This broadcaster has 283 podcast archives available on-demand.
Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.
October 4, 2021 8:00 am
There is something unique about the Bible that you hold in your hands, and the length and the majesty and the form and the unanimous substance of Psalm 119 brings our heart to reverence and to respect the Bible which is the word of God. If we want our lives reflect God's glory.
It starts with allowing his word to dwell in us richly. Hello, I'm Bill Wright and this is the true pulpit with John Green, founding pastor of truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio today is done begins a series called the magnificent word will show us that as we begin to let the holy Scriptures sink down deeply into the soil of our hearts.
God himself will begin to reveal all the blessings wisdom and maturity.
We need to live in effective Christ honoring life Don, thank you, Bill. I'm very excited about this series, you know, Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible and it is almost exclusively about the word of God in the life of the believer. It tells us what Scripture is. It's the very word of God. What Scripture does, meaning the effects that it has on our souls and what Scripture requires from us what obedience to God's word. Looks like Psalm 119 is a magnificent Psalm my friends about God's magnificent word and it's our privilege to study it together this week here on the truthful. Thank you, Don, and friend. If you're ready, let's begin today study on the true pulpit. Psalm 119 is the longest Psalm in the Bible and it is the longest chapter in the Bible. It is a poetic masterpiece of matchless greatness in the Hebrew language in form. It is an elaborate acrostic song. It has 176 verses, and there is a mathematical reason for that. Those 176 versus are divided into 22 stances of eight versus each 22×8, 176.
The beauty of it that you don't see in the English language but is very evident when at a simple glance at the Hebrew text is this each verse of each stanza begins with the sequential 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. So for us in English it would be eight versus the begin with the A8 versus with a B and so on, all the way through the C except our alphabet has 26 letters instead of 22. So in other words, the first date versus start with the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet. All of the second set of eight versus start with the second letter faith and so on and so you do the math 22 verses in the Hebrew alphabet. Eight versus attributed to each letter you come out with 176 verses in that form drives the substance of the song more than a a strictly logical progression of stanza to stanza the headings that many of you see every eight versus then in your English Bibles are simply the consecutive names of the Hebrew letters and you know for for years before I knew a little bit about biblical Hebrew.
I wondered what those headings were now I understand. And now you do. Also, if you never knew that beforehand so I gives us a sense of the form of the Psalm and in the form alone causes us to respect this song for the greatness of the thought that went into it under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Whoever the writer of this Psalm is it is not designated for us in the heading Psalm certainly hear the echo of David in this Psalm.
Whatever we say about the form someone took a lot of time and put a lot of thought into this, even as the spirit of God was leading and guiding them in produce this wonderful form that we have in front of us moving from form to substance in substance. This Psalm is about the word of God is about the Bible is about Scripture. Each verse of this Psalm, in one way or another refers to the word of God. There are a small number of exceptions depending on how you interpret certain phrases maybe one maybe three maybe five exceptions at the minimum, 171 of 176 verses are referring in some manner or another to the word of God to the statutes of God to the ordinances of God and that unmistakable emphasis should have a great impact on our thinking about the word of God in its entirety and in the wisdom of God in the work of the Spirit of God in the collection of the word of God. Over time, the longest chapter in the Bible is about the Bible commentators have handled this all men in many different ways. The 1888 edition of Spurgeon's treasury of David devotes 398 pages to Psalm 119. And that pales in comparison to the three volume work of the Puritan Thomas Manton in his commentary. Steve Lawson devotes five chapters to Psalm 119 James Montgomery Boyce devotes 14 chapters to it. I have a friend in California who did 22 messages on Psalm 119, one for each stanza. And so there's just a variety of ways to approach this as commentators have shown over the centuries. I plan to do it this way. I plan to address Psalm 119. Not in a verse by verse method, but rather to address it thematically to highlight various themes that we see coming out of Psalm 119 that are dispersed throughout the song we want to gather some of these themes up in particular groups to see the emphasis that the psalmist is making throughout the song that might be lost if you went through it in a strictly verse by verse method.
The verse by verse method would be a wonderful way to study the Psalm were choosing to do it a little bit differently here today in a way that is validated by even the commentator Derek Kidner who approached Psalm 119 and a primarily thematic way so that's what were going to do so will have three messages on Psalm 119 to highlight three primary themes that Sandler the only themes say their primary themes primary themes that will have a spiritual nourishment for your soul and that will bring you to a greater perspective, a deeper perspective on the word of God. I do believe that these are three really essential messages for you and for the life of truth Community Church.
So three messages. What does Psalm 119 teach us about Scripture about the word of God. Well, first of all, were going to see this were going to see that Psalm 119 teaches us what Scripture is what Scripture is and that's the title for today's message what Scripture is Psalm 119 makes definitive declarations about the very essence and character of the word of God. And so it teaches us what Scripture is. Next will see that Psalm 119 teaches us what Scripture does what Scripture does. Scripture according to Hebrews verse 412 is living and active. It it has an active function.
