“Indignation grips me because of the wicked, who have forsaken Your law.” -Psalm 119:53
Sinful nature has not changed. There are creatures who rebel against their Creator, reaping the consequences of sin which will last longer than our earthly dot of existence. The psalmist is zealous for God, and as he sees the apathy, the hatred toward his God he is appalled and angry. The wicked forsake God’s way because it is their nature bound in sin. We are all born sinners, not able to do good or even seek God on our own unless He seeks us first. “It is by grace you have been saved through faith- and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). God’s rich mercy saves the hell-bound sinner when that soul comes to faith in Christ alone.
The law serves its purpose as a mirror to reflect the inner man, revealing to us our need of a Greater Adam than the one in Eden. Those who openly reject and mock God stir in our hearts grief, pity and righteous anger. The Christian hates what God hates and loves what He loves. What does God hate? Our sin. What does He love? People created in His own image. Although the sinful lives of the children of Satan should cause within us righteous anger for God’s honor, remember how the Lord has been long-suffering with you. We were once far from God yet He set His love on us unworthy though we are. God mercifully opened our spiritual sight so that we might truly see for the first time and live as new creations. We do not overlook or make excuses for sin, but rather approach it as God does rather than react from the flesh. He is slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love. Let this be our example too.
Grace upon grace,
Grow deeper: Psalm 14; Psalm 103:8-19; 2 Peter 3:9
“I remember Your ancient laws, O Lord, and I find comfort in them.” -Psalm 119:52
The psalmist remembers the ancient laws of the Torah. The first five books of Scripture were written by Moses, and considered very precious to the Israelites like the psalmist. He sees God’s hand of faithfulness at work in Israel’s redemptive history. The psalmist gazes intently on God’s laws drawing comfort from them.
In reading through the Old Testament laws the common theme of the Lord’s holiness and justice emerges. Our God is Holy. Holy. Holy. He demands holiness from us. How is this comforting for people who daily fail God’s standard? Because He made a way for us to come to Him. God is perfectly just and will pour out wrath on all His enemies. But God who is rich in mercy will dwell with His redeemed saints. This is why God the Father sent His Son to be a propitiation for our sins, interceding for us as a High Priest (Hebrews 10:1-23). It is not that we could ever approach Him on our own merit, in our own strength. He had to become approachable for us to ever come to Christ. Remembering God’s laws are good as we see His holiness proclaimed.
Our comfort is this- Jesus died for sinners so that we might share in His holiness, imperfectly now, yet one day free from the effects of sin, enjoying perfect holy fellowship with the One who loves us best.
Grace upon grace,
Grow deeper: John 1:14; 2 Corinthians 3:7-18; 1 John 3:1-3; 1 Corinthians 13:12
“Then I would not be put to shame when I consider all Your commands.” -Psalm 119:6
One of the benefits of God’s Law is to reveal to us our inability to keep it perfectly. It is here we see our need for a Savior rather than give up and despair. When a heart considers the holiness of God’s standard, we realize we can never measure up as sin seeks to master us. The soul who sees this feels shame. Yet it serves as an act of mercy from God, to not let us stay covered in guilt but run to the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of every repentant heart! Parables, prophecies and warnings all serve as mercies for the soul that comes alive, acknowledging the damnation of autonomy, self-righteousness and pride. It is God’s mercy to show us through His commands “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23) so that we might not perish in our sins, but come to Him for everlasting life.