Here we go! As stated – PSALM 119
176 verses? Yup! Longest Capter? Best believe it.
Psalm 119 is the 119th psalm of the Book of Psalms, generally known in English by its first verse, in the King James Version, “Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord.” The Book of Psalms is in the third section of the Hebrew Bible, the Khetuvim, and a book of the Christian Old Testament.
This obviously will take a bit! Sit tight and we will attempt to liven it.
50 facts and links for Psalm 119, as we shared – a task! Got your galoshes on? Actually, marathon gear..let’s go
Uhh! That was the start whistle!
After an introduction (if you could call it that) here we go on a trek.
Psalms 119:1-176 .
This celebrated Psalm has several peculiarities. It is divided into twenty-two parts or stanzas, denoted by the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Each stanza contains eight verses, and the first letter of each verse is that which gives name to the stanza. Its contents are mainly praises of God’s Word, exhortations to its perusal, and reverence for it, prayers for its proper influence, and complaints of the wicked for despising it. There are but two verses ( Psalms 119:122 Psalms 119:132 ) which do not contain some term or description of God’s Word. These terms are of various derivations, but here used, for the most part, synonymously, though the use of a variety of terms seems designed, in order to express better the several aspects in which our relations to the revealed word of God are presented. The Psalm does not appear to have any relation to any special occasion or interest of the Jewish Church or nation, but was evidently “intended as a manual of pious thoughts, especially for instructing the young, and its peculiar artificial structure was probably adopted to aid the memory in retaining the language.”
ALEPH. ( Psalms 119:1-8 ).
1. undefiled–literally, “complete,” perfect, or sincere (compare Psalms 37:37 ).
the way–course of life.
in the law–according to it (compare Luke 1:6 ).
law–from a word meaning “to teach,” is a term of rather general purport, denoting the instruction of God’s Word.
2. testimonies–The word of God is so called, because in it He testifies for truth and against sin.
seek him–that is, a knowledge of Him, with desire for conformity to His will.
3. his ways–the course He reveals as right.
4-6. precepts–are those directions which relate to special conduct, from a word meaning “to inspect.”
statutes–or ordinances, positive laws of permanent nature. Both words originally denote rather positive than moral laws, such as derive force from the divine appointment, whether their nature or the reasons for them are apprehended by us or not.
commandments–or institutions. The term is comprehensive, but rather denotes fundamental directions for conduct, both enjoining and forbidding.
have respect unto–or regard carefully as to their whole purport.
7. judgments–rules of conduct formed by God’s judicial decisions; hence the wide sense of the word in the Psalms, so that it includes decisions of approval as well as condemnation.
8. Recognizes the need of divine grace.
BETH. ( Psalms 119:9-16 ).
9. The whole verse may be read as a question; for,
by taking heed–is better, “for” taking heed, that is, so as to do it. The answer is implied, and inferable from Psalms 119:5 Psalms 119:10 Psalms 119:18, &c., that is, by God’s grace.
10-16. We must carefully treasure up the word of God, declare it to others, meditate on it, and heartily delight in it; and then by His grace we shall act according to it.
GIMEL. ( Psalms 119:17-24 ).
17-20. Life is desirable in order to serve God; that we may do so aright, we should seek to have our eyes opened to behold His truth, and earnestly desire fully to understand it.
21-24. God will rebuke those who despise His word and deliver His servants from their reproach, giving them boldness in and by His truth, even before the greatest men.
DALETH. ( Psalms 119:25-32 ).
25-27. Submitting ourselves in depression to God, He will revive us by His promises, and lead us to declare His mercy to others.
28-32. In order to adhere to His word, we must seek deliverance from temptations to sin as well as from despondency.
my heart–with gracious affections.
HE. ( Psalms 119:33-40 ).
33-38. To encourage us in prayer for divine aid in adhering to His truth, we are permitted to believe that by His help we shall succeed.
the way of thy statutes–that is, the way or manner of life prescribed by them. The help we hope to obtain by prayer is to be the basis on which our resolutions should rest.
37. Turn away mine eyes–literally, “Make my eyes to pass, not noticing evil.”
vanity–literally, “falsehood;” all other objects of trust than God; idols, human power, &c. ( Psalms 31:6 , 40:4 , 60:11 , 62:9 ).
quicken . . . in thy way–make me with living energy to pursue the way marked out by Thee. Revive me from the death of spiritual helplessness ( Psalms 119:17 Psalms 119:25 Psalms 119:40 Psalms 119:50 , Psalms 116:3 ).
38. who is devoted to thy fear–or better, “which (that is, Thy word) is for Thy fear,” for producing it. “Which is to those who fear Thee.” God’s word of promise belongs peculiarly to such (compareGenesis 18:19 , 1 Kings 2:4 , 8:25 ) [HENGSTENBERG].
