What to Do With the Word Ps.119:9-16 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
In Ps 119 we find 22 sections identified by the 22 letters in the Hebrew alphabet. Each section has 8 verses. All but three of the 176 verses in this Psalm contain a reference to the words of God. The three verses that don’t [90, 122, and 132] each contain a reference to Jesus Christ, the Word of God.
In Ps 119:9-16 we find instructions on what to do with the word of God. We are to:
Heed the word – Ps 119:9 – if you will do what the Bible says [Jas 1:22], you will find that your life will clean up. Jesus said, “Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you,” [Jn 15:3]. And you keep it clean by continuing to heed what it says.
Seek God in the word – Ps 119:10 – when you search for the Lord with all your heart, you will find him [Jer 29:13]. And the place to search for him is in the Bible. That’s where a Japanese exchange student who lived with us found him. She searched every day for over two months and he revealed himself to her [1 Sam 3:21]. It was simple after that for her to receive Jesus Christ as her Savior.
Memorize the word – Ps 119:11 – not only will heeding the word clean you up, but memorizing it will keep you clean. But remember that the instruction is to hide the word in your heart, not your head. You have to get it down inside of you where it can change you. When the word is down in your heart, it will talk to you and guide you along a path that is pleasing to God.
Learn the word – Ps 119:12 – the best person in the universe to teach you the Bible is the Lord. Look at Ps 25:4, 5, 8, 9, 12. The Lord will teach you when you study [2 Tim 2:15]. The trouble with most Christians today is that they aren’t reading or studying the words of God. If they are studying at all, they are usually reading commentaries or books about the Bible. The most you will get from those is what someone else has to say about the Bible. That may or may not be something that God taught them. More times than not you are reading what someone learned from someone else rather than what God taught either one of them.
Declare the word – Ps 119:13 – we need to preach the words of God. Others need to hear the words of God so that they can be saved [Rom 10:13-14]. Certain people will receive the words of God better from you than from anyone else because you know them. You have sensed the Lord urging you to speak to them at some point. But, for whatever reason, you disobeyed the Spirit of God and neglected to say anything at all. Don’t do that anymore. God is counting on you to sow the word of God.
Rejoice in the word – Ps 119:14 – it is easy to get so tied up with making a living that we miss out on the joy of the Lord contained in the scripture. The Psalmist found at least as much joy in the words of God as he did in all riches. If you have never come to that place in your life, you need to dig in deeper in the word and discover its durable riches [Prov 8:17-19].
Meditate upon the word – Ps 119:15 – when you finish your daily Bible reading you ought to think, throughout the day, about the things you have read. Mull them over in your heart and mind. They will guide you. You will see things going on around you and will be able to understand them better. You will see them through what God said rather than through your own opinion or the opinion of the media.
Delight in the word – Ps 119:16 – in time you will find the greatest satisfaction in reading and studying the words of God. There is nothing in this world that can compare to the deep satisfaction of hearing from God, personally, in his words. I was talking to a fellow the other day who gave me a copy of yet another new English translation of Romans. He said, “This ‘un here talks like I talk.” I thought to myself, “I don’t want anything that talks like I talk. I want a Bible that talks like God talks!” I delight in the sound of his voice.
Conclusion: If you don’t delight in the words of God, perhaps your problem is the same problem that Adam had back in the garden [Gen 3:8]. He heard the voice of the Lord and hid himself… because of sin. Listen, you need to expose yourself and your sin to God’s words, like the Psalmist said, so that God’s word becomes your education, your meditation, and your declaration.