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Proverbs 27:17

Proverbs 27:17

Monday, September 5, 2022

Psalm 19:8 (Daily Verse and Comment)

  Psalm 19:8

(8) The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. 
King James Version   Change your email Bible version

In verse 8, statutes means "mandates," "precepts," "rules," deriving from a root that means "engraved" or "permanent." Here, the word is used in a narrower sense than the two previous words, meaning "something appointed by authority." Rules or statutes are given to guide. It is interesting that the holy days are referred to as "statutes" in the Bible. Tithing is also a statute. They are things appointed by an authority and given to guide.

Tied to this is the word right, and interestingly, it means "equal," "just," "proper." The whole phrase teaches that the rules are not merely arbitrary appointments made by someone of authority but are equal and just in themselves. David is challenging us to think of any rules, statutes, or guidance commanded by any person or body that even comes close to matching what God gives as fair and proper. This is why they produce rejoicing as people experience obedience to them.

Think about this time, this age, in which we live. Federal laws already on the books (and more in the process of development in Congress) are gradually isolating the perceived enemies of the government. How many laws bring advantages to special interest groups and discomfort and hardship to all the rest? We will never know. That is the point that David is making. God's statutes are fair—always. There is not one iota of meanness in them. Love saturates every aspect of every one of them.

"Commandment" is another word that the Bible uses frequently as a name of the law of God. Like "statutes," it has a narrower application than the first two words: They are free from imperfection, stain, or any kind of corrupt tendency. That is why David writes, "The commandment of the LORD is pure."

If they are pure, if they are fair, if they cause rejoicing, and if they convert—why would God want to do away with a perfect guide for life? Is this not part of His Word? It is not "just extraneous material." How can people say they "no longer apply" to Christians? The thought boggles the mind!

The word "pure" gives the sense of brightness and cleanness, leading to the next benefit: "enlightening the eyes." The commandments give light so we know where to walk, how to walk without bumping into or falling over obstacles in the path of our life, going off the path all together, or never even finding it.

— John W. Ritenbaugh

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