13 By my lips I declare
all the just decrees of Your mouth.
14 Blissful, I exult in the way of Your testimonies
as over all riches.
15 Bound to Your precepts I meditate
and I fix my eyes on Your ways.
16 Boundlessly I will delight in your statutes;
I will not forget your word.
Verses 13-16 “Celebrating Blessings”
It comes out of the deep relationship (the deep connection) with God. It comes to us through His words and promises. And remember that the Word of God became flesh, and in Him are gathered all the promises of God.
Out of this comes the celebration and praise. Jesus said to His disciples on the way to the cross, “I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.” (John 16:22) It is a joy founded and built on the work of Jesus. So:
By my lips I declare
Blissful I exult
I fix my eyes . . .
The wondrous works, the amazing ways of God come together and they are the story of salvation. These are the testimonies of God – the telling of all that God has done from the beginnings of the promise (Genesis 3:15); to the amazing pictures in Genesis 22; Exodus 12; Leviticus 14; Isaiah 51; to the story of Jesus entering our world (Luke 1-2). And then the Testimonies of God come to us in the preaching of Jesus, from the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7); to the words of Jesus before the Council and Pilate . . . and on the Cross: “Father, forgive them” . . . “Today you shall be with Me in paradise” . . . “It is finished.” And then the testimonies of God call us into the joy of Easter in the garden (John 20), on the Emmaus road (Luke 24) and in the upper room (Luke 24 and John 20). These are so clearly the testimonies of God that the onlookers in Acts 2 said “We hear them telling . . . the mighty works of God.”
This is the one story – the word of God calling to us in Jesus is where God is bringing all our stories together – gathering us together within “the mighty acts of God,” the story of Jesus To have and to know Jesus is worth more than all other riches. Celebrate! Sing for joy! Maybe even dance! You have everything in Jesus because of the cross and empty tomb! That is why we are right there with the psalmist:
(v. 13) By our lips we declare all the just decrees of Your mouth – because Your words declare that I am justified, made holy by Jesus and all that He has done.
(v. 14) Blissful, we exult in the way of Your testimonies as over all riches – they are our true riches; riches of life and blessings forever.
(v. 15) Bound to Your precepts we meditate – we want to think on and ponder and hold in our souls what You have decided and set down.
(v. 15) We fix our eyes on Your ways – focused in on what You have done and how You have done it.
(v. 16) Boundlessly we delight in Your statutes – being taught by God is beyond compare; learning from Jesus is better than anything else.
So it should go without saying that we will not forget Your word – because of all that Your Word is to us. But we are who we are. Lord, by Your Spirit keep Your word in our hearts and minds.
What more is there to say? The delight in God’s word and His teaching knows no bounds. There is no limit. The blessings, the joy, the peace, the life and everything else. The celebration is endless as God’s walk with us is endless. How could we; how would we ever forget His word?
Lord, fill my heart, my eyes, my thoughts and my words with the joy of Your blessings; with exulting in the gift of life, peace and forgiveness in Jesus; with the wonder of the blessings to come; and with the sweetness of Your ways of walking with me. Amen.
Rev. Mark Willig
Pastor Willig is pastor emeritus of Friends in Christ Lutheran Church.