses that all start with the letter gimel. We gain this life through prayer and faithfully adhering to the Word of God.

G

Gimel

Psalm 119.17 Deal bountifully with your servant, that I may live and keep your word.

David starts this section with a heartfelt prayer: Do good to your servant. He does not come with a claim, because he has no reason or right to demand anything from God. But he can turn to God in humble prayer. This is something we can all do. We can come before God with our passionate and heartfelt prayers.

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I will delight in God's law

Psalm 119.16 I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word.

David finishes the eight verses that start with beth in a wonderful way. This essence is largely about the joy he finds in the word of God. Now he tells how he rejoices in God's statutes. He says that he finds joy in all the laws of God and does not want to forget to walk in his words.

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I will meditate on the word of God and walk on his path

Psalm 119.15 I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways.

David tells us what he wants to continue to do. He wants to meditate on the Lord's command and fix his gaze on his path. It is not something he is planning to do, but something he will continue to do. He loves the Word of God and takes it seriously. Therefore, he meditate on the Lord's precepts to be able to understand them and live according to them. This word, precepts, is a strongly commanding word and is always used in this psalm in plural. In other words, David says that he will meditate upon all the commandments of the Lord and think carefully through all that God has said. He wants to fix his eyes on the Lord's path to learn to walk on them.

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I delight in walking by your testimonies.

Psalm 119.14 In the way of your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches.

We meet a wonderful attitude of heart in this verse. The focus is on God's law or testimony. The psalmist says that God's Word shows him how to live and that he finds great joy in living the Word. He uses strong words: "I delight, I rejoice, I find the supreme happiness in your statutes! I delight in walking by your testimonies." He actually says that he finds greater joy in following what God says than in all the riches of the world.

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