Come, my children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
‘When God does something special for you, tell somebody else. The next generation needs to know that God is alive.’ Warren W. Wiersbe: ‘With the Word’, p.330.
Derek Kidner gives verses 11-22 the title, Learn from me, (having entitled verses 1-10 Rejoice with me).
Alec Motyer points out that “I will teach” sets the tone for the remainder of the psalm, and over the next few days we will follow his helpful outline:
- ‘The secret of the good life’ (11-14);
- ‘The secret of facing trouble’ (15-18);
- ‘The secret of deliverance’ (19-22).
Having already spoken about the fear of the Lord David now says he will teach it. Derek Kidner points out that almost every word in the opening of this section is in the style of the wisdom instructor in Proverbs 1-9, with his fatherly tone and stress on “the fear of the LORD” as the beginning of wisdom (Prov.1:7).
The lesson from this part of the psalm is essentially that true good is to be found by living in harmony with God:
‘It is the answer to the hardest times (19f) and to the most ultimate questions (21f)’ Kidner, p.158.
The suspicion was raised by the serpent, in Eden, that human flourishing is to be experienced outside of the will of God. But not so. That is a flagrant lie. The brokenness of broken people in our broken world testifies to Satan’s dishonesty. ‘For best results follow the Maker’s Instructions.’ When we break God’s laws we find we break ourselves upon them.
Prayer: Thank you Lord Jesus that life to the full is found in you alone. May I never believe the lies that tell me to search elsewhere. I love you Lord. There is no-one like you. I have discovered for myself that you are “the life” (John 14:6).