READ : Psalm 119:137-144
Your promises . . . thoroughly tested. (v. 140 NIV)
“Righteous” is not a word most of us use every day, though we may sometimes call someone else self-righteous. But it is a great Bible word. Indeed at the very heart of our faith is the mind-blowing offer of “a righteousness from God” (Rom. 1:17 NIV).
To put the meaning of the term in a nutshell, persons or things that are righteous are what they ought to be. God himself is everything he ought to be. He expects us to be what we ought to be: that is his law, which demands righteousness. Then he makes us what we ought to be: that is his gospel, which confers righteousness.
These verses focus particularly on the righteousness of God’s Word. And when the psalmist says that the Lord’s laws and statutes are what they ought to be, that is cause for celebration. He has found God’s Word “fully trustworthy.” It has been “thoroughly tested.” It is “everlasting” and “true” and “forever right.”
The very fact that he loves this word so much actually causes him grief. How can such a reliable framework for living, so tried and true, be so widely despised and ignored? Any believer with a glimmering of “understanding” (v. 144) should be, like the psalmist, both thrilled at what he has found in the Word himself and distressed that so many others are missing it.
Heavenly Father, give us the righteousness your Word demands and confers.