August 12, 2013
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
Let’s stick with Psalm 119 for this blog also. We will look at verses 9 through 11:
How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your
Word. With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from
Your commandments! Your Word I have hidden in my heart, that I might
not sin against You.
Every true Christian has known the struggle against sin in his or her life – because every true Christian has two natures – the old nature and the new. When we are born into this world, we arrive with one nature, the old. When we put our faith in Jesus Christ and accept Him into our heart and life, we are born again (see John 3:3-8 and I Peter 1:23). Being born again, we are given a new nature. Paul puts it this way in II Corinthians 5:17: “…if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” John says of this new nature in I John 3:9: “Whoever has been born of God does not sin; for His [God’s] seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.”
So the old nature is that from which sin is manifested. The new nature – because it comes directly from God – cannot and will not sin! And the struggle between the two natures goes on! Paul shares his experience in Romans 7:15 through 24. Here are some excerpts:
…what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do [the good], that
I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do….For I know that in me (that is,
in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to
perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do;
but the evil that I will not to do, that I practice….I find then a law, that evil is
present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God
according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring
against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to he law of sin
which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me
from this body of death?
Who shall deliver him? In the very next verse is the answer: “I thank God — through Jesus Christ our Lord!” Jesus – the Living Word – has made the provision to deliver us all! He paid the price to buy us back out of the slave market of sin (which is the meaning of redemption). The price was His own perfect life given in our sinful place!
The psalmist asked how he – or anyone – could cleanse his way to live a holy life before the Lord. The answer is in verse 11: “Your Word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You.” Two meanings come out of this verse, especially in light of what we know from the New Testament. When we have Jesus – the Living Word – in our heart and life, then we have the new nature in us He brings by His seed, the Holy Spirit, implanted in us. That gives us the potential of overcoming sin! But God-in-us needs to be supplemented, you might say, by regularly taking in and hiding scripture in our hearts. What The Word Will Do is feed the new nature and make us strong so we do not sin!
What is the best way to hide God’s Word “…in my heart, that I might not sin against [Him]….”? That is found in verse 10: “With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!” Seek the Lord with your whole heart! Seek His Word with your whole heart! Hide it in your heart by reading, study and meditation. Also include memorization of scripture! This seems to be a lost art, but if you memorize key verses – gems, if you will – you will always have scripture at hand, whether or not you have a Bible in hand!!!
What The Word Will Do – if you heed Psalm 119:9 through 11, you will find the struggle against sin greatly reduced and victory over it more often your experience!