God’s Promise Gives Hope

Opening Prayer

God, I dedicate myself anew to following Your Word and making You the center of my life.

Read Psalm 119:49–72

49 Remember your word to your servant,
for you have given me hope.
50 My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life.
51 The arrogant mock me unmercifully,
but I do not turn from your law.
52 I remember, Lord, your ancient laws,
and I find comfort in them.
53 Indignation grips me because of the wicked,
who have forsaken your law.
54 Your decrees are the theme of my song
wherever I lodge.
55 In the night, Lord, I remember your name,
that I may keep your law.
56 This has been my practice:
I obey your precepts.

ח Heth
57 You are my portion, Lord;
I have promised to obey your words.
58 I have sought your face with all my heart;
be gracious to me according to your promise.
59 I have considered my ways
and have turned my steps to your statutes.
60 I will hasten and not delay
to obey your commands.
61 Though the wicked bind me with ropes,
I will not forget your law.
62 At midnight I rise to give you thanks
for your righteous laws.
63 I am a friend to all who fear you,
to all who follow your precepts.
64 The earth is filled with your love, Lord;
teach me your decrees.

ט Teth
65 Do good to your servant
according to your word, Lord.
66 Teach me knowledge and good judgment,
for I trust your commands.
67 Before I was afflicted I went astray,
but now I obey your word.
68 You are good, and what you do is good;
teach me your decrees.
69 Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies,
I keep your precepts with all my heart.
70 Their hearts are callous and unfeeling,
but I delight in your law.
71 It was good for me to be afflicted
so that I might learn your decrees.
72 The law from your mouth is more precious to me
than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.

Reflect

Think about those who are facing challenges and difficulties. Hold them in your thoughts as you come to read this psalm of hope.

The psalmist’s attention is captured by the arrogant who do evil and wrap the psalmist in their webs of deceit. They do not keep God’s law themselves, and deride those who do, while seeking also to so cover the psalmist with false accusations, that he is almost unrecognizable. These tactics are familiar to many whose integrity is undermined by lies—even when they are shown to be such. In a world dominated by social media, there is often a lingering taint of
suspicion that attaches itself to the victim of wrongful accusation (after all, they say, “there’s no smoke without fire”).

The psalmist knows this, but more importantly he knows that the final court under whose verdict he must stand is God’s. As sleep evades him at night, and those lies once again assault his peace of mind, his heart turns to praise of God, and fervent prayer (55,58,62), knowing that God has spoken his promise to him (50). In response, he promises wholeheartedly to keep faith with God (57).
Indeed, this humbling experience works only for his good, in the end, for it increases his understanding of God’s ways (71). That is of far greater importance than any amount of worldly wealth.

Apply

Pick out some of God’s promises in his Word. Hold on to these throughout your week as a comfort and hope.

Closing prayer

Lord, when I face trouble, vindicate me, for I put my trust in Your Word.

Terry Schneider