“The Word, Part 8” – One Year Bible Reading (Psalms/Proverbs) – May 30

Psalm 119:113-128   A Wisdom Psalm By Anonymous

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Psalm 119:113-128   Ayin‘ching For Trouble

Today’s acrostic stanzas begin with the Hebrew letters Samekh and Ayin.  A Samekh is like a “S” in English and the Ayin is just a silent letter.

Samekh

Double-minded people won’t ever receive anything from the Lord.  James said that (cf. James 1:6-8, cf. Rom. 14:23).  The psalmist hated double-minded people (v. 113).  He knew he couldn’t trust people who weren’t sure about what they were doing.  A prototypical double-minded person is an unbeliever.  They certainly don’t know what they’re doing.

The psalmist would much rather trust God’s Word.  He knew it was firm and stable and could be trusted (v. 113b).  Do you trust what you hear on TV or see in movies?  Do you notice how they contradict themselves all the time.  Recently, a major national news operation was in town covering contemporary events.  They got all kinds of information wrong about local city names and landmarks.  I wondered how I could trust them on other stories if they couldn’t get things right that I personally knew about.

The Word is so important.  It should be our life (v. 116).  It trips up the wicked but protects us (vv. 117-119).  The psalmist lives the way he should.  He shakes at the thought of God’s dealings with people (v. 120).  He loves believers and will discipline them but the wicked need to really watch out.  Better yet, they should turn toward God and trust Him.

Ayin

In the Ayin stanza, the psalmist pleads with God to protect him from fakers (vv. 121-128).  He only wants to do God’s will (v. 121).  Hesed, “lovingkindness,” is again mentioned in verse 124 because it is through God’s grace and love that the psalmist is protected.  He’s apparently having trouble again with the arrogant who are also lawbreakers (vv. 122, 126).

The psalmist’s priorities were right (v. 127).  He’d rather have a good Bible than be a millionaire (v. 127).  When a person has that kind of attitude, God will watch out for him (vv. 121-122).

He not only disliked double-minded people (v. 113), he also found abhorrent those who take a “false way” (v. 128, see yesterday’s verse 104).  Who do you hang with?  Are they people that are itching for trouble?  Are they double-minded doubters?  Maybe it’s time to find new friends.

Proverbs 16:10-11   A Standard Concern

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Verse 10 is a little like verse 9.  When a king of Israel spoke, it was supposed to be as God Himself speaking (Deut. 17:18-20).  Of course, we’ve already seen that, “The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He wishes” (Prov. 21:1).  So even the king’s words are under the control of God.  And that includes the kings or leaders of any nation.

Much of the problem in the world today is that there are no standards.  The moral standards all go back to God someway (v. 10).  The Ten Commandments are the basis for much of our morality today as are many of the Mosaic laws.  If atheists have good moral standards, it is because they just happen to be the same as God’s.  The decline of our nation can be tied to the failure of the church in America.  As the church has failed to be salt and light in the world (cf. Matt. 5:13-16), the nation has declined and lost God’s blessing.

People have said that “everything is relative.”  Have you ever heard that?  Try to cheat those people, though, and you’ll find out that they, too, believe in standards.  God is not happy when people are cheated.  He really is not happy when His moral standards are violated (v. 11b).

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