Two themes rise to the surface in verses 49-56 of Psalm 119. The first theme dwells on remembrance. The psalmist is not asking for God for some new promise. He is standing on an existing one. He is not saying, “remember all I have done for you, God,” rather he is asking God to remember his promise. As Christians we need to remind ourselves of the promise of the empty grave that once held our Savior! Because of Jesus’ death and resurrection we can experience the forgiveness of sins and have the promise of eternal life.
The second theme that emerges in this section is one of comfort. Comfort comes from knowing who or what you believe in.
A worldly person clutches his wallet and proclaims, “this is my comfort.” A drunkard lifts his glass and sings, “this is my comfort.” A man of God grounded in the Word of God testifies, “this is my comfort,” for he personally knows who it is he believes in. (Charles Spurgeon)
The next section of the Psalm (57-64) opens with, “the Lord is my Portion.” As Matt Chandler puts it, “God is enough, he is BIG enough!” We don’t serve an ancient, obsolete God. He is actively at work in the world he created. Chandler provides four points that highlight why God is big enough, even in times of suffering.
God is gracious and kind
The testimonies of God are faithful
God is always available
God has given us people of God as companions
(56) Remember God – how often do your thoughts dwell on God? Weekly? Daily? Hourly? He is a God who comforts.
(57) Remind yourself at least a dozen times today, “the Lord is my portion.” (God is enough, he is BIG enough!”
A random thought came to me as I was brushing my teeth today. My morning breath was quickly whisked away by the cleansing action of a little mouthwash and some toothpaste. Brushing is something we are supposed to do multiple times a day but when we fail to do so our mouths become dirty, our breath, bad, and our teeth susceptible to decay.
I was reminded of how things can spiral downward in our spiritual lives if we don’t take steps to keep our hearts and mind clean. One of my favorite scriptures deals with the issue of spiritual maintenance.
But if we confess our sins to him, he [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 John 1:9
Check out Natalie Grant’s new song, “Clean,” if you get a chance. “There’s nothing too dirty that You can’t make worthy. You wash me in mercy, I am clean”
Only human. This quote accurately portrays humans as imperfect beings vulnerable to failure. As we travel through life, it is clear that some of these human failures can be devastating. Thankfully, relationships we have made with others as we journey provide the necessary framework needed to make forgiveness and restoration possible. In matters with eternal consequences, it is a personal relationship with God, not a membership in religious institution that provides authentic hope for forgiveness and restoration of the human soul.
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. Hebrews 11:1 NLT