Praise the LORD!
Blessed is the man who fears the LORD,
Who delights greatly in His commandments.
The psalmist declares that the blessed life, or what we might call our best life, will stem from delighting in the commandments of God. The word delight means to be pleased with or even to celebrate or rejoice in. It might be illustrated with a child’s face as they see a stack of birthday gifts or an adult when they take the first bite of a favorite dessert. The word commandments is a broad word referring to the word of God but may specifically refer to the things He commands us to do or to avoid.
I find it interesting that the psalmist uses the word delight to describe his feelings about God’s commands since it is much more common to delight in His promises. When we are in a challenging season of life we often cling to the promises of God for hope and comfort. As I reflect over my life, even in recent days, I find myself clinging to promises of the love, power and faithfulness of God. In fact I would say that little that I have accomplished in life was done without clinging to His precious promises. My mornings usually begin seeking more from the grace of God and my days end resting in His abundant mercy. That said, the psalmist declares his delight, celebration or rejoicing was in the commands of God.
These commands are so important because they serve to keep us in line with the ways of God, out of sin and away from unnecessary suffering. Recently I had a conversation with a close friend who reflected back on a time in his life when he had drifted from the Lord. In his backslidden state he was considering making a major life decision that would have reeked havoc upon his family. In the midst of his struggles and although he was not currently walking in step with the Lord, the commands of God rung loudly in his memory. He found that if he was to make the decision he was considering he would have to do so by stepping over the warnings of the word and ignoring the voice of God. Fortunately, he not only obeyed the command but it became his first step toward restoring his relationship with the Lord and other relationships that had been broken as a result.
The commands of God are like that. They stand as road signs or speed bumps in our path to direct us away from danger and destruction and back in line with the ways and purposes of God. Often when I face conflict in a relationship I will have long debates with the individual with whom there is problem. Usually however these conversations take place in my mind with an imaginary opponent. I will build a case against them, convict them of wrong doing and even execute my swift judgment. When I finally settle down is when the Lord tends to confront me with His commands. A scripture will come to mind that will not allow me to think the way I am thinking or act the way I was planning. His word confronts my behavior and forces me to change. I wonder how much personal and relational suffering has been avoided by letting the commands of God redirect my life.
For that I agree with the psalmist and delight in the commands of God
Questions for Psalm 112
- In verse 1, “Blessed” means, “Oh, how happy.” Do you expect God’s blessings? Then we must revere Him and obey Him.
- Notice in verse 4 when we are overtaken by darkness. How is the Lord described?
- What is the Psalmist teaching us in verses 7-8?
- In verse 10, what will infuriate the wicked when they see it?