THE PROMISE OF GOD IS THE PATHWAY TO COMFORT IN TIMES OF AFFLICTION
What gives HOPE in times of affliction?
I) (:49) God’s Faithfulness to His Word of Promise
“Remember the word to Thy servant, In which Thou hast made me hope.”
God’s promises apply to God’s servants.
God has a perfect memory — will not forget His promises.
God does not raise false hopes and expectations that He will not fulfill.
Those who trust in God’s Word are never despairing (= beyond hope).
The word “Remember” has a rich depth of meaning in the Scriptures.
II) (:50) Power of God’s Word to Revive
“This is my COMFORT in my affliction, That Thy word has revived me.”
Believers experience all sorts of affliction.
We should seek to minister comfort to others — use the Word of God.
We need to go to the Word ourselves to seek comfort.
God’s Word is life-giving and sustaining.
The Lord has not left us comfortless. He has also sent His Holy Spirit.
III) (:51) Perseverance in Obedience to God’s Word Despite Ridicule
“The arrogant utterly deride me, Yet I do not turn aside from Thy law.”
Our faith is attacked in many ways.
cf. how Noah was mocked while obeying God to proclaim His Word and build the ark.
cf. how the media mocks Christians today.
Remember Psalm 2 — it is the Lord who derisively laughs at the futility of the scoffers.
Jesus has the truth; where would we turn if we turn aside?
God’s law is not burdensome to us but brings blessing.
We need to maintain our focus and not be distracted.
IV) (:52) Reflection on God’s Dealings Throughout History
“I have remembered Thine ordinances from of old, O Lord, And COMFORT myself.”
God’s words and ways are unchanging. He remains the same in His dealings with men.
We need to slow down to take time to reflect on God’s ordinances.
There is no comfort in the escapism of the world: through drinking, drugs, pleasure, work, etc.
V) (:53) Righteous Indignation against the Arrogant Rebellion of the Wicked
“Burning indignation has seized me because of the wicked, Who forsake Thy law”
The wicked are not a threat to us, despite their big talk and swagger.
They are on the wrong side of God’s law.
We are concerned that God’s law be upheld by others (as well as by ourselves).
VI) (:54) Eternal Perspective Brings Joy
“Thy statutes are my songs in the house of my pilgrimage”
We delight in God’s Word as we anticipate our heavenly mansion.
Pilgrims can endure hardship since they know it is only for a fleeting moment.
VII) (:55) Nighttime Meditation on God’s Character and Requirements
“O Lord, I remember Thy name in the night, And keep Thy law.”
When we wake up troubled in the middle of the night, we need to meditate on God.
VIII) (:56) Track Record of Obedience
“This has become mine, That I observe Thy precepts”
When obedience becomes second nature, that is the assurance of our new nature!