45 and I shall walk in a wide place,
for I have sought your precepts*.
46 I will also speak of your testimonies before kings
and shall not be put to shame,
47 for I find my delight in your commandments,
which I love.
48 I will lift up my hands toward your commandments, which I love,
and I will meditate on your statutes.
* Through these reflections, those phrases that identify God’s word, revelation, or law will be highlighted in the text in the hopes of accentuating the many and varied ways we can visualize what God has given to us for our good.
An often under appreciated effect of God’s word in our lives is the development of courage. We don’t always make this connection. I think this is the case because we interact with God’s commandment in search of answers, rather than in search of wisdom.
The difference between answers and wisdom is that answers resolves one question. But wisdom prepares us to answer a variety of questions. When we become wise we learn to adapt and adjust. It is this ability that gives us greater courage. We no longer fear not having answers because we have learned how to find solutions.
This courage then makes us more resilient. We worry less about not being able to stand for what we believe.
When we have been formed by God’s wisdom, there are few challenges we have to fear.
Verse 45: The idea of walking in a “wide place” leaves the impression of a multitude of options. There are many avenues that could be taken, but because the Psalmist has “sought your precepts,” there is not worry of being distracted or detoured. However, when we seek God’s precepts, we see that not all available paths are good.
Verse 46: When we have internalized the Words of God, when we have been trained by God’s commandments we will be able to speak in the presence of kings an paupers and not be phased. The reality of what we learn from God is that it is good for anyone. Status is not a determine factor in who is worthy of hearing the testimonies of God.
Verse 47: The idea of “delight” is one easy to overlook. Whatever view of God’s commands we have will affect how we understand that benefit to us. If we have a negative view of God’s commands we will find little reason to delight in them. However, if we see them as a blessing, as a gift, as the way God conforms us into the image of Jesus, then we may see reasons to delight in them.
Verse 48: In this verse we have to references. One to commandments and on to statutes. As we have seen these are synonymous. It is interesting that with reference to God’s commandment the Psalmist is reaching out for them. And the reason for this is that they love God’s commandments. Again, consider the previous verse’s idea of delight should be kept in view. There is then a shift from affection to contemplation. The writer not only loves God’s commandments but will meditate upon what God has established, which is what a statutes infers. And so should we. We should love and meditate on what God has said continually.