Psalms 119:129-131 ESV
“Your testimonies are wonderful;
therefore my soul keeps them.
The unfolding of your words gives light;
it imparts understanding to the simple.
I open my mouth and pant,
because I long for your commandments.”
I love the Scriptures. Now not all of the Scriptures are to be applied specifically to our lives today. For example, we are not under the Old Covenant liturgical, ceremonial, sacrificial, and dietary laws and restrictions the Jews of the Old Covenant were under. And some instructions in the Scriptures were given to specific people at a particular time in history, and those same exact instructions don’t specifically apply to us, as well as the specific promises given to them may not apply to us, either.
But “all Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
So, what this means is that, even if the Scripture passage does not specifically apply to us today we can still learn a biblical lesson from it. Like for example the story of David and Goliath is a wonderful illustration for us in how to conquer our enemy Satan. We must not fear our enemy or think he has power over us, but we must take up the armor of God and fight off our enemy with the sword of the Spirit offensively, not just defensively. And we must believe that God has won and will win this battle for us.
Yet, we cannot twist the Scriptures to our advantage, either, assuming Scriptures that do apply to us do not apply to us. For I have heard many people cut out the entire books of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd John in the New Testament, claiming they don’t apply to us, and just because they don’t like what John taught the believers in Jesus Christ. We can’t just cherry pick the Scriptures we like and ignore the ones that go against the philosophy we are willing to accept. So we need to let the Holy Spirit lead us in this.
One of the big things with interpreting the Scriptures, besides being led of the Holy Spirit and not of our sinful flesh, is to interpret their meaning in their specific context and then in the context of the New Testament Scriptures, as a whole, and in the context of God’s Word in its entirety with regard to who God is, and he has not changed, and with regard to his specific will for humankind, which has not changed. For many false doctrines come from Scriptures taught outside their context and then are twisted.
So, if we are going to be those who keep (who obey) the Scriptures and the commands of our God, then we need to be students of the Scriptures who read them prayerfully and in their context and under the direction and leading of the Holy Spirit. And not only read them in their full context, but then compare them to other similar Scriptures taught in the other books of the Bible in order to give you a more complete picture. For just know that many people teach the Scriptures out of context and some do this intentionally and others not, but the danger is they may be in error.
Psalms 119:132-133 ESV
“Turn to me and be gracious to me,
as is your way with those who love your name.
Keep steady my steps according to your promise,
and let no iniquity get dominion over me.”
As humans we still live in flesh bodies, thus we still have the propensity to sin and to be led astray. We still could fall if we do not take necessary precautions and if we do not walk steadily in the ways of the Lord and in his truth and righteousness. So we must guard against ever thinking that we have arrived or that we are above falling. The New Testament says we are to take heed if we think we stand lest we fall (1 Corinthians 10:12), so we should definitely guard our minds and hearts against being overconfident.
And this is why we must also be those who cry out to our Lord to give us strength and help and encouragement to keep us from falling, and to keep us on the right path, and to keep our steps steady so that we remain in Christ and in his word and in walks of holiness and righteousness. For we can’t do this in our flesh, and we definitely can’t do this if we are playing with sin or if we are walking in the ways of this sinful world. For if we are consuming the thinking and philosophies of this world then we can’t have the mind of Christ, too, and we’ll be led in the wrong direction.
Psalms 119:134-136 ESV
“Redeem me from man’s oppression,
that I may keep your precepts.
Make your face shine upon your servant,
and teach me your statutes.
My eyes shed streams of tears,
because people do not keep your law.”
Now when we are walking in the ways of the Lord, in truth and in righteousness, and no longer in sin, our enemy Satan is going to come against us, and he has other humans who will do his bidding who will also come against us. And those professing faith in Jesus Christ who are still living in sin and according to the flesh may also oppose and oppress us because they find our walks of faith an offense to them, or because they are uncomfortable being around us because of our love for Jesus Christ.
So, when we are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, and for the sake of the name of Jesus, and because of our walks of obedience to our Lord, then we should call upon the Lord to deliver us from the weight of that oppression so that we can continue on in our walks of faith unhindered. And we should pray for God’s comfort and encouragement and for our Lord Jesus to lead us in his ways and in his truth despite all opposition against us. And we should absolutely be those who shed tears because people do not obey the Lord.
But no matter what comes our way, nothing can touch us but what God allows it and he allows it for a reason and he is still in control. And our Lord will give us everything we need to endure whatever comes our way, for he will not leave or forsake those who love and obey him and who follow him in truth and in righteousness. So we have no reason to fear our enemies or what they might do to us or when they might decide to attack. We just have to give our lives over to the Lord and follow him and trust him in every way.
I Know Who Holds Tomorrow
By Ira F. Stanphill
I don’t know about tomorrow,
I just live from day to day.
I don’t borrow from its sunshine,
For its skies may turn to gray.
I don’t worry o’er the future,
For I know what Jesus said,
And today I’ll walk beside Him,
For He knows what is ahead.
Many things about tomorrow,
I don’t seem to understand;
But I know who holds tomorrow,
And I know who holds my hand.
I don’t know about tomorrow,
It may bring me poverty;
But the one who feeds the sparrow,
Is the one who stands by me.
And the path that is my portion,
May be through the flame or flood,
But His presence goes before me,
And I’m covered with His blood.
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