Psalm 119:81-88 (11th 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 119:81-88

Caph כ‎ the eleventh part

⁸¹My soul for thy salvation faints;
Yet I thy word believe.
⁸²Mine eyes fail for thy word: I say,
When wilt thou comfort give?

⁸³For like a bottle I’m become,
That in the smoke is set:
I’m black, and parch’d with grief; yet I
Thy statutes not forget.

⁸⁴How many are thy servant’s days?
When wilt thou execute
Just judgment on these wicked men
That do me persecute?

⁸⁵The proud have digged pits for me,
Which is against thy laws.
⁸⁶Thy words all faithful are: help me,
Pursued without a cause.

⁸⁷They so consum’d me, that on earth
My life they scarce did leave:
Thy precepts yet forsook I not,
But close to them did cleave.

⁸⁸After thy loving–kindness, Lord,
Me quicken, and preserve:
The testimony of thy mouth
So shall I still observe.