When was the last time you heard someone exclaim, “I enjoy obeying your commands, I love them!”? Yet, this is exactly what David says multiple times in Psalms. David’s unwavering delight in God’s Word is key to his relationship with God. From Psalm 119 (ESV), here are seven reasons to delight in God’s Word:
- The Word guards against sin. “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. In the way of your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches” (v.11,14). The Bible is infinitely valuable because it exposes sin that separates us from God so we can repent and return to Him. The reward of following God’s law is salvation and eternal life. Delight in that!
- The Word is wisdom. “Your testimonies are my delight; they are my counselors” (24). The Bible is an advisor we can trust. It is the friend we seek for counsel. We can confidently know that the advice we find in it is true and right. It’s a delight to be guided by the source of all wisdom!
- The Word inspires obedience. “Lead me in the path of your commandments, for I delight in it” (v.35). David also wrote, “incline my heart to your testimonies” (v.36). In other words, bend my heart submissively toward Your law, God, and “turn my eyes from looking at worthless things” (v.37). This is how we stay on the trail of delight.
- The Word is our source of delight. “I find my delight in your commandments, which I love. I will lift up my hands toward your commandments, which I love…” ( 47-48). Both duty and delight are referenced repeatedly in Scripture. Duty has to do with what is owed – what we ought or should do. Delight describes something different. Delight isn’t defined by what is owed, but rather by what is truly enjoyed at the deepest possible level. David pronounces delight as a far greater motivator than duty when keeping the law of God. We love the Word of God because it is the source of our greatest pleasure and highest joy!
- The Word softens our heart. “Their heart is unfeeling like fat, but I delight in your law” (v.70). We develop a deep sensitivity toward the character of God, the voice of God and the plan of God when we study His Word. Daily interaction with Scripture builds trust in our relationship with God. When we truly believe God is good and He does good for us in every situation, we wouldn’t trade His Word for “thousands of gold and silver pieces” (v.71-72).
- The Word carries mercy. “Let your mercy come to me, that I may live; for your law is my delight” (v.77). When we fail, the Bible breathes words of compassion and forgiveness into our soul. His loving kindness offers hope and restoration. God’s tender mercy toward us is cause for grateful delight.
- The Word strengthens in times of trouble. “If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction” (v.92). When we feel like suffering is going to destroy us, God’s promises bring comfort and hope. During a season of waiting for deliverance, God’s Word sustains us with joy.
Additional Study & Application
What difficulty with delight does Paul confess when he writes: “For I delight in the law of God in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members” (Romans 7:22-23)? How would you paraphrase these words of Paul from your own experience
Does Psalm 119:9-16 describe your relationship with the Word of God? What areas do you need to improve?
What would change in your life if you looked to God’s Word as the source of all delight?