Psalm 119:101
I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep your word.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Psalm 119:101-102. I have refrained, &c., from every evil way — Every way which either is evil, or leads to evil; sin, and the temptations or occasions of sin; that I might keep thy word — Not for any worldly or carnal reasons, as some men abstain from divers sins for their credit or advantage: but out of pure respect to thy word; for thou hast taught me — Namely, by thy blessed Spirit illuminating my mind, and working in my heart, which other teachers cannot do.119:97-104 What we love, we love to think of. All true wisdom is from God. A good man carries his Bible with him, if not in his hands, yet in his head and in his heart. By meditation on God's testimonies we understand more than our teachers, when we understand our own hearts. The written word is a more sure guide to heaven, than all the fathers, the teachers, and ancients of the church. We cannot, with any comfort or boldness, attend God in holy duties, while under guilt, or in any by-way. It was Divine grace in his heart, that enabled the psalmist to receive these instructions. The soul has its tastes as well as the body. Our relish for the word of God will be greatest, when that for the world and the flesh is least. The way of sin is a wrong way; and the more understanding we get by the precepts of God, the more rooted will be our hatred of sin; and the more ready we are in the Scriptures, the better furnished we are with answers to temptation.I have refrained my feet from every evil way - I have walked in the path which thy law marks out. I have avoided the way of wickedness, and have not yielded to the seductions of a sinful life.

That I might keep thy word - I have avoided all those allurements which would turn me from obedience, and which would prevent a right observance of thy commands. This indicates a purpose and a desire to keep the law of God, and shows the method which he adopted in order to do this. That method was to guard against everything which would turn him from obedience; it was, to make obedience to the law of God the great aim of the life.

101-104. Avoidance of sinful courses is both the effect and means of increasing in divine knowledge (compare Ps 19:10).Ver. 101. Evil way; or, way of evil; which either is evil, or leads to it; sin, and the temptations or occasions of sin.

That, I might keep thy word; I did this not for any carnal reasons, as some men abstain from divers sins for their credit or advantage, but out of pure respect to thy word. I have refrained my feet from every evil way,.... Of error or immorality, forbidden and condemned by the word of God; every way that is evil in itself, or leads to evil, and in which evil men walk; and though there may be many snares and temptations to walk in such a way, yet a good man cannot allow himself to walk therein, as others do; he has not so learned the word of God; he is under the influence of divine grace, and withholds himself from it; he abstains from all appearance of evil, and lays a restraint, as upon his mouth and lips, so upon his feet, or guards his walk and conversation. This shows, that as David had an affection for the word of God, and made great proficiency in knowledge by it; so it had an influence on his life and conversation, and his knowledge appeared to be not merely speculative, but practical: his end, in laying such a restraint upon his feet, was not out of vain glory, and to gain popular applause nor through fear of losing his credit among men, nor of the wrath of God; but out of love to God, and to his word, as follows:

that I might keep thy word; such was his love to it, and his regard to the honour of it; considering whose word it was, and with whose authority it was clothed, and whose glory was concerned therein; that he was careful to walk according to it, and in the way that directed to, and shun every other way.

I have refrained my feet from every evil way, that I might keep thy word.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
101. The meaning may be either, that he has studiously avoided all places of temptation in order that he might observe the law, or, that the self-restraint which has marked his conduct has sprung from no lower aim than the desire to obey God.Verse 101. - I have refrained my feet from every evil way. This had been the psalmist's intention and endeavor, but he had not always succeeded in carrying it out (see vers. 67, 176). That I might keep thy Word. God's Word is not kept by such as allow themselves in any evil way. The eightfold Lamed. Eternal and imperishable in the constant verifying of itself is the vigorous and consolatory word of God, to which the poet will ever cling. It has heaven as its standing-place, and therefore it also has the qualities of heaven, and before all others, heaven-like stability. Psalm 89 (Psalm 89:3) uses similar language in reference to God's faithfulness, of which here Psalm 119:90 says that it endureth into all generations. The earth hath He creatively set up, and it standeth, viz., as a practical proof and as a scene of His infinite, unchangeable faithfulness. Heaven and earth are not the subjects of Psalm 119:91 (Hupfeld), for only the earth is previously mentioned; the reference to the heavens in Psalm 119:89 is of a very different character. Hitzig and others see the subject in למשׁפּטיך: with respect to Thy judgments, they stand fast unto this day; but the עבדיך which follows requires another meaning to be assigned to עמדוּ: either of taking up one's place ready for service, or, since עמד למשׁפט is a current phrase in Numbers 35:12; Joshua 20:6; Ezekiel 44:24, of placing one's self ready to obey (Bttcher). The subject of עמדוּ, as the following הכּל shows, is meant to be thought of in the most general sense (cf. Job 38:14): all beings are God's servants (subjects), and have accordingly to be obedient and humble before His judicial decisions - היּום, "even to this day," the poet adds, for these judicial decisions are those which are formulated beforehand in the Tra. Joy in this ever sure, all-conditioning word has upheld the poet in his affliction, Psalm 119:92. He who has been persecuted and cast down as it were to death, owes his reviving to it, Psalm 119:93. From Him whose possession or property he is in faith and love he also further looks for his salvation, Psalm 119:94. Let evil-doers lie in wait for him (קוּוּ in a hostile sense, as in Psalm 56:7, קוּה, cf. חכּה, going back to קוה, Arab. qawiya, with the broad primary signification, to be tight, firm, strong) to destroy him, he meditates on God's testimonies. He knows from experience that all (earthly) perfection (תּכלה) has an end (inasmuch as, having reached its height, it changes into its opposite); God's commandment (singular as in Deuteronomy 11:22), on the contrary, is exceeding broad (cf. Job 11:9), unlimited in its duration and verification.
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