Praise Yahweh (Ps 119:161-119:168)

Shin

“Princes persecute me without cause.

But my heart stands in awe of your words.

I rejoice at your word,

Like one who finds great spoil.

I hate falsehood.

I abhor falsehood.

But I love your law.

Seven times a day,

I praise you

For your righteous ordinances.

Those who love your law have great peace.

Nothing can make them stumble.

I hope for your salvation.

Yahweh!

I fulfill your commandments.

My soul keeps your decrees.

I love them exceedingly.

I keep your precepts.

I keep your decrees.

All my ways are before you.”

Princes persecute the psalmist without cause, but his heart is in awe of Yahweh. He rejoiced at the word of Yahweh like one who had found great spoil after a victory. He loved the law. He hated and abhorred falsehood. He prayed 7 times a day, much like the later Christian choral prayers. He praised God for his righteous ordinances. He wanted peace for those who loved the law because nothing could make them stumble. He fulfilled the commandments of Yahweh. He kept his commandments, decrees, and precepts. Everything was laid out for Yahweh to see. So ends this section on the twenty-first consonant letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Shin.

The comfort of love (Ps 119:73-119:80)

Yod

“Your hands have made me.

You have fashioned me.

Give me understanding!

Thus I may learn your commandments.

Those who fear you

Shall see me.

They shall rejoice,

Because I have hoped in your word.

Yahweh!

I know that your judgments are right.

In faithfulness,

You have humbled me.

Let your steadfast love become my comfort,

According to your promise

To your servant.

Let your mercy come to me.

Thus I may live.

Your law is my delight.

Let the arrogant be put to shame.

They have subverted me with guile.

As for me,

I will meditate on your precepts.

Let those who fear you

Turn to me.

Thus they may know your decrees.

May my heart be blameless in your statutes.

Thus I may not be put to shame.”

Once again, the steadfast love of Yahweh sustains the psalmist’s love for the law. He recognized that Yahweh had made him. He wanted to gain an understanding of the commandments. Those who fear Yahweh would rejoice. He had hoped in the word of God. Yahweh was faithful. His judgments were right. His steadfast love had become a comfort to this psalmist as he had promised. The psalmist delighted in the law as he expected the mercy of God. The arrogant were to be put to shame because the psalmist was going to meditate on the precepts of Yahweh. In fact, he was going to teach others because his heart was blameless. He was not going to be put to shame. So ends this section on the tenth consonant letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Yod.

Yahweh saved me from death (Ps 116:8-116:11)

“You have delivered my soul from death.

You have delivered my eyes from tears.

You have delivered my feet from stumbling.

I walk before Yahweh

In the land of the living.

I kept my faith,

Even when I said,

‘I am greatly afflicted.’

I said in my consternation.

‘Everyone is a liar.’”

Yahweh had been good to the psalmist. He had kept his soul from death. He kept his eyes from tearing up. He had kept his feet from stumbling. Therefore he was going to walk in the land of the living with Yahweh. He had kept his faith even though he admitted that he was greatly afflicted. He called everyone a liar since he trusted in God.

Yahweh is gracious (Ps 116:5-116:7)

“Gracious is Yahweh!

Righteous is Yahweh!

Our God is merciful!

Yahweh protects the simple.

When I was brought low,

He saved me.

Return!

O my soul!

To your rest!

Yahweh has dealt bountifully with you.”

Then the psalmist addressed God directly but yet at the same time talking about him. Yahweh is gracious, righteous, and merciful. His God, Yahweh protects the simple. When he was in a bad situation, Yahweh saved him. He wanted his soul to return to peace and rest.

How long will Yahweh wait? (Ps 79:5-79:7)

“How long?

Yahweh?

Will you be angry forever?

Will your jealous wrath burn like fire?

Pour out your anger on the nations

That do not know you!

Pour out your anger on the kingdoms

That do not call on your name!

They have devoured Jacob.

They have laid waste his habitation.”

How long will Yahweh wait? Will he be angry forever? Will the wrath of his jealous anger burn like a fire? Rather, the psalmist wants Yahweh to pour out his anger on the nations and kingdoms that do not know him or do not call on his name. They are the ones who devoured Jacob or Israel as they laid waste to their living spaces.

The righteous rejoice (Ps 75:9-75:10)

“But I will rejoice forever!

I will sing praises

To the God of Jacob.

All the horns of the wicked

I will cut off.

However the horns of the righteous

Shall be exalted.”

This psalm ends with the psalmist rejoicing forever. He would sing praises to the God of Jacob. On the other hand, the symbolic horns of power of the wicked would be cut off. Meanwhile the horns of power of the righteous would be exalted.

God will help me in my troubles (Ps 71:19-71:21)

“O God!

You have done great things!

Who is like you?

You have made me

See many troubles!

You have made me

See many calamities!

You will revive me again!

From the depths of the earth

You will bring me up again!

You will increase my honor!

You will comfort me once again!”

God has done great things. There is no one like God. He led the psalmist into many troubles and calamities, but he always revived him. He brought him back from the depths of the earth. God will do so again. God will increase his honor. He will comfort him as he had done in the past.