39, 40. Our hope of freedom from the reproach of inconsistency is in God’s power, quickening us to live according to His Word, which He leads us to love.
for thy judgments are good–The time must therefore be at hand when Thy justice will turn the “reproach” from Thy Church upon the world ( Isaiah 25:8 , 66:5 , Zephaniah 2:8-10 ).
VAU. ( Psalms 119:41-48 ).
41-44. The sentiment more fully carried out. God’s mercies and salvation, as revealed in His Word, provide hope of forgiveness for the past and security in a righteous course for the future.
42. The possession of God’s gift of “salvation” ( Psalms 119:41 ) will be the Psalmist’s answer to the foe’s “reproach,” that his hope was a fallacious one.
45-48. To freedom from reproach, when imbued with God’s truth, there is added “great boldness in the faith” [ 1 Timothy 3:13 ], accompanied with increasing delight in the holy law itself, which becomes an element of happiness.
48. My hands . . . lift up unto . . . commandments–that is, I will prayerfully ( Psalms 28:2 ) direct my heart to keep Thy commandments.
ZAIN. ( Psalms 119:49-56 ).
49-51. Resting on the promises consoles under affliction and the tauntings of the insolent.
upon which–rather, “Remember Thy word unto Thy servant, because,” &c. So the Hebrew requires [HENGSTENBERG].
50. for–rather, “This is my comfort . . . that,” &c. [MAURER].
hath quickened–What the Word has already doneis to faith a pledge of what it shall yet do.
52-56. The pious take comfort, when harassed and distressed by wickedness of men who forsake God’s law, in remembering that the great principles of God’s truth will still abide; and also God’s
judgments of old–that is, His past interpositions in behalf of His people are a pledge that He will again interpose to deliver them; and they become the theme of constant and delightful meditation. The more we keep the more we love the law of God.
53. Horror–rather, “vehement wrath” [HENGSTENBERG].
54. songs–As the exile sings songs of his home ( Psalms 137:3 ), so the child of God, “a stranger on earth,” sings the songs of heaven, his true home ( Psalms 39:12 ). In ancient times, laws were put in verse, to imprint them the more on the memory of the people. So God’s laws are the believer’s songs.
house of my pilgrimage–present life ( Genesis 17:8 , 47:9 , Hebrews 11:13 ).
56. Rather, “This is peculiarly mine (literally, to me), that I keep Thy precepts” [HENGSTENBERG and MAURER].
CHETH. ( Psalms 119:57-64 ).
57-60. Sincere desires for God’s favor, penitence, and activity in a new obedience, truly evince the sincerity of those who profess to find God a portion ( Numbers 18:20 , Psalms 16:5 ,Lamentations 3:24 ).
58. favour–Hebrew, “face” ( Psalms 45:12 ).
59. So the prodigal son, when reduced to straits of misery ( Luke 15:17 Luke 15:18 ).
61, 62. This the more, if opposition of enemies, or love of ease is overcome in thus honoring God’s law.
have robbed me–better, surrounded me, either as forcible constraints like fetters, or as the cords of their nets. HENGSTENBERG translates, “snares.”
62. At midnight–HENGSTENBERG supposes a reference to the time when the Lord went forth to slay the Egyptian first-born ( Exodus 11:4 , 12:29 ; compare Job 34:20 ). But it rather refers to the Psalmist’s own praises and prayers in the night time. Compare Paul and Silas ( Acts 16:25 ; compare Psalms 63:6 ).
63. The communion of the saints. Delight in their company is an evidence of belonging to them ( Psalms 16:3 , Amos 3:3 , Malachi 3:16 ).
64. While opposed by the wicked, and opposing them, the pious delight in those who fear God, but, after all, rely for favor and guidance not on merit, but mercy.
TETH. ( Psalms 119:65-72 ).
65-67. The reliance on promises ( Psalms 119:49 ) is strengthened by experience of past dealings according with promises, and a prayer for guidance, encouraged by sanctified affliction.
66. Teach me good judgment and knowledge–namely, in Thy word (so as to fathom its deep spirituality); for the corresponding expression ( Psalms 119:12 Psalms 119:64 Psalms 119:68 ), is, “Teach me Thy statutes.”
67. Referred by HENGSTENBERG to the chastening effect produced on the Jews’ minds by the captivity ( Jeremiah 31:18 Jeremiah 31:19 ). The truth is a general one ( Job 5:6 , John 15:2 ,Hebrews 12:11 ).
68. Compare as to the Lord Jesus ( Acts 10:38 ).
69, 70. The crafty malice of the wicked, in slandering him, so far from turning him away, but binds him closer to God’s Word, which they are too stupid in sin to appreciate. HENGSTENBERG refers the “lie” to such slanders against the Jews during the captivity, as that in Ezra 4:1-6 , of sedition.
70. fat as grease–spiritually insensible ( Psalms 17:10 , 73:7 , Isaiah 6:10 ).
71, 72. So also affliction of any kind acts as a wholesome discipline in leading the pious more highly to value the truth and promises of God.