Friday, December 14, 2012

Psalm 139

2012-12-14 11.15.10

This morning I got to study Psalm 139, a scripture I have read many times in my life, but it is so beautiful, it is a great one to read over and over again. I would love for you to read this scripture and tell me what you get from it. This is what I found in my searching:

Things God will do: (actions)
  • Search me and know me (v. 1)
  • Compassest my path (v. 3)
  • Beset me behind and before, lay his hand upon me (v. 5)
  • Lead me and hold me (v. 10)
  • Possess my reins and cover me (v. 13)
  • Slay the wicked (v. 19)
  • Search me, know my heart, try me and know my thoughts (v. 23)
  • See any wicked ways in me and lead me (v. 24)
Notes: "Search me", "know me", "lead me", and protection are repeated over and over in these verses. This tells me it is very important as Christians that we ask God to open our eyes to our actions, and even our motives. This way, we can become aware of the sin in our lives and make changes accordingly.

I didn't know what it meant to say "Thou compassest my path" (v. 3) so I did some research. Read the whole verse to put it in context: "Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted [with] all my ways."  As we walk this path of life, God "scatters" our path, separating our good works/thoughts from our evil works/thoughts. As for "lying down", he even knows our thoughts that we alone think in the night, when we are in bed, and the world is quiet, and just our thoughts are going through our mind. He knows our whole path and all of our thoughts, and all of our ways, whether they are good or bad, and that is our motives as well. This goes perfectly with the next verse: "For [there is] not a word in my tongue, [but], lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether."  He knows our thoughts even when we don't speak them or put them into action. Not only that, but he knows our thought's origin... the motive... the purpose we have if we do put it into action (whether good or bad). Amazing. He is all-knowing, for sure.

I also didn't know exactly what "possess my reins" meant. The word "reins" is literally "kidneys". God has owned me since my kidneys were being formed, and started protecting me even as I was just in my mother's womb. Beautiful.

Commands to me:
  • Praise God (v. 14)
  • Hate those that hate God and grieve those who are his enemy (v. 21)
I believe that we are to hate the sin, love the sinner. Kind of cliche phrasing, but I do believe this is true. The wording of this psalm actually says "I hate them, O Lord, that hate thee... am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee..." but when you look at Psalm 101:3 the same author (David) says "I hate the work of them that turn aside". I do not believe God wants us to hate people due to their sin. I don't believe that God hates them either. I believe he loves everyone (lost and saved) and hates all sin (from both the lost and saved) and we should as well.

Characteristics of God:
All-knowing, protector, omnipresent, creator, lover of me, leader

What should I take away from this?
God knows everything about me. He knows the thoughts I've had (even ones I've forgotten) and the thoughts I will have. He separates our good from our bad. He knows what our motives are when we do things or say things . He protects me and surrounds me. He is omni-present so I never have to worry about being alone. I am in His hands at all times, being led by one and being held by the other (v. 10). He created me and knew me before I was even born. He saw that I was unperfect and even then he still loved me and wanted me... I cannot even count the thoughts he has toward me which are precious and loving - even though he knows all my faults. If I live for God, I will hate sin and want to turn away from things that I do that are against God. I should constantly be asking God to reveal things to me in my life that need to be changed, and then make the changes accordingly.

I used a Matthew Henry commentary to help me on some of the verses I didn't understand.

I would love to know if you have any thoughts to add to this beautiful scripture! Something I missed? Something I misinterpreted? Something I should take note of? 

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