PSALM 119:25-32  


 PSALM 119

THE PATHWAY FILE: Verses 25-32

The letter, daleth, represents a door. It speaks of choosing the right pathway in life. The word, derek (way) occurs 5 times in this file. The issue is to have a proper standard to determine proper attitudes and behavior in life.

Verse 25 - The Physical Life Entry: The believer depends on the principles and promises found in God’s word in order to trust in God’s preservation of His physical life in the face of persecution.

1. My soul: nephesh refers to the inner man where the real issues in life are determined.
2. cleaves to the dust: dAbhaq is the verb. This is an idiom for extreme pressure.

    A. The pressure of darkness viewpoint in general.
    B. The pressure of persecution.
    C. This idiom recognizes the reality of the pressure, but does not necessarily indicate depression.

3. Revive me: piel imperative of chAyAh has the idea keeping alive, to let live, to restore to life.
This is the first occurrence of the piel form of this verb. It was seen as a qal imperfect at verse 17. In this context, it’s the preservation of physical life in an antagonistic environment where persecutors are seeking to kill him.  In humility dependence on God, the believer relies upon God to maintain his physical life according to His character and His plan; that is, according to the promises and principles revealed in His word.

4. According to your word: dAbhAr – It is God’s word that contains the principles and promises concerning God’s plan for the believer. The believer can trust in God and His word, that his physical life will be maintained according to God’s perfect wisdom and timing.

5. This believer uses this verb 9 times as a piel imperative. Depending on the context, the focus is either on -

(1) keeping the believer alive in the face of persecution (verses 25, 88, 107, 149, 154, 156, 159).
See also Psalm 138:7; 143:11
(2) or on preserving abundant life blessings here on earth (verses 37, 40).
See also Psalm 69:32; Isaiah 57:15

In either case it expresses his consistent attitude of humility dependence on the plan and the character of God for both spheres of blessing in his life.

a. Verse 25: Keep me alive according to your word (dAbhAr)
Verse 50: Your word (
imrAh) has maintained my quality of life (chAyAh as a piel perfect).
Verse 93: By your precepts (piqqudh) you have kept me alive (chAyAh as a piel perfect).

b. Verse 37: Maintain my quality of life in the sphere of your ways
c. Verse 40: Maintain my quality of life through your righteousness
d. Verse 88: Keep me alive according to your grace-provision (chesed)
e. Verse 107: Keep me alive according to your word (dAbhAr)
f. Verse 149: Keep me alive according to your ordinances (just standards, mispAt).
g. Verse 154: Keep me alive according to your word (
h. Verse 156: Keep me alive according to your just standards (mishpAt).
i. Verse 159: Keep me alive according to your grace-provision (chesed).

6. Two times he uses the piel perfect to express the past and present reality of God’s preservation of both physical and abundant life blessings (“You have revived me,” verses 50 and 93).

The translators want to limit the use of the piel stem to just abundant life blessings, for the rendering, “revive and revived” indicates that, and does not allow for a reference to physical life.

However, the passages above listed in point 5.(1), clearly refer to the preservation of physical life in the face of violent persecution. Accordingly, I cannot accept the rendering, “revive” at all of its occurrences.  But it is also clear that there are times when the focus is on the preservation of quality of life reality; the abundant life.

7. Five times in the qal imperfect, the focus is on PHYSICAL life (verses 17, 77, 116, 144, 175).

Verse 26 – The Study Entry

1. I have told: sAphar as a piel perfect means to count out in a detailed manner.  I have declared

    A. Lay it all on the table in order to compare it with God’s standards.
    B. This is appealing to God for evaluation and guidance.

2. My ways: Derek refers to the attitudes and actions which express the person’s outlook on life.

    A. We must recognize the existence of human viewpoint. Pr. 14:12; 16:2
    B. Only those ways which reflect the character and plan of God are acceptable to Him. Is. 55.6
    C. This counting out expresses the desire of Psalm119:5
    D. And the attitude reflected at Ps. 139.24

3. You have answered me: this indicates that the counting out is actually an appeal to God for  him to evaluate.

4. And then, once the evaluation is made, humility accepts it, and expresses teachability.

    A. Teach me: lAmadh as a piel imperative. (qal stem means to learn)
    The attitude of humility (teachability) accepts God’s standards (God’s way) as a replacement to his
    own way. CF. Ps. 119:1, 3

    B. Your statutes: choq - decrees for moral and spiritual living.
    C. Such instruction from God enables the believer to fulfill Proverbs 3.5-6.

Verse 27 - The meditation entry

1. Make me understand: biyn - hiphil imperative. The hiphil stem is CAUSATIVE. That means then that the verb biyn (to understand) has the idea of CAUSE me to understand. It is simply repetition of the teaching and perception issues.