This is not a dead book. This is not like literature written by dead men that has no real impact or implications for your life.
This book has implications. It's alive and living especially in the hearts of those who believe it does things to us and for us were going to see that what Scripture is today. What Scripture does and then thirdly and finally, if Scripture is what it claims to be in Scripture does what it claims to do. We need to understand.
Thirdly, that's that. Psalm 119 teaches us what Scripture requires what Scripture requires. The Bible is an immensely beautiful book. It is a multifaceted diamond of infinite worth. Picture having a a 20 pound perfect diamond in your hand holding it up and and twisting it 10 and and looking at it from different angles and seeing the radiance reflected in different ways. So in Psalm 119 we see different aspects of the brilliant splendor of Scripture for us what it is what it does and what it requires friends understand that the Bible requires a response from your life. Every man will ultimately be judged in one manner or another by what is revealed in the pages of Scripture. We cannot invade its authority. We would not want to. If we could and the Bible brings blessing and we would not want to miss that for anything in the world and so you can think about it this way. Psalm 119 will teach us to respect Scripture for what it is what Scripture is evokes respect from us.
Psalm 119 will teach us to rely on Scripture for what it does. The word is living and active.
The word is to be believe the word can be trusted, and as a result, we depend upon it as our very spiritual lifeline from a holy and loving God.
Thirdly and finally, Psalm 119 will teach us to respond to Scripture for its inherent excellence. We will respond to Scripture not just obey it in an external fashion but come to love it for its superior excellence and to give ourselves to it, and to love it, and to receive it. Believe it, obey it and defend it, and I proclaim it and asserted all these things coming from the very nature of what the word is what it does and what it requires from us. Psalm 119 casts a very wide net over our souls and every thought, every word, every action of our hearts is brought into conformity with the word of God. As a result of it.
So today we ask and answer the question from Psalm 119. What Scripture is. If you're taking notes that's the title of today's message what Scripture is going to answer that with five different points. What Scripture is or what is Scripture going to answer that with five declarative statements that tell us about the nature of the word of God its essence, what is it's very characteristic. What are the attributes of Scripture that we find revealed in Psalm 119 and I'll say this just in passing the attributes of Scripture are the same as the attributes of the God who spoke it into existence.
It's amazing the number one what do we say about Scripture in English what we say about the 66 books of the Bible. 66 books and no more. I always say that for a reason. 66 books of the Bible.
What can we say about them. Number one is this Scripture is the word of God. Scripture is the word of God and before we get to that in particular, we find Psalm 119.
Opening and declaring a blessing on those who live by the Bible. Those who believe the Bible look at the opening verses. Verses one and two. How blessed are those whose way is blameless who walk in the law of the Lord. How blessed are those who observe his testimonies, who seek him with all their heart, the Psalm opens with a proclamation of blessing on those who order their life according to the word of God. This is not simply coming to church on Sunday. This is not occasionally pulling a Bible down and reading a few verses and then putting it back and looking for later when you forgotten where you placed it. This is talking about a life hearted fullness of response to the word of God. The walk to walk in the law of the Lord walk is a metaphor for the activities of daily life and so this blessing is the starting point that frames his entire perspective on God's word and it's the starting point that frames everything about what follows in Psalm 119.
It's all in one manner or another. Reinforcing this opening blessing that is pronounced upon the one who gives himself over to the word of God and look let's just be candid with one another. Let me be honest with you. There are more people that say they love the word of God and give lip service to the Bible. Then there are those who have actually given themselves to it.
Aren't there. We know this from personal experience in people that we've known, and from what we see and in the church around us. Lots of people give lip service to the Bible, but it's one thing to tend to flap your lips. It's another thing to walk in daily activity in daily submission daily meditation to the word of God. The blessing is reserved to those who are full hearted in their response to the word of God and that is the starting point for Psalm 119. There is an obvious echo in the beginning of Psalm 119 to the very first song and I want you to turn to Psalm one so that you would see this echo.
Psalm one is about the word of God. Psalm 19 is about the word of God and Psalm 119 is about the word of God. One is short one is medium length.
One is long and 119 gives us a pneumonic device to remember these three songs and their emphasis on the word of God and so just as Psalm 119 opens up with this blessing the entire Psalter all 150 Psalms are introduced by the same theme of blessing, on the one who gives himself to the word of God.
Look at verse one and two of Psalm one. How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord and in his law he meditates day and night.
Do you see it there.
This is not a casual acquaintance with the word of God.
This is the dominating theme of the mind of the one who would be blessed by God that the mind is given over to a meditation consistently on the word of God day and night. It is coming back again and again in the in the corridors of your mind and it drives out worldly thinking. It dries out worldly preoccupations and elevates our minds to the wonder and the splendor of what God has revealed in his word, and so Psalm 119 open says blessed is the one whose walk is in the law of the Lord. Someone had already said that.
Blessed is he whose delight is in the law of the Lord and the promise of blessing there in verse three he will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither in whatever he does prospers. Now maybe some of you are here and your conscious of the fact that you've lived a mediocre Christian life and your convicted by the thought that this precious jewel of the word of God has been something that you have neglected, scorned, some maybe even scoffed at. Well let me encourage you that there is an opportunity for repentance for you here presented in the word of God.
You can change your thought change your orientation and look with the help of the Holy Spirit helping you look to the word of God and say from from this point forward. I want to change that emphasis. I want my mind to be in the word of God. I'm going to read the word of God going to hear the word of God going to increase my faithfulness to be under the preaching of the word of God.
This blessing can be yours, but you can't superficially fall into it. It is in a happenstance matter. This is something that you see this is something that you that you recognize the value of and you aim your life. After it let that sink in.
Look at it there.
Psalm one verse two in his law he meditates day and night. Psalm 119. Blessed are those who walk in the law of the Lord. Now a similar echo of the themes of Psalm 119 is found in Psalm 19 similar echo to Psalm 119 found in Psalm 19. Beginning in verse seven says the law of the Lord is perfect, restoring 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 see how it talks about what Scripture is and then what it does.
This is just as summary of Psalm 119 verse nine the fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever.
The judgments of the Lord are true. They are righteous altogether, they are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover by them your servant is warned in keeping them there is great reward.
God blesses God honors God rewards them. The man the woman the boy. The girl that gives himself over to the word of God and I invite you to come to the word of God in your life and give yourself over to it in that manner and say Lord I see the statements about what Scripture is. I see the Scriptures what the Scriptures do I see what Scripture requires from me and I want to give myself over to it. Here's a place for you to start take Psalm one take Psalm 19 take Psalm 119 and make those the portions of your reading in your devotion, day by day.
Over the next weeks and let your mind be saturated with what Scripture says about itself. If you need a turning point in your life if you need some direction on on how to get back from where you have strayed from it all isn't that an awful place to be. Having known at one point what the blessing of Christ is having walk with him in close communion and yet you find yourself days, weeks, maybe months later he say I live strayed and I've wondered from all of that in my mind is just clouded with darkness. As a result of my friends, God is gracious and the Lord Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit is gracious to help you come to the word breathe a prayer of help from the Holy Spirit to help you and trust him to reorient your mind because the blessing of walking in the word of God can still be yours today and in the days to come, and those of you that have strayed into darkness with with your with your lust with your anger with your gossip with your pride with all of those things.
This is a great invitation from God delivered to you personally today by his Holy Spirit delivered in in a sweetness of spirit from his word that says blessing is still open to just come back to the word of God because God blesses us. God blesses his people through his word.. End of sentence in the paragraph end of chapter in the book God blesses his people through his word and there's no sense in seeking his blessing and other places in other realms when he said how blessed is the one who walks in the word of God.
That blessing my friends is certain because the author is God himself.
This is God's word.
This is the word of God and so were saying that Scripture is the word of God hat. Where do you see that in the text itself will go back to Psalm 119 with me. Psalm 119 verse one just read it for what it says. How blessed are those whose way is blameless who walk in the law of the Lord.
The prepositional phrase tells us whose law it is. It is the law of Yahweh. It is the law of the God of the Bible the entirety of Psalm 119 connects the word to its author does it in many ways it does us in this in the expression, the law of the Lord is God breathed it. It is his very word to man, and it does it in another way that is not really subtle but it needs to be pointed out for you to appreciate it. The writer uses at least eight different terms to refer to Scripture and throughout the song as he speaking to God. He uses the possessive second person adjective second person personal possessive adjective.
Your and he speaks about it like this, your judgments, your commandments, your law, your testimonies, your statutes, your precepts, your ordinances, your word, judgments, commandments, wall testimonies, statutes, precepts ordinances were read Psalm 119 for yourself and look for those terms will find that there are scattered throughout the entire song in each of those nouns is preceded in many many cases by the adjective.
Your this is yours speaking to God. This is yours. This is what you have done. This is what you have revealed this is what you have commanded. This is what you have made no amen.
You know, when we seek blessing from God. We need look no further than his magnificent word and friend.
We are so glad you could be with us today on the truth Paul but with Don Green will hear the second half of this message. Next time, if you'd like to hear more teaching from Don. We invite you to join us at the truth, called the.com again that's the truth. Pulpit.com.
Let's all the time we have for today.
Take care and we'll see you next time you're on the truthful