THIS WEEK: Psalm 119 – Benefits of the Word!
Did you know the longest “chapter” in the Bible is a song that recognizes and reflects on the Word of God and all its benefits? This week’s devotions will highlight a few of the 176 verses. Another interesting component of this Psalm is you can learn the Hebrew Alphabet. Each set of eight verses began with the same letter of the Hebrew alphabet. This isn’t reflected in the English translation but, the heading of each section is identified by that letter of the Hebrew alphabet.
Here’s how the Psalm starts:
1 Blessed are those whose ways are blameless,
who walk according to the law of the Lord.
2 Blessed are those who keep his statutes
and seek him with all their heart—
3 they do no wrong
but follow his ways.
At times the Word of God gets criticized as being irrelevant, out of date, or limiting to freedom. Individuals have chosen to see the Scripture of God as a constrictor to fun or something that restricts them from the good things of life.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Yes it curtails the desire of the sinful nature. It guides the life of the individual away from the love of money and self to the love of God and others. It points out the acts of the sinful nature and points people to produce the fruit of the Spirit. It is brutally honest in how people were punished for worshipping false gods and yet is direct in relating the persecutions of those who did not give in to worship of someone or something other than the LORD.
Does the Scripture limit our behavior? Sure. Our sinful nature loves to take us on a path away from the Lord.
Galatians 5:19-20 is brutally honest.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Look at this list. Does living like this seem fun, inviting, and a life worth living? How does this bring a blessing to you or to others?
The biggest blessing God doesn’t want us to miss out on is the reality of heaven. He knows the power of the sinful nature to turn from him, and so he calls us to repentance and communicates the truth of his love, mercy and grace in the pages of Scripture to turn us back to him.
The Scripture tells us “The Lord laid on him (Jesus) the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6) We could not be blameless on our own, but have been given the perfection of Jesus. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
Believing and living with Jesus at the focus of our lives brings us the greatest blessing of all…life with God forever.
The only place God tells us of this and blesses us with this is the pages of his Word.
Seek him. Follow him. Be blessed by him!
Apply: This week keep track of the blessings you receive because you are connected to and walking with the Lord and his Word. Maybe there’s some you’ve been missing!
Prayer: Lord we love your Word and all the blessings it brings. Help me to stay close to you and your Word and enjoy the blessings you give to those who do. AMEN.