Psalm 119:40
Behold, I have longed after your precepts: quicken me in your righteousness.
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(40) Quicken me in thy righteousnessi.e., Let the sense of thy eternal justice give me vigour and life. Or the thought may be of the invigorating influence of a complete surrender to a righteous law, as in Wordsworth’s Ode to Duty;

“I myself commend

Unto thy guidance from this hour.

Oh let my weakness have an end!

Give unto me, made lowly, wise,

The spirit of self-sacrifice.

The confidence of reason give,

And in the light of truth thy bondsman let me live.”

119:33-40 Teach me thy statutes, not the mere words, but the way of applying them to myself. God, by his Spirit, gives a right understanding. But the Spirit of revelation in the word will not suffice, unless we have the Spirit of wisdom in the heart. God puts his Spirit within us, causing us to walk in his statutes. The sin here prayed against is covetousness. Those that would have the love of God rooted in them, must get the love of the world rooted out; for the friendship of the world is enmity with God. Quicken me in thy way; to redeem time, and to do every duty with liveliness of spirit. Beholding vanity deadens us, and slackens our pace; a traveller must not stand gazing upon every object that presents itself to his view. The promises of God's word greatly relate to the preservation of the true believer. When Satan has drawn a child of God into worldly compliances, he will reproach him with the falls into which he led him. Victory must come from the cross of Christ. When we enjoy the sweetness of God's precepts, it will make us long for more acquaintance with them. And where God has wrought to will, he will work to do.Behold, I have longed after thy precepts - I have earnestly desired them. See the notes at Psalm 119:20.

Quicken me in thy righteousness - Make me to live; to live in obedience to thy righteous laws. See Psalm 119:25, note; Psalm 119:37, note.

39, 40. Our hope of freedom from the reproach of inconsistency is in God's power, quickening us to live according to His Word, which He leads us to love.

for thy judgments are good—The time must therefore be at hand when Thy justice will turn the "reproach" from Thy Church upon the world (Isa 25:8; 66:5; Zep 2:8-10).

After thy precepts; after a more solid knowledge and constant performance of thy precepts.

Quicken me; do thou preserve and maintain both my natural and spiritual life.

In thy righteousness; according to thy justice or faithfulness, which obligeth thee to make good thy promises. Behold, I have longed after thy precepts,.... After a greater degree of knowledge of them, and an opportunity of hearing them explained and enforced, and of yielding obedience to them; see Psalm 119:7;

quicken me in thy righteousness: in the way of righteousness, according to the word of righteousness, the Gospel, and with the righteousness of Christ revealed in it; and which is unto life, and quickens and comforts the heart, and from whence abundance of peace and joy flows.

Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: {f} quicken me in thy righteousness.

(f) Give me strength to continue in your word even to the end.

40. His will is good; but he needs fresh strength, and for this he prays on the ground of God’s righteousness, that attribute in virtue of which He must needs be true to His covenant-promises. Cp. Psalm 5:8, note.Verse 40. - Behold, I have longed after thy precepts (comp. vers. 20 and 131). There are those - few, it may be, but truly blessed - who "hunger and thirst after righteousness" (Matthew 5:6). Quicken me in thy righteousness (comp. ver. 37). Help my efforts to walk in thy righteous ways. The eightfold He. He further prays for instruction and guidance that he may escape the by-paths of selfishness and of disavowal. The noun עקב, used also elsewhere as an accus. adverb., in the signification ad extremum (Psalm 119:33 and Psalm 119:112) is peculiar to our poet. אצּרנּה (with a Shebג which takes a colouring in accordance with the principal form) refers back to דּרך. In the petition "give me understanding" (which occurs six times in this Psalm) חבין is causative, as in Job 32:8, and frequently in the post-exilic writings. בּצע (from בּצע, abscindere, as κέρδος accords in sound with κείρειν) signifies gain and acquisition by means of the damage which one does to his neighbour by depreciating his property, by robbery, deceit, and extortion (1 Samuel 8:3), and as a name of a vice, covetousness, and in general selfishness. שׁוא is that which is without real, i.e., without divine, contents or intrinsic worth, - God-opposed teaching and life. בּדרכך

(Note: Heidenheim and Baer erroneously have בּדרכיך with Jod. plural., contrary to the Masora.)

is a defective plural; cf. חסדך, Psalm 119:41, וּמשׁפּטך, Psalm 119:43, and frequently. Establishing, in Psalm 119:38, is equivalent to a realizing of the divine word or promise. The relative clause אשׁר ליראתך is not to be referred to לעבדּך according to Psalm 119:85 (where the expression is different), but to אמרתך: fulfil to Thy servant Thy word or promise, as that which (quippe quae) aims at men attaining the fear of Thee and increasing therein (cf. Psalm 130:4; Psalm 40:4). The reproach which the poet fears in Psalm 119:39 is not the reproach of confessing, but of denying God. Accordingly משׁפּטיך are not God's judgments i.e., acts of judgment, but revealed decisions or judgments: these are good, inasmuch as it is well with him who keeps them. He can appeal before God to the fact that he is set upon the knowledge and experience of these with longing of heart; and he bases his request upon the fact that God by virtue of His righteousness, i.e., the stringency with which He maintains His order of grace, both as to its promises and its duties, would quicken him, who is at present as it were dead with sorrow and weariness.

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