TO CHEW ON: "Blessed is the man who fears the Lord.
Who delights greatly in His commandments." Psalm 112:1
When was the last time you delighted in commandments or rules?
"Delights" (chaphets) means to take pleasure in, be bent or inclined toward, to cherish or be favourably disposed toward, to love and desire. The psalmist calls the person who has this attitude toward God's commandments "blessed."
It may seem strange to us that Old Testament writers extolled the law that included odd-to-us rules about using materials in their pure forms, avoiding certain foods and observing standards of hygiene that included clothes washing, hand-washing, and observing specific procedures when it came to things like mildew-infested houses.
Yet, when we look deeper, we see in the Rule-maker a heart that was for the people, that sought to protect them from dangers of which they were unaware. For though we're still not clear about the reason for some of these commandments, others now make a lot of sense (ask anyone who has had to live in a mold-infested house).
Perhaps that is why these writers found "delight" in God's commandments. They knew God was for them and had given them these boundaries and limits for their own good.
We need to have the same attitude about the principles of holy living which apply to us today. Even if we don't understand the reason for them we know:
- They are given for our benefit.
- They come from Someone who loves us and has our best interests at heart.
- They come from Someone who we value and esteem. Our delighted inspection gives us information and knowledge about the Lawgiver.
PRAYER: Dear God, please help me to delight in Your word — not only its promises but also its commandments. Help me to see beyond their apparent restrictiveness to how You show Yourself to be for me in them. Amen.
MORE: Making God's words part of you
In a 1997 sermon, pastor John Piper speaks about treasuring God's word, memorizing it, obeying it, and applying it to real-life situations. He begins:
"There are two ways to state the ultimate goal of life, one positively and one negatively. Positively we could say: the ultimate goal of life is to glorify God by enjoying him forever. Or negatively, we could say: the ultimate goal of life is not to sin. They both mean the same thing because sinning is falling short of glorifying God by embracing other things as more enjoyable." - John Piper
Read all of "Thy Word I Have Treasured In My Heart"
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