To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.
Prayer book Version, "Even upon such as keep his covenant." A distinctly Israelite point of view. If this be regarded as a psalm of the returned Exiles, the reference is a striking one. Judgment had fallen upon the nation because it had forsaken the national covenant. The restoration was a resuming of the old covenant relations. And therefore the supreme anxiety of the Exiles would concern "keeping this new, this restored covenant." It may be observed that the Lord's gracious dealings are always to be thought of as strictly conditional. "The blessings of the covenant are no inalienable right. Children's children can only inherit its blessings by cleaving to it."
I. COVENANT KEEPERS REMEMBER THEIR PLEDGE. It may have been taken by themselves. It may have been taken in their names by their fathers. It may be freshly taken after a time of lapse. It is a ground of obligation. It is a source of inspiration. It should be kept ever in mind. Illustrate by the oath of loyalty taken by the servants of a king; or by the pledge taken in marriage; or by covenants entered into by those who unite in a common undertaking. See the value of special seasons - sacramental seasons - when covenant pledges are forcibly brought to mind. There is a new covenant in Christ Jesus. It is to that covenant we are pledged; and that covenant we do well to keep in mind. (Some useful covenant reminders may be indicated.)
II. COVENANT KEEPERS AIM AT OBEDIENCE. Sentiment, however good, cannot suffice them. Feelings, as mere feelings, cannot honour God. True covenant keepers try to "remember God's commandments," his requirements under the covenant, with the distinct and full intention to do them, and not merely know what they are, or feel that they are wise and good. The Lord Jesus searchingly said, "If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them!"
1. Set forth what the Lord's covenant was for Israel, and is for us.
2. Point out how the responsibilities of the covenant may be kept ever before our minds and hearts.
3. Impress that the only acceptable keeping of the covenant is the constant, loving, hearty obedience of all its requirements. - R.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.