Friday, July 16, 2010

Your Testimonies are my Delight

“Your testimonies are my delight” (Psalm 119:24)

Psalm 119 is a clear declaration that the Word of God and his will for us is a joy and delight to our souls. The unregenerate have no understanding in this manner. They see God’s commands as a prison holding them back from freedom. Sadly they have mistaken the truth for a lie which is exactly the plan of the evil one to hold them in bondage. For the regenerate let us praise the Lord saying, “Your testimonies are my delight.”

I confess that many times I read God’s word as just words on a page rather than life instruction for my soul. I come at times out of duty to read what God’s will is for my life. I still struggle with wanting to live for myself rather than submitting joyfully to his will. But this attitude reflects to me the truth of Scripture. It is amazing that my sinful nature is actually a proof to defend the Bible as the truth. When I read that my heart is deceitful and desperately wicked, I can affirm this truth because I know my own heart. I am not offended by this truth but rather humbled as I read the gospel to see that God sent his Son to die in my place. My heart, though wicked, is overwhelmed by the truth. My reading which started as duty has transitioned to delight because of God’s grace. The truth overtakes my feelings. That is exactly what happens when we see the testimonies of God. We are captivated by the truth saying to God, “Your testimonies are my delight.”

Being a follower of Christ is not an easy task in a fallen world. Our battle against Satan and our flesh is not an easy battle or a battle that will end in this lifetime. Another reason we ought to delight in God’s commands is to fight against the fleeting pleasures of sin. David understood this truth when he said, “I have stored up your Word in my heart, that I might not sin against you” (Ps. 119:10). Reading and knowing God’s Word is how we fight the battle against sin. The Word is the sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17). The sword is our weapon of offense in the battle against sin. The point in the imagery of being prepared for battle is the urgency of our fight and danger of not being prepared to fight. The temptation to sin is coming. This is a guarantee but God graciously has provided the means to fight against those temptations with the truth of his Word and the work of his Spirit. Obedience will ultimately glorify our Maker and produces the greatest amount of joy in our soul. We will begin to say with David, “Your testimonies are my delight.”

Do you delight in God’s truth? Do you believe the truth that the Creator knows ultimately what will bring joy to those he has created? Maybe it won’t seem that way right away but as you walk in the obedience of his Word, by his power and grace, your joy in bringing God glory will become your eternal satisfaction. Glorifying God involves maximum amount of satisfaction. “[God] You make known to me the path of life, in your presence there is fullness of joy, at your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Ps. 16:11). The delighting comes from understanding God’s plan is perfect and our sinful way of life is not even close. This is so easy to type for everyone to read but the reality is this is a tough battle. Too often I want it my way instead of submitting to God’s perfect will. I am so grateful for grace and mercy. God, in his infinite wisdom, sent his Son to die in my place for my sins so that I may bring him glory in my pursuit of holiness. My heart is not always there but God I pray that I may say with David, “Your testimonies are my delight.”

Grace upon grace,
JRL

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