Forever, O Lord, your word
is firmly fixed in the heavens.
Your faithfulness endures to all generations;
you have established the earth, and it stands fast.
By your appointment they stand this day,
for all things are your servants.
If your law had not been my delight,
I would have perished in my affliction.
I will never forget your precepts,
for by them you have given me life.
I am yours; save me,
for I have sought your precepts.
The wicked lie in wait to destroy me,
but I consider your testimonies.
I have seen a limit to all perfection,
but your commandment is exceedingly broad.
Oh how I love your law!
It is my meditation all the day.
Your commandment makes me wiser than my enemies,
for it is ever with me.
I have more understanding than all my teachers,
for your testimonies are my meditation.
I understand more than the aged,
for I keep your precepts.
I hold back my feet from every evil way,
in order to keep your word.
I do not turn aside from your rules,
for you have taught me.
How sweet are your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Through your precepts I get understanding;
therefore I hate every false way.Psalm 119: 89-104
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Is your classroom full of tattlers? Kindergartners are notorious for tattling. They are very aware of the rules and the disciplinary actions that occur when the rules are broken. They love to point out their peers’ mistakes. The world and its rules are very black or white for young children. They see things in the simplest way and don’t question the rules. Well, most of the time. Rules are good and they know it. You have classroom rules. Some are similar to other classes; some are different. Common rules include raising a hand when you want to speak, asking permission to leave, and respecting teachers and classmates. You may have your own individual rules that apply to the unique needs of your students. Nevertheless, rules are rules, and they are good.
God gave us rules too. These rules are the Law that was given to Moses on Mount Sinai, and they are still prevalent in our lives today. We are given moral guidelines on how to conduct ourselves from the Holy Scriptures. The psalmist in Psalm 119 praises God for giving the Law. The Law is to be meditated on so that one is wiser and not led astray. The Law is easy for sinners to hear but difficult to follow. Whereas we are not naturally inclined to listen to the Gospel, yet it requires nothing from us.
Verse 92 says, “If Your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction.” The Law is like a bright flashing stop sign. It flashes at us as we continue down life’s sinful paths. It tells us when to stop. If we did not know when to stop, we would crash, just as a car would crash if it didn’t obey the signal.
No one likes being criticized or told what to do. We like to do whatever pleases us whenever it pleases us. We quickly give into temptations and fall into traps of sin. Sin becomes so normal in our everyday life that we forget we are sinning.
The Law is written on our hearts so that our ears can be open to its teachings. We need to hear the Law as it shows us our sin. It convicts our conscience and makes us feel crushed by the weight of our sin. Once our consciences are crushed by the Law, the Gospel is sweet and comforting. When the Law lowers us down so we cannot pick ourselves up, the Gospel reaches out and brings us to Christ.
Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.