Psalm 19

Jun 3, 2016

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above
[a] proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words,
whose voice is not heard.
Their voice[b] goes out through all the earth,
and their words to the end of the world.
In them he has set a tent for the sun,
    which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
and its circuit to the end of them,
and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect,[c]
reviving the soul;
the testimony of the Lord is sure,
making wise the simple;
the precepts of the Lord are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
the fear of the Lord is clean,
enduring forever;
the rules
[d] of the Lord are true,
and righteous altogether.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
and drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors?
Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
and innocent of great transgression.

14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

The heavens, according to David, are putting on display the glory of God. One glance at the heavens above reveal God’s handiwork. A beautiful blue sky with the sun ablaze or a dark night with millions of stars in view. Both scream that God exists.  His glory is plainly visible to eyes that he has opened.  Each day the glory of God is on display in his creation. They have no audible voice but the heavens clearly speak.  Their voice is heard throughout the earth and it proclaims the glory of God.

Stop and think about what is on display each and every day. 

We exist on a planet that is uniquely positioned so as to sustain to life.  The position of our planet was perfectly designed by God and it remains so today by God’s sustaining power.  The fact that we do not float off into space is by God’s design.  The fact that we do not burn up or freeze is by God’s design. The heavens surely declare the glory of God.

The God who created the heavens, currently sustains them, and will one day redeem them has also given to man his law.  According to David, this law is perfect, that is complete, not lacking in anything.  It revives the soul.  The law of God brings life.  It takes what was dead and brings it to life.  Only the law of God has this power.  The law of man may produce a certain degree of morality or restrain evil in a limited capacity but it is not perfect.  It cannot save the soul.  Even if a man knew all the laws of men and kept them perfectly, what would he have gained. They cannot save his soul. W.S. Plumer in his commentary on the Psalms has this to say in regards to one keeping the laws of man: “His soul was not thereby restored from its wanderings, its errors, its sins, its sicknesses, its death.  Nor was it converted to truth, to righteousness, to life, to God.” Only the law of God is perfect and only it can revive the soul. 

David goes on to declare that the testimony of the Lord is sure, his precepts are right, his commandment is pure, fear of him is clean, and his rules are true.  All of these descriptions can only rightly be made about God’s law.  His testimony about himself is reliable and it clearly teaches what one must know and do to please God.  It makes wise the simple.  His precepts are upright and rejoice the heart.  They are not burdensome to one who desires to please God.  God’s commandment free from any injustice and it enlightens the eyes.  God’s commandment teaches one what is sinful and what is pleasing to God.  What was uncertain or unclear is made certain and clear by God’s commandment.  The fear of the Lord is not corrupt. It is the beginning of wisdom and the rules of God are without any mixture of error.

David’s next words inform us that we should desire the law of God more than fine gold.  Like one would seek for this precious metal, we should seek after God’s instruction, his precepts, rules, and testimony.  As one would spend hours of time and expend great amounts of energy searching for fine gold, one should likewise, if not more so, spend time and energy in knowing and obeying the commandments of God.  In doing so, the servant of God is warned and rewarded.  He is kept back from sinning and is therefore blameless before God. 

Finally, may David’s last words in this Psalm be our words. May the words of our mouths and the meditation of our hearts be acceptable in the sight of God.

By His Grace Alone,