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The Scriptorium

Remember to Not Forget

It's the key to standing firm. Psalm 119.61

Psalm 119.57-64 (4)

Pray Psalm 119.61.
The cords of the wicked have bound me,

But I have not forgotten Your law.

Sing Psalm 119.61, 62.
(Leoni: The God of Abraham Praise)
Though wicked ways constrain and bind my hands in sin,
yet I recall Your Word and turn to You again.
By night I thank You, Lord; my voice to You I raise;
for all Your righteous, holy Word I give You praise.

Read Psalm 119.57-64; meditate on verse 61.

Preparation

1. What was binding the psalmist?

2. How did he respond?

Meditation
Remember what we learned about remembering? That, in the Hebrew mind, it means continuous attention to detail with a view to pleasing God in all things. The opposite of remembering is forgetting. And the times in which we live want nothing more than to forget that God ever had anything to do with the world.

Here is how Christians must respond to the increasing lawlessness of our day. We feel bound and fettered by the cords of the wicked. We find many of their laws foolish and even repugnant, their entertainments insipid and disgusting, and their preoccupation with self and stuff, sad and degrading. Further, we feel the tightening of restraints against our freedoms of speech, faith, and action, simply because our way of life flies in the face of the wicked ways of our society.

We can probably expect this to continue, if not to increase, until it pleases the Lord to bring revival, renewal, and awakening to the world. In the meantime, we must not give in to wickedness, be it ever so widely practiced and firmly entrenched in law, or so ubiquitous in our culture. We must diligently attend to the Law of God as our foundation and guide in all matters, working hard, as individuals and a community, to be Jesus to the world. Wickedness and degradation may increase, but as Solzhenitsyn once said, “Let that come, if it must come, only not by me!”

As we keep God’s Word, the wisdom of God will stand out in our midst, and the world will not fail to notice (Deut. 4.5-9). We must remember the Law of God and practice love for God and neighbor according to its precepts, looking always to Jesus as the full embodiment of the Law, and the Guide for our steps within it. Devote your heart to the Lord and His Word. Fill your mind with it. Then work diligently not to forget it as you go about your day. Attending continuously to the Word of God is where keeping that Word is realized.

Treasures Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
Regardless. Regardless of anything and everything, we must remember to keep God’s Law (Ps. 119.61).

Joseph was bound by the cords of the wicked multiple times throughout his life. Yet he remembered, and was able to say in the end, “But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive” (Gen. 50.20).

Daniel was bound and taken from his home as a youth. But he remembered God and His Law. “But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself…” (Dan. 1.8). And because of his years of faithful obedience to God, King Nebuchadnezzar finally declared, “Now I…praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down” (Dan. 4.37). Then another king tried to end Daniel’s life, but he still stood firm, bound once again by the wicked, but remembering God and His Law. When thrown into a den of lions, he did not forget, and he lived to say, “My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you” (Dan. 6.22).

Paul was warned many times that he would be bound. Yet he remembered God. He did not forget Him or His Law. Nor did he forget the work that was set before him to do. “And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20.22-24).

Myriad of our forebears have been bound for the sake of Christ. They remembered and did not forget Him.
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls” (Heb. 12.1-3).

So much courage by so many who remembered and did not forget.

For reflection
1. What do you need to remember from the Law of God especially for what’s before you today?

2. How can you prepare each day to make sure that, the bonds of wickedness notwithstanding, you do not forget the Word of God?

3. What can you do to encourage your fellow believers to remember God and His Word and not forget?

the prophet assures us, that to continue to love the law, and to practice righteousness, when we are exposed as a prey to the ungodly, and perceive no help from God, is an evidence of genuine piety. John Calvin (1509-1564), Commentary on Psalm 119.61

Pray Psalm 119.57-60.
Devote your heart to the Lord. Get your mind in gear around His Word. Prepare to go forth into a sinful world with the light of God’s Word shining through you. How will you especially need the grace of God for this day?

Sing Psalm 119.57-60.
(Leoni: The God of Abraham Praise)
I vow to keep Your Word; You are my portion, Lord.
Let favor fill my heart; have mercy by Your Word!
When I think on my way, I turn my feet to You,
to Your path I shall not delay, Your Word to do.

T. M. and Susie Moore

You can listen to a summary of last week’s Scriptorium study by going to our website, www.ailbe.org, and clicking the Scriptorium tab for last Sunday. You can download any or all the studies in this series on Psalm 119 by clicking here.

What is the Law of God and how should we learn and obey it? Two books can help. The Law of God arranges the statutes and precepts of God’s Law under their appropriate number of the Ten Commandments. This book is an excellent tool for meditating on God’s Law and thinking about its application in our time. The Ground for Christian Ethics, on the other hand, explains why the Law matters and how we are to use it. You can order free copies of each of these here and here.

If you find Scriptorium helpful in your walk with the Lord, please seek the Lord, asking Him whether you should contribute to the support of this daily ministry with your financial gifts. As the Lord leads, you can use the Contribute button at the website to give with a credit card or through PayPal or Anedot, or you can send your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 360 Zephyr Road, Williston, VT 05495.

Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.

 

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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