Psalm one hundred and nineteen is the longest song in the Bible. It may be the longest song ever written and it doesn’t even have a repeating chorus. The Psalm is, “A Meditation on the Excellences of the Word of God.” The song is sold on the idea that God’s word is good and that it obviously emanates from a good God.
God’s goodness is a statement of faith of course. But it is not without awareness of the existence of evil. In Psalm 119 verse 68, the songwriter says simply, “You are good and what you do is good.” He is not in denial, about troubles, the previous lyric is “Before I was afflicted, I went astray…” He has known his own sorrows, and in this segment, he is actually asking for a remedy. He asks to be taught knowledge, good judgment, and the decrees of God as a bulwark against wandering into future problems.
It’s an old-fashioned idea, isn’t it? To think that the Bible might have the advice to keep a person out of the trials of life. But have you ever considered that God as your loving father might actually be giving you guidance like a good father or grandfather would?
The Bible is full of instruction and advice. The Commandments of God, for example, are a simple construct for good relationships. The first four are about relating to God, and the last six about relating to other people.
What would life be like if we all honored our parents, no one killed anyone else, no one ever lied, stole, committed adultery, or even coveted another person’s things?
Now that last one sneaks upon us! Coveting – or wanting someone else’s stuff, talents, or family is the most accepted commandment breaking activity in our world. And likely it always has been. It’s funny, I occasionally see an ad for something that I did not know existed and suddenly I want it. Seconds before I literally, did not know there was such a thing and in the intervening thirty seconds, I now want it for myself. That of itself is not coveting, it just strikes me as odd. It becomes coveting though when pride makes it a competition. When I think how cool it will be to be the only guy on the block to have …
We sometimes call coveting, “Keeping Up with the Joneses.” It results in judging my happiness by how I rank in comparison with others. That one thing has killed millions, think about it.
Can we remember that there is only one person on the planet who has the most stuff! And she has a giant storage problem and goes to bed each night thinking about security.
Lord help me to see the blessings I have and be thankful for them today.