2. the way: derek-way of life. GOD’S way of life. Thus the value system and modus operendi for the Christian way of life.

3. Of your precepts: piqqudh-that which God has appointed or assigned as the standards for his entire creation.

4. Notice the CONTRAST between “my ways” and God’s way.


    A. The principle: 1 Sam. 16.7 with Is. 55.8-9 (Thus John 7.24)
    B. Statement of value: Ps. 19.7- 11; Proverbs 3:13-18
    C. Orientation to detai1s of life: Luke 12.15-23
    D. Derek as a summary of the Divine value system. INSERT

5. So (actually, and) I will meditate: The verb is siyach. This is the natural result of fully understanding the Divine value system. It Fulfills Josh. 1.8-9 and Psalm 1.2.

6. On your wonders: pAlA as a Niphal participle makes it a noun.  The miraculous things God does in order to provide Divine benefit for his creation.

Verse 28 - The Stability entry

 1. My soul weeps: nephesh + dAlaph as a qal perfect. It means to drop or drip. It is used for a house that leaks. A soul that weeps is a soul in depression.

2. Because of grief: The noun, tugAh is an unpleasant situation in life which causes some degree of suffering.

     A. grief situations in life cannot be avoided.

          1. The consequences of the fall:

               a. Gen. 3. 16 - The woman

               b. Gen. 3. 17-18 - The man

               c. Rom. 8.20-23 - The physical creation

          2. Persecution:  Philippians 1:29; 1 Peter 1:6

          3. tugAh:  Proverbs 10:1; 17:21; 14:13

          4. Personal acts of sin can also be viewed as a grief situation.

     B. The real issue is how you handle these situations. Romans 8:18; Philip. 4:6-7; 1 Peter 5:7
     Knowledge and application of God’s word (Bible truth). Psalm 116:1-4

     C. This believer recognizes the reality of grief situations in lie and the potential for depression in his own
       life as a result.

      D. But he also recognizes the basis for stability; God’s word in the soul.

3.  Strengthen me: stabilize. The verb is qum as a piel imperative.

     A. in the qal it means to rise up or to stand.  Ps. 119.62
     B. in the hiphil stem it means to lift up or to establ1sh. Ps. 119:38
     C. in the pie1 stem it means to confirm or stabilize. Ps. 119:106

4. According to your word: dAbhAr. Only bible truth-learned and applied win give the soul what it needs for stability in any grief situation.


Verse 29 – The Correction Entry

 1.  Remove: sur as a hiphil imperative. Cause to depart – thus, remove or take away.

     A. Indicates total dependence on God’s provision to expose darkness viewpoint and guide in 
     the way of truth.

     B. There is natural progression from the previous verses.

     Verse 26 - evaluation through study
     Verse 27 - perception and meditation
     Verse 28 - stabilizing through the word
     Verse 29 - corrected way of life
     Verse 30 - Dedication attitude

     C. The way of deception: derek + sheqer = falsehood and/or deception darkness viewpoint which
      promotes an inferior, unfulfilling quality of life.  The philosophy of darkness. Psalm 139:24

2. And grace your law to me:

     A. chAnan as a qal imperative. This verb means to express favor or to be gracious; to grace someone
      with something.

     B. To grace someone is to provide what they need based on the standards in your own soul.

     C. God's grace is the expression of his love and wisdom (compassion) without reference to human merit
      or works

            1. Common grace: Mt- 5.45
            2. Salvation grace: Titus 2- 11
            3. Christian way of life (CWL) grace: Heb. 4.16 - to help in time of need


      E. Further growth is in view here with the word torah; instruction
     Divine viewpoint is the only thing that can offset the deception of darkness philosophy.

Verse 30 - The dedication entry

1. I have chosen: bAchar as a qal perfect. This is the word of personal freedom and volition.

2. the way of faithfulness: - derek emunAh - communicates dedication to the divine value system.

3. I have placed before me: shAwAh - piel perfect. – Something is put in the place of priority and value.
     CF. Ps. 16.8

4. Your mishpAt - standards of justice

     A. The real evidence of dedication to God is an occupation with his word.
     John 15:23, “if anyone loves me he will keep my word.”

     B. The believer who emotes and claims faithfulness but is not in an active pursuit of learning God's word
     is in self deception - the way of sheqer.

Verse 31 - The confidence entry

1. I cleave: dAbhaq as a qa1 perfect means to cling to or embrace.

2. your testimonies 0 Yahweh: duth, again, refers to principles of truth which bring attention to the reputation of God; either his character or his works.

3. do not put me to shame: bosh - hiphil imperfect  + negative.
The verb in the hiphil means to cause or permit shame

     A. You shall not let me be ashamed.

     B. This is based on the dynamics of truth in the soul. When those dynamics are in control, then nothing
      intimidates, embