Daily Devotional – Psalms 145-160 (Day 20)


Today we are going to cover two sections together.  I am doing this, partly to make up for the day I missed, and partly because the subject matter is the same.  The psalmist is in a state of great sorrow and affliction. As we will see, he is not even sleeping at night because of his situation.  Lest we should grow tired of the subject of affliction, it might do us good to recognize that there are many Christians facing such situations today. Many who could not fall asleep, and many more who woke in the middle of the night to think about their troubles.  If we are not currently facing such a situation, we should be prepared to offer encouragement to those who are.

Section 19-20 (KOPH/RESH)

Psalms 119:145-160 I cried with my whole heart; hear me, O LORD: I will keep thy statutes.

I cried unto thee; save me, and I shall keep thy testimonies.

I prevented the dawning of the morning, and cried: I hoped in thy word.

Mine eyes prevent the night watches, that I might meditate in thy word.

Hear my voice according unto thy lovingkindness: O LORD, quicken me according to thy judgment.

They draw nigh that follow after mischief: they are far from thy law.

Thou art near, O LORD; and all thy commandments are truth.

Concerning thy testimonies, I have known of old that thou hast founded them for ever.

 Consider mine affliction, and deliver me: for I do not forget thy law.

Plead my cause, and deliver me: quicken me according to thy word.

Salvation is far from the wicked: for they seek not thy statutes.

Great are thy tender mercies, O LORD: quicken me according to thy judgments.

Many are my persecutors and mine enemies; yet do I not decline from thy testimonies.

I beheld the transgressors, and was grieved; because they kept not thy word.

Consider how I love thy precepts: quicken me, O LORD, according to thy lovingkindness.

Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

This passage opens with the declaration that the psalmist has come to the Lord, crying unto Him for help. He says that he has cried unto the Lord with his whole heart.  This is interesting.

Whole-heartedness is something that the Lord is interested in our lives.  He never asks for half measures where we are concerned.  Sometime, it would be instructive to do a study on the many verses where the term “whole heart” is used.

The psalmist’s use of this term causes me to wonder what he is referring to. (Or for you grammar police…to what he is referring.)  Haha!

He could be referring to the fact that the cry is consuming him. His troubles are taking all of his thoughts and energies.

This is a possibility, but more likely he is referring to the fact that he is coming whole-heartedly to God with his problems.  He is not coming for a quote from God.  He is committing himself completely to Him.

1Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

We are not to cast some of our care, but all of our care.  We are not to hedge our bets in the event God cannot help us.  We are bring our troubles to Him, committing ourselves completely to Him.

Lord, you are my help.  You are my only help.  I have no one else to whom I am willing to look for help.  It’s You Lord.  It’s only You.”

We can see that the psalmist’s troubles were keeping him up at night.  Verses 147-148 use the word “prevent.”  This word does not mean to stop something from happening, as of course that would not be possible in this case.  The word “prevent” means to come before.  The psalmist was saying that he was awake before the dawn crying unto God.  Verse 48 says that he was already away before the night watches.

So he was awake far into the night, and awake well before the dawn.  Have you ever had that kind of week?  Or month?  Or year?

We see from reading the passage before us that the causes of this trouble were his adversaries.  He had no strength to meet them.  They were overwhelming him.  Therefore, he does the only thing he can do, and the one thing that we must learn to do.  He pleads with God, on the basis of His Word, to come to his aid.

He asks God, in verse 149, to give him strength. (quicken me…)

In verses 150 and 151 he acknowledges two things.  The first is that his enemies are drawing nearer to him.  His troubles are piling up. The second is that God is near to him.  This we must always remember.

Psalms 46:1  To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, A Song upon AlamothGod is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

In verses 153-154 he request God to fight for him.  He says that he is leaving his trouble in God’s hands, and asks for deliverance.

As we read the rest of the passage we see him again acknowledging that God’s Word has proven faithful in the past, and he believes it is faithful still.  He further acknowledges that, although his enemies are many, he will not abandon his faith in God or His word.

Evil is not an argument against the truth of God, but rather a reason for us to draw closer to Him who is the only source of truth and deliverance.

With confidence we say what the psalmist says in the final verse of this passage.

Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

Heavenly Father, I pray today for those dear people who have been awake since well before dawn, whose hearts are burdened with trouble.  I pray, Lord, that they would turn their hearts to you and cry out to you for deliverance, and that you would be pleased to hear them.  Father, we so often become overwhelmed.  You are our only refuge, and I thank you that your Word tells us that you are very near to us in times of trouble.  Be near to them now.  In Jesus name, amen.

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