Psalm 119 – Seeking God and His Precepts

God is our strength when we are weak.  In fact, he is our strength when we are strong.  It’s just that the strong often have more options and choose self more and God less.  The psalmist cries out to God to remember his promise and to teach him God’s decrees…

49 Remember your word to your servant,
for you have given me hope.
50 My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life.
51 The arrogant mock me unmercifully,
but I do not turn from your law.
52 I remember, Lord, your ancient laws,
and I find comfort in them.
53 Indignation grips me because of the wicked,
who have forsaken your law.
54 Your decrees are the theme of my song
wherever I lodge.
55 In the night, Lord, I remember your name,
that I may keep your law.
56 This has been my practice:
I obey your precepts.

57 You are my portion, Lord;
I have promised to obey your words.
58 I have sought your face with all my heart;
be gracious to me according to your promise.
59 I have considered my ways
and have turned my steps to your statutes.
60 I will hasten and not delay
to obey your commands.
61 Though the wicked bind me with ropes,
I will not forget your law.
62 At midnight I rise to give you thanks
for your righteous laws.
63 I am a friend to all who fear you,
to all who follow your precepts.
64 The earth is filled with your love, Lord;
teach me your decrees.
Psalm 119:49-64

This section of Psalm 119 starts with the plea to remember your words, Lord.  Remember the words you have given to us regarding your promise and your faithfulness.  And then it ends with the plea to teach us your decrees, Lord.  In between, the psalmist speaks of how he is committed to God’s word in his life.  No matter what is in front of him, he follows the precepts of the Lord.

I met someone recently who has been through the wringer.  There appears to be not a single thing which is easy for them and yet the reliance on God and the trust in God’s faithfulness is as strong as I have seen.  ‘I can’t help but follow God,’ they said.  It was the only option.

I am always talking to my kids about living life to produce more choices for yourself – it’s a reflection of success and preparation to have more than one choice in any situation.  People with less choices have less choices with God also.  At some point, God is the only choice.  He is the only one left.  Enemies or circumstance get stacked up against.  God is on your side.

The one with a multitude of choices may not even see God as one of them.  There are many options to meet needs, obtain success, or find safety and security.  We ought to envy the person who is weak to the point of relying only on God to make them strong.

Our prayer ought to be as our psalmist cries, “I have sought your face with all my heart;
be gracious to me according to your promise.” Abandon the other options.  Ask God to remember his promise and teach us his decrees.  May our strength be in the strong one.


Marc Kinna


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