Reflections on Psalm 119 (ג Gimel)

pilgrims-progress-18Psalm 119:17-24

17 Be good to your servant while I live,
that I may obey your word.
18 Open my eyes that I may see
wonderful things in your law.
19 I am a stranger on earth;
do not hide your commands from me.
20 My soul is consumed with longing
for your laws at all times.
21 You rebuke the arrogant, who are accursed,
those who stray from your commands.
22 Remove from me their scorn and contempt,
for I keep your statutes.
23 Though rulers sit together and slander me,
your servant will meditate on your decrees.
24 Your statutes are my delight;
they are my counselors.

“I am like a foreigner in this land.” (v. 19) This utterance expresses the changed mind and heart of a man whose devotion to God has left him with a sense of being out of place in the world system, which runs on the fuel of idolatry and self-centeredness. As he meditates on God’s Word, he is increasingly at odds with the people who still call the world home.

“Open my eyes so I can truly see the marvelous things in your law!” (v. 18) Salvation occurs as God supernaturally enables fallen people to turn from their sins and come to Him. The psalmist’s perspective is echoed by Paul: “The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.” (Rom. 8:7) Yet through the ministrations of the Holy Spirit, our hearts are softened, and our eyes and ears are opened to the truth.




About Douglas Abbott

I am a freelance writer by trade, philosopher and comedian by accident of birth. I am an assiduous observer of humanity and endlessly fascinated with people, the common elements that make us human, what motivates people and the fingerprint of God in all of us. I enjoy exploring the universe in my search for meaning, beauty and friendship. My writing is an extension of all these things and something I did for fun long before I ever got paid. My hope is that the reader will find in this portfolio a pleasing and inspiring literary hodgepodge. Good reading!
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