A few years ago I taught a course on systematic theology at our church. One of the things I gave the students on the first night was a list of verses from Psalm 119 (the Zabur) that speak about our heart and attitude when we study the Bible. Since I posted about how Muslims are taught to approach the Qur’an, I thought it would be good to post this as well.
Our Heart and Attitude when We Study the Bible
Texts from Psalm 119
God’s Word Is Greater than All Wealth and Sweeter than Honey
The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces (119:72).
Therefore I love your commandments above gold, above fine gold (119:127).
I rejoice at your word like one who finds great spoil (119:162).
How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth (119:103)!
God’s Word Should Be Our Delight
I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word (119:16).
Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors (119:24).
Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it (119:35).
If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction (119:92).
Your testimonies are my heritage forever, for they are the joy of my heart. I incline my heart to perform your statutes forever, to the end (119:111-112).
We Should Long for God’s Word
My soul is consumed with longing for your rules at all times (119:20).
My soul longs for your salvation; I hope in your word. My eyes long for your promise; I ask, “When will you comfort me (119:81-82)?
I open my mouth and pant, because I long for your commandments (119:131).
God’s Word Helps Keep Us from Sin
How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you (119:9-11).
Keep steady my steps according to your promise, and let no iniquity get dominion over me (119:133).
God Revives Us through His Word
My soul clings to the dust; give me life according to your word (119:25).
My soul melts away for sorrow; strengthen me according to your word (119:28).
I will never forget your precepts, for by them you have given me life (119:93).
I am severely afflicted; give me life, O Lord, according to your word (119:107).
God’s Word Makes Us Wise and Guides Us
Your commandment makes me wiser than my enemies, for it is ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers, for your testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the aged, for I keep your precepts (119:98-100).
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path (119:105).
The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple (119:130).
We Need God’s Help
Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law (119:18).
Give me understanding, that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart (119:34).
Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain (119:36).
Confirm to your servant your promise, that you may be feared (119:38).