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Thursday, September 28th, 2023
the Week of Proper 20 / Ordinary 25
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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 19

Garner-Howes Baptist CommentaryGarner-Howes

Verses 1-6

Psalms 19


Verses 1-6:

By Theology of Nature

This Psalm sets forth two sources of evidence regarding God: 1) First, through the testimony of nature, and, 2) Second, through the articulated Law of the Lord. The creation reflects, witnesses of the glory of God; While the articulate or spoken law is declared by David to be "perfect," "pure," "sure," "true," "clean," "right," and "righteous." Both the testimony of nature and the "articulate" law of the Lord render men without excuse for failing to receive and obey the call of the living God in their lives, Romans 1:18-20; Romans 2:1; Hebrews 3:4.

Verse 1 asserts that the heavens declare (witness of) the glory of God (Jehovah) and the firmament reflects the work of His hands, as a canvas reflects the character of the artist. This they do unceasingly, day and night, uttering testimony of the majestic existence of their creator and sustainer. The sun, moon, and stars bedeck the heavens as a grand cathedral. from which they declare the glory of creations creator and sustainer, Isaiah 40:22. One is not to look at these heavenly bodies and worship them, but to the God of glory whom they reflect. Every effect has an antecedent cause. The universe has its cause centered in its creator and sustainer, Genesis 1:1; John 1:1-3; Acts 17:28.

Verse 2 certifies that heaven’s luminaries continually utter speech, and continually show forth knowledge, without interruption or cessation, day and night, as they testify of their creator and sustainer, the true and living God, Romans 1:20.

Verse 3 adds that "there is (exists) no speech nor language, where their voice of silent eloquence is not heard." In the midnight hours, at the dawn of every day, and at the sun’s meridian height. The natural heavens speak forth a language that men in all nations understand. Their speech and song of heaven’s praise is an eloquent theology of nature that renders the world without excuse, of which some poet has written:

"The heavens articulately shine, and speak of their architect Divine," See Acts 17:28; Hebrews 1:3.

Verses 4-6 further witness that "their line," measuring line, as far as heaven and earth reach, goes as silent testimony of Divine glory, to the ends of the world. For in the heavens He has set a central tabernacle for the sun, as the center of the universe, a type or symbol of the "Son of righteousness," whose glory all His creatures should acknowledge and seek to reflect, Zechariah 1:16; Malachi 4:2; John 1:14. This sun is compared with a bridegroom coming forth from his chamber with full array of vigor, conscious power as an hero in his hour of full glory of strength, coming forth to take to his care a bride. He rejoices as a strong man to run a race, Ecclesiastes 11:7.
Verse 6 explains that this central creature of heaven’s luminaries is never still or idle. It continually goes forth from the end of heaven shining, giving light, never passing by day or by night, with nothing hid or concealed from its heat, light, or warmth, Ecclesiastes 1:5; John 1:4; John 1:8-9. Even so nothing is out of the reach of the love, affection, and care of the Lord Jesus Christ, John 3:16; Romans 2:1.

Nature’s Revelation of God is:

a) A full revelation.

b) A constant revelation.

c) A varied revelation.

d) An inaudible revelation.

Yet how eloquent is her voice, by day and by night, to those who "have ears to her," or heed. And cursed are those who have ears but turn away from the voice and call of the Holy God, respecting not the call of God through nature, to seek the saviour who may be found by all, John 7:17; John 15:5; Luke 14:35; Romans 1:21-24.

Verses 7-14

By Theology of the Law

Verses 7-14:

Verse 7 declares the Law (eternal principle of right and wrong) of the Lord to be perfect, converting or turning the soul, in conviction and conversion. And the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise, giving understanding to the simple, those willing to hear, Luke 14:35 b; Exodus 19:1; Psalms 37:31. This law principle works through the conscience of man, the memorex storage system of every man, to cause him to recall every principle of right and wrong, that he has ever heard, Romans 2:14-15. Thus through nature, the articulated Law that God first spoke to Adam and Even, and through the conscience, God has rendered and still renders sinners inexcusable for their sins, Romans 2:1. The Law of Moses was later given to describe how bad sin was, how abhorrent to an Holy God, and to show man the need of a sacrifice to take away his sins, even Jesus Christ, as related Ezekiel 18:4; Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23; Hebrews 10:4; Note: those who receive God’s word are made wise, enlightened by it, to the salvation of the souls of all who will believe, 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Matthew 11:25; 1 Corinthians 1:27.

