Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Lifting up your hands

Verse. 48. Thy commandments. By commandments he understandeth the word of God, yet it is more powerful than so; it is not, I have loved thy word; but, I have loved that part of thy word that is thy "commandments," the mandatory part. There are some parts of the will and word of God that even ungodly men will be content to love. There is the promissory part; all men gather and catch at the promises, and show love to these. The reason is clear; there is pleasure, and profit, and gain, and advantage in the promises; but a pious soul doth not only look to the promises, but to the commands. Piety looks on Christ as a Lawgiver, as well as a Saviour, and not only on him as a Mediator, but as a Lord and Master; it doth not only live by faith, but it liveth by rule; it makes indeed the promises the stay and staff of a Christian's life, but it makes the commandments of God the level. A pious heart knows that some command is implied in the qualification and condition of every promise; it knows that as for the fulfilling of the promises, it belongs to God; but the fulfilling of the commands belongs to us. Therefore it looks so, upon the enjoying of that which is promised that it will first do that which is commanded. There is no hope of attaining comfort in the promise but in keeping of the precept; therefore he pitches the emphasis, "I have loved thy word," that is true, and all thy word, and this part, the mandatory part: "I have loved thy commandments."
Observe the number, "thy commandments"; it is plural, that is, all thy commandments without exception; otherwise even ungodly men will be content to love some commandments, if they may choose them for themselves.
Richard Holdsworth (1590-1649), in "The Valley of Vision."

From the additional notes to Charles Spurgeon's, The Treasury of David, on Psalm 119 - I will lift up my hands to your commandments, which I love.
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