The Bible is the greatest book ever written. It tells us how the world began, how it will end, and its complete history. It tells us about life and death. It tells us why there is so much wickedness in the world. It tells us of the love of God. It explains what sin is and why we need a Savior.
The greatest chapter of the Bible dealing with God’s word is Psalm 119. The 176 verses are divided into twenty-two groups of eight verses each. The first group of eight begin with the Hebrew letter aleph. The next eight verses begin with the Hebrew letter beth. This pattern continues throughout the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet.
Psalm 119:137-144 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness
“Righteous art thou, O Lord, and upright are thy judgments.
138 Thy testimonies that thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful.
139 My zeal hath consumed me, because mine enemies have forgotten thy words.
140 Thy word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.
141 I am small and despised: yet do not I forget thy precepts.
142 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth.
143 Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me: yet thy commandments are my delights.
144 The righteousness of thy testimonies is everlasting: give me understanding, and I shall live.
The Psalmist states that the Lord is righteous and His righteousness is everlasting. Then he states that the Lord’s testimonies are righteous, faithful, pure, truth, and everlasting. The commandments of the Lord are his delight and he will never forget thy precepts.
What does it mean to be righteous? Simply put, it means to do right. The standards for doing right are found in God’s word. Jesus Himself sets the example of what righteousness looks like. Love, empathy, mercy, and graciousness are good qualities.
We also see the examples of mortal men. Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joseph, David, Peter, Paul, and John, all lived righteous lives. Were they perfect, without sin in their lives? NO! However, the totality of their lives was lived in obedience to God and His word. When they failed, they repented of their sin, and resumed their work for God.
Do our lives exhibit righteousness? Are we living to glorify the Lord Jesus or ourselves? Does it matter?
It did to the Psalmist and should for each of us.
Tom Stearns, WASI Chaplain, 907 715-4001