Psalms 118:28


Psalms 118:28-29 says, “Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.”

        We’ve come to the last 2 verses of Psalms 118. Jesus is our God and we are told to do 3 things: praise, exalt, give thanks unto Jesus. What does it mean to praise? Praise has to do with worship. The word literally means, “to hold out the hand.” Its easy to see why exaltation and the giving of thanks are mentioned alongside praise: all three of these things have to do with worshiping God.

To exalt God means to lift Him. It means to put Him first and to put God in His proper place as King of Kings and Lord of Lords who rules with unlimited power and authority from His throne in heaven.

To give thanks for something means to recognize to God and to be appreciative and grateful for what has been given to you whether it is a physical blessing such as the food that you eat, or a spiritual blessing such as the opportunity for you to serve God. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

Now in the last half of the last verse of Psalms 118 we are given two reasons to praise, to exalt, and to give thanks unto the Lord. for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.

        For He is good. This means God is light not darkness. God is not evil. He is good. If God is good then everything that God does is good. This means that no matter what happens to you in life, no matter how horrible of a tragedy and suffering tricks your life you can’t point you finger at God and accuse Him of doing something unjust, unkind, unfair, or evil. God is good. Whatever He allows to happen He has a reason for it in the secrets of His eternal wisdom. One day it will be revealed why God let those particular tragedies and sufferings happen. And when it is revealed that truth will glorify God and show just how wise and great God is indeed.

        The second reason give to praise, to exalt, and to give thanks to God is for His mercy endureth forever. This is a great phrase because this phrase teaches us eternal security. When a person is saved that person becomes covered by the mercy of God. That flow of mercy never runs out, that flow of mercy is unlimited and unconditional because it is given to you because Jesus has clothed you in His righteousness once you have believed in His name.

Now we come to Psalms 119. Psalms 119 is Psalms which talks about the law. In coming to Psalms 119 we have to remember that it is part of the Old Testament. There is a difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament. John 1:17, “For the law was given by Moses, But grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”

So you can expect as you look as Psalms 119 its going to teach to live under the law. We do not live under the law any more.

Romans 6:14-15 says, “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.”

We are not under law but under grace. This is a very clear teaching in the New Testament. Even so we can passages in the Old Testament such as Psalms 119 and still glean from the verses important truths about

Psalms 119:1-2 says, “ALEPH. Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.”

Even though we are not under law anymore but under grace there are still benefits to doing what is right. But there is no curse if we fail. This is the great power of the grace of God. What you reap you will sow. There are negative consequences too sin. For this reason we should give our best effort to do what is right. There are other practical reasons of course for us, as Christians to do what is right. One of the main reasons is because Jesus died for us. Jesus gave His all to us and we should give our all to Him. God loves us and we can show our love for Him and we can also show our love for other people by doing what is right.

Psalms 119:1-2 says, “ALEPH. Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.”

These 2 verses go togther. Both of them say the person who does what is right will be happy and will have good consequences in their life. In talking about doing what is right the key phrase is the last part of verse 2 which says seek him with the whole heart.

Another way of saying it is the way Jesus said it in Mark 12:29-30, “And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.” When Jesus said this He was quoting from the book of Deuteronomy chapter 6:5.

If you want to understand just how great of  a sinner you are. Then go through just 1 day thinking about this verse and see how well you keep this commandment. You will find how little you love Jesus compared to how you should love Him for how He suffered for you and died for and rose from the grave and gave unto you the many spiritual blessings that He has given.

Psalms 119:3 says, “They also do no iniquity: they walk in his ways.” This verse is a perfect verse to use to show how easily people can take something out of context and teach something that the bible says. I mean look at this phrase, They also do no iniquity. Wait a minute doesn’t the Bible says in Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God?” Well then here are two verses in contradiction with each other right? If two verses are in contradiction with each other then the bible must not be true. O no! The phrase They also do no iniquity: needs to be looked at in the context of the entire verse. It is not that they do no iniquity it is that they do no iniquity who walk in his ways. In other words if you are doing what is right you are not sinning. This is pretty simple logic. But you would be surprised how many people do not understand that or get confused. It is not possible to be sinning and doing what is right at the same time. You are either doing one or the other.

Psalms 119:4 says, “Thou hast commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently.” This verse is saying God wants us to do what is right. But notice the word diligently. It is a word that mean vehemently. In other words there should be a passion and a desire and an eagerness in the doing. It’s not just what you do but why you do it. For example consider the law, “Thou shalt not kill.” There is a big difference between a person who keeps the externally yet their heart has great hatred and person who both keeps the law externally and in their heart loves their neighbor as themselves. Many people will follow that law, “Thou shalt not murder,” because they are afraid of the consequences of going to jail for the rest of their life. But in their hearts they are still hateful and murderous. They would murderer you if they could get away with it. God doesn’t just want us to do what is right God want’s us to desire to do what is right.