Verse 8 adds that the statutes or "charges" of the Lord are right, causing the heart of the righteous to rejoice, 1 Thessalonians 5:16; Philippians 4:4. And the commandment of the Lord is pure, clear, or lucid, free from any contamination of error, "enlightening" the eyes, giving spiritual understanding, Ephesians 1:18; Psalms 12:6; Psalms 13:3; 1 Samuel 14:27.

Verse 9 adds further that the fear or reverence of and trust in the Lord is clean, pure, and hallowed in its precepts, without moral flaw, enduring forever; His wrath against sin is as holy as His love of righteousness. So His judgments are declared to be true, genuine, and righteous altogether, Deuteronomy 17:18; Exodus 20:18; Deuteronomy 5:25; Deuteronomy 5:24; Exodus 21:1. Holiness and purity of God’s precepts require holy separation for God’s people from the low, base, unclean, morally and ethically, for sincere worship and services to God, 2 Corinthians 7:1; John 4:24; 1 Timothy 2:8; Romans 12:1-2.

Verses 10, 11 assert that the nature and value of the law of the Lord is far above the value of the finest of gold and more soul nourishing than the finest of honey and honeycomb, to give sweetness and strength to the soul not found elsewhere, Psalms 119:72; Psalms 119:127; Proverbs 8:19; Proverbs 8:11; Proverbs 8:19. David adds that by the statutes of the Lord His servant is warned, enlightened; and in keeping them there exists great reward or great benefit, not merely future but also present profit. God is now the believer’s "exceeding great reward;" Genesis 15:1; Proverbs 11:18; Proverbs 29:18; Isaiah 3:10; Matthew 6:18; 1 Timothy 4:8; James 1:25.

Verse 12 inquires and appeals, "who can understand his errors?" his own wanderings from God, his failings, and his infirmities, except in the light of God’s law and revelation. None can understand these sin deeds of man but God. To Him the trusting soul cries, "cleanse thou me from secret faults," those not discernible by the eye of man, such as, covetousness, anger, envy, jealousy, hatred, etc. For no sin is hidden from His eye, Leviticus 4:2; Psalms 40:12; Job 6:24; Jeremiah 17:9. From these we must find cleansing, 1 John 1:8-9. An unknown poet has written:

Who Can Tell?

"But who can all his errors tell?

or count the thoughts by which he. fell? Omniscient God, to thee alone

my sin’s infinity is known! Do thou my secret faults efface,

And show forth all thy cleansing grace."

Verse 13 relates David’s prayer to be "kept back or restrained" from presumptuous, or deliberate sins. He felt that if his "secret sins" and "errors" were not cleansed they would lead on to deliberate, presumptuous, or premeditated sins, so severely condemned, Deuteronomy 17:12; Daniel 5:20. He asked that the Lord restrain him from permitting presumptuous or deliberate sins from having dominion over or making him a slave to them; Only then would he be free from the great or "very much" transgression, Hebrews 10:26-31. Such may lead to the Lord’s taking one’s life, as in the case of Moses, Deuteronomy 32:48-52; Acts 5:1-12; 1 Corinthians 11:30; Hebrews 12:9.

Verse 14 appeals to the Lord to let or permit the words of his mouth and meditations of his heart be acceptable or to "be a pleasure" in the sight of the Lord, whom he called "my strength" and "my redeemer," He trusted in the Lord as his rock, meaning his immovable hope, strength, and faithful one who would keep His promise, Psalms 18:2; Proverbs 3:3-5.

Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Psalms 19". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/psalms-19.html. 1985.
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