Thoughts on “I will not forget your word.”

Yesterday, I mentioned the resolutions of the Psalmist in Psalm 119:15-16 as resolutions (or issues of repentance) for  every day . . . and the New Year also.  I also mentioned that I desired to return to some of the practical outworkings of these resolutions today – Christmas day.  But as Patrick Schreiner’s advice concerning brevity has continued to stick in my side like an irritating spur, so I intend to focus on one of those four resolutions, albeit briefly – “I will not forget your word.”

This is a striking resolution.  It is a negative resolve – a resolve concerning something that he “will not” do – he will not forget God’s Word.  Question: How do we forget God’s Word?  Answer: In a myriad of practical ways.  First, we forget God’s Word when in any given day we fail to take it up and consume it.  Secondly, we forget God’s Word when we allow our prayers to deviate from the biblical mold and its wisdom and light.  Thirdly, we forget God’s Word when the Gospel of Christ ceases to pour forth from our lips to others, believer and unbeliever alike; when our talk is no longer flavored with the salt and radiant with the light of His Word.  Fourthly, we forget God’s Word when we do not have a song of praise within our hearts and upon our tongues, for when the Word dwells richly within us, songs are the effect.  Fifthly, we forget God’s word when in life’s circumstances we lean upon our own understanding and take no comfort from God’s counseling testimonies.  Sixthly, we forget God’s Word as we are prone not to meditate upon it or memorize it or commit our Godward thoughts to writing.  Seventhly, etc.

But the psalmist resolved: “I will not forget your word.”

And thus, implied, is the Christian who knows the true sustenance of his life!  He knows his lifeline, his food, his light, his counselors, his strength, his weaponry, that is, his sword against sin and the enemy, his treasury and delight to be the Word of God – and how devilish it would be, then, to forget it as Adam and Eve did when confronted with the serpent’s anti-word. 

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, when he was weak, hungry, and being tempted to the greatest of degrees, being presented with the temptation to – by His divinity – turn a stone into bread and eat, thrust this sword into the belly of the enemy: “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).  Thus, the one who resolves with the psalmist is one patterned after the wisdom of Jesus Christ, understanding and experiencing the reality that man lives on the words of God – and, therefore, the resolve arises like a beacon of absolute necessity: “I will not – indeed, I cannot – forget your word.” 

Let us, then, remember God’s Word – remember it, to read it, to minister it, to sing it, to take counsel from it, to consume it and spit it out again in order that others might be fed.  Let us resolve, “I will not forget your word.”  Then it shall be intertwined with the DNA of our lives, drawing us closer and closer to the heart of our God.  May God be pleased, as he has written in Psalm 119:32, to enlarge our hearts that we might run in this way, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

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