176 Ways

Psalm 119:24

Lord, your decrees are my delight, they are my counselors.

Luke 2:46

Jesus’ parents found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.

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How honestly can you say that God’s decrees are your delight? Have you read Psalm 119 and gotten nearly bogged-down with the 176 ways the Psalmist extols the commands, words, decrees, laws, rules, and precepts of God’s word? After a while are you not at least close to the point of saying, “I get it. I get it!”

Just for the record, I love God’s word. I do delight when God speaks to me. But I’ve had those moments when those thoughts have entered my mind. I know better, but I have to resist the temptation to discount the value of God’s word.

Deep in my heart, however, there is a new man, created in Christ Jesus, who loves God’s word and commands. In my true self, created in Christ Jesus, I yearn to know and meditate on God’s word. It drives me to my computer every morning to write this blog. It directs my behavior and shapes my values in all of life. God’s laws, decrees, commandments, precepts, and words are my delight and my counselors.

That’s all and only because Christ lives in me. The boy Jesus in the temple perfectly embodied this love for God’s law and word. His whole life was given to loving God (the first and greatest command of the law), and loving his neighbor (the second one that is like the first). I still struggle with the temptation to neglect or devalue God’s word. Sometimes I give in to that temptation. But Jesus is my righteousness, joy, salvation and peace. I want to live by faith in him (cf. Galatians 2:20).

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