Psalm 119:167
My soul has kept your testimonies; and I love them exceedingly.
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Psalm 119:167-168. My soul hath kept thy testimonies — I have not only obeyed thy commands outwardly, which a hypocrite may do for worldly ends, but I have done it from my very soul, and from a hearty love to them. For all my ways are before thee — I knew I was always in thy presence, and that all my tempers, words, and works were observed by thee. For this clause seems to be added as a principal reason or motive of his obedience, which was the consideration of God’s omnipresence and omniscience, and his desire to approve himself and his ways to God.119:161-168 Those whose hearts stand in awe of God's word, will rather endure the wrath of man, than break the law of God. By the word of God we are unspeakable gainers. Every man hates to have a lie told him, but we should more hate telling a lie; by the latter we give an affront to God. The more we see the beauty of truth, the more we shall see the hateful deformity of a lie. We are to praise God even for afflictions; through grace we get good from them. Those that love the world have great vexation, for it does not answer what they expect; those that love God's word have great peace, for it outdoes what they expect. Those in whom this holy love reigns, will not perplex themselves with needless scruples, or take offence at their brethren. A good hope of salvation will engage the heart in doing the commandments. And our love to the word of God must subdue our lusts, and root out carnal affections: we must make heart work of it, or we make nothing of it. We must keep the commandments of God by obedience to them, and his promises by reliance on them. God's eye is on us at all times; this should make us very careful to keep his commandments.My soul hath kept thy testimonies, and I love them exeeedingly - I am conscious of loving them; I feel an inward assurance that I do love them. 166-168. As they keep God's law from motives of love for it, and are free from slavish fear, the are ready to subject their lives to His inspection.Ver. 167. I have not only obeyed thy commands, which a hypocrite may sometimes and in part do for worldly ends, but I have done it with my very soul, and from a hearty love to them. My soul hath kept thy testimonies,.... The word of God, which he kept cordially and heartily; and in his heart, laid it up there; and with his whole soul observed the doctrines and kept the precepts of it;

and I love them exceedingly; and kept them from a principle of love, and not with mercenary and selfish views; and this love was exceeding great, not cold nor lukewarm, but ardent and fervent, love in the superlative degree.

My soul hath kept thy testimonies; and I love them exceedingly.
Verse 167. - My soul hath kept thy testimonies. In will and intention I have always been faithful unto thee; I have striven to keep all thy commandments. And I love them exceedingly (comp. vers. 97, 127, 159, etc.). The eightfold ש (both Shin and Sin)

(Note: Whilst even in the oldest alphabetical Pijutim the Sin perhaps represents the Samech as well, but never the Shin, it is the reverse in the Biblical alphabetical pieces. Here Sin and Shin coincide, and Samech is specially represented.)).

In the midst of persecution God's word was still his fear, his joy, and his love, the object of his thanksgiving, and the ground of his hope. Princes persecute him without adequate cause, but his heart does not fear before them, but before God's words (the Ker likes the singular, as in Psalm 119:147), to deny which would be to him the greatest possible evil. It is, however, a fear that is associated with heartfelt joy (Psalm 119:111). It is the joy of a conflict that is rewarded by rich spoil (Judges 5:30, Isaiah 9:3). Not merely morning and evening, not merely three times a day (Psalm 55:18), but seven times (שׁבע as in Leviticus 26:18; Proverbs 24:16), i.e., ever again and again, availing himself of every prayerful impulse, he gives thanks to God for His word, which so righteously decides and so correctly guides, is a source of transcendent peace to all who love it, and beside which one is not exposed to any danger of stumbling (מכשׁול, lxx σκάνδαλον, cf. 1 John 2:10) without some effectual counter-working. In Psalm 119:166 he speaks like Jacob in Genesis 49:18, and can speak thus, inasmuch as he has followed earnestly and untiringly after sanctification. He endeavours to keep God's law most conscientiously, in proof of which he is able to appeal to God the Omniscient One. שׁמרה is here the 3rd praet., whereas in Psalm 86:2 it is imperat. The future of אהב is both אהב and אהב, just as of אחז both אחז and אאחז.

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