Psalms 119:5 says, “O that my ways were directed to keep thy statutes!”  The key word here is the word directed. In other words We need guidance. We need God to lead us and to guide us into truth. We need God to help us to do what is right. It is not enough to desire to do what is right. It’s  not even enough to know the law. You need the power of God in your life, you need the Spirit of God dwelling inside you to guide your life in the decisions that you make other wise what is going to happen is that you are going to fail. Romans 8:14 says, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”

Psalms 119:6-8 says, “Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments. I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments. I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.”

There are 3 great results mentioned in these verses, 3 great results that come about if you do what is right: 1 you shall not be ashamed, 2 praise, 3 God will not forsake you.

1. I shall not be ashamed. There is great shame in sin. This is something the world does not talk about. The shame of sin is one of the reasons that sinners who are unrepentant often are so angry at God and at Christians. It takes a certain amount of courage and a certain amount of humility to face the great shame of your own sins. When the testimony of  the truth forces a sinner to see the shame of their sins hopefully instead of becoming angry they will realize just how much shame Jesus experienced when He died on the cross. Oh there was great shame for Jesus. He was hung naked on a cross out in public for all to see.  He was nailed to that cross and spent the last hours of his life hanging there while people mocked him. Not only that but Jesus became sin for us and was separated from God the father. This is why He cried out, “my God, my God why hast thou forsaken me.” What shame Jesus must have known at that moment when baring all the sins of the world on His shoulders. You see this is the reason a sinner can face the shame of their own sins when they come to Jesus because Jesus was shamed for them. O How great it is to have the shame of your sins wiped away with the blood of Jesus Christ. The shame of sins can be a great burden that weights a person down. But Jesus can lift that burden.

Psalms 119:6-8 says, “Then shall I not be ashamed, when I have respect unto all thy commandments. I will praise thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned thy righteous judgments. I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly.”

2. The word praise has the idea of lifting up the hands. In other words if you are praising God you are worshiping God, you are reaching out to God with a thankful heart and with lips that speak about the great things that God has done for you. To truly praise God you have to have your heart right with God.

 3. O forsake me not utterly. What is this verse saying? Is it saying you can lose your salvation? No. In fact it is saying the exact opposite. O forsake me not utterly. Or you could say He will not utterly forsake you. There is a similar verse found in the New Testament. Hebrews 13:5 says, “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”

I will never leave thee nor forsake thee Jesus said. This is a great promise. Now what about the argument that this verse says, I will keep thy statutes: O forsake me not utterly. Couldn’t a person argue that you have to keep God’s statues or commandments for Jesus to not forsake you. You can argue that but its not correct to say that. Remember this is the Old Testament we are reading. The New Testament makes it very clear that salvation is by grace through faith and not of works. Can’t say it any clearer than that. 

Now there is a point to be made about staying in fellowship with Christ. One way of understanding it is by looking at marriage. When a man and a woman are married they are married. But even though they are married it is possible for them to argue to have conflict to not get along for the one to wrong the other and there to be a separation of fellowship until the one spouse comes to the other and apologizes and asks for forgiveness. And in that sense that is what this verse is talking about.

In other words it’s the principle of 1st John 1:9 which says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Psalms 119:9 says, “BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.”

This is a great verse. It teaches how a person can change there life, correct their life. Some go to a psychiatrist or to a counselor when they have problems. Of course people with several criminal behavior problems usually end up going to jail. Prison’s are called correctional institutions. But there more like living hell. Most people that go to prison come out worse than when they first went in. Now concerning counselors and psychiatrists there is nothing wrong with a person seeking help. But the best place to go for help is the word of God. The word of God can change anyone. The Word of God can help someone who is addicted to smoking quit smoking. The word of God can help an alcoholic quit his alcohol. There is no one the word of God cannot rehabilitate. All it takes is for that person to come to the feet of Jesus and ask Jesus for forgiveness of their sins.  Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.”

The word cleanse is a word that means to make pure or innocent. There is nothing more important in the world than for you to be cleansed of your sins. All have sinned and come short of the glory of God. One day you are going to die and when you do you must stand before God and be judged for your sins. Christ came and followed the road to the cross. He hung on the cross and died for the sins of the world and then He rose from the grave defeating death. And now all who trust in His name can find salvation and eternal life. If you do not know Jesus as your Savior you can  trust in Him right now and He will save you from your sins.


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