Psalm 119:17-24 (3rd part)

1650 psalter
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A pilgrim and stranger guided day and night by the Law of the Lord

If psalm 117 is the shortest, this is the longest. It is unusual in many respects. It is divided into twenty-two sections, so being commensurate with the Hebrew alphabet. Each section is prefixed with the respective letter of the alphabet, as also is the beginning of each verse in every section. It is thought that this facilitated easier memorising for the Jewish children.

Another peculiar feature is, that apart from two verses all the rest contain a synonym for the Word of God. So there is reference to testimonies, judgments, statutes, precepts, etc. The whole psalm describes devotion to, and persuasion of, the Word of God as containing all the principles of true religion and practice. Without it we have no light to our path, nor lamp for our feet; and by it, as with the book of Proverbs, there is given divine wisdom for conducting ourselves in all circumstances of life. One has written of v. 174, “Religion will decay or flourish as it (the Law) is our duty or delight.”

Pastor Jeff O’ Neil

Recommended Tune: St Paul

St Paul

Psalm 119:17-24

Gimel ג the third part

¹⁷With me thy servant, in thy grace,
Deal bountifully, Lord:
That by thy favour I may live,
And duly keep thy word.

¹⁸Open mine eyes, that of thy law
The wonders I may see.
¹⁹I am a stranger on this earth,
Hide not thy laws from me.

²⁰My soul within me breaks, and doth
Much fainting still endure,
Through longing that it hath all times
Unto thy judgments pure.

²¹Thou hast rebuk’d the cursed proud,
Who from thy precepts swerve.
²²Reproach and shame remove from me,
For I thy laws observe.

²³Against me princes spake with spite,
While they in council sat:
But I thy servant did upon
Thy statutes meditate.

²⁴My comfort, and my heart’s delight,
Thy testimonies be;
And they, in all my doubts and fears,
Are counsellors to me.