Psalm 119:127

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 127. Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold. As it was God's time to work so it was David's time to love. So far from being swayed by the example of evil men, so as to join them in slighting the Scriptures, he was the rather led into a more vehement love of them. As he saw the commandments slighted by the ungodly, his heart was in sympathy with God, and he felt a burning affection for his holy precepts. It is the mark of a true believer that he does not depend upon others for his religion, but drinks water out of his own well, which springs up even when the cisterns of earth are all dried. Our holy poet amid a general depreciation of the law felt his own esteem of it rising so high that gold and silver sank in comparison. Wealth brings with it so many conveniences that men naturally esteem it, and gold as the symbol of it is much set by; and yet, in the judgment of the wise, God's laws are more enriching, and bring with them more comfort than all the choicest treasures. The Psalmist could not boast that he always kept the commands; but he could declare that he loved them; he was perfect in heart, and would fain have been perfect in life. He judged God's holy commands to be better than the best earthly thing, yea, better than the best sort of the best earthly thing; and this esteem was confirmed and forced into expression by those very oppositions of the world which drive hypocrites to forsake the Lord and his ways.

"The dearer, for their rage,

Thy words I love and own, --
A wealthier heritage

Than gold and precious stone."

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 127. -- Therefore I love thy commandments above gold, etc. Partly, because it is one evidence of their excellency, that they are disliked by the vilest of men. Partly, out of a just indignation and opposition against my sworn enemies; and partly, because the great and general apostasy of others makes this duty more necessary to prevent their own and other men's relapses. --Matthew Pool.

Verse 127. -- I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold. The image employed brings before us the picture of the miser; his heart and his treasure are in his gold. With what delight he counts it! with what watchfulness he keeps it! hiding it in safe custody, lest he should be despoiled of that which is dearer to him than life. Such should Christians be, spiritual misers, counting their treasure which is "above fine gold"; and "hiding it in their hearts," in safe keeping, where the great despoiler shall not be able to reach it. Oh, Christians! how much more is your portion to you than the miser's treasure! Hide it; watch it; retain it. You need not be afraid of covetousness in spiritual things: rather "covet earnestly" to increase your store; and by living upon it and living in it, it will grow richer in extent, and more precious in value. --Charles Bridges.

Verse 127. -- I love thy commandments. He professes not that he fulfilled them, but that he loved them; and truly it is a great progress in godliness, if we be come thus far, as from our heart ,to love them. The natural man hates the commandments of God; they are so contrary to his corruption; but the regenerate man, as he hates his own corruption, so he loves the word, because according to it he desires to be reformed. And here is our comfort, that, albeit we cannot do what is commanded, yet if we love to do it, it is an argument of grace received. "Above gold" etc. It is lawful to love those creatures which God hath appointed for our use; with these conditions: the one is, that the first seat in our affection of love be reserved to God; and any other thing we love, that we love it in him and for him, and give it only the second room. Thus David, being a natural man, loved his natural food; but he protests he loved the law of the Lord more than his appointed food; and here he loves the commandments of God above all gold. --William Cowper.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 127. -- The world's assault upon the truth a reason for our loving it.

Verse 127. --

  1. The object of love: "Thy commandments."
  2. The degree of love: "above gold," etc.
  3. The reason of this love: "therefore," etc., because its object must ultimately prevail. -- G.R.

Verse 127. -- God's will versus the golden idol.

  1. God's commandments are better than gold.
  2. The love of them is proportionably nobler.
  3. The unmeasurable superiority of character they produce. --W.B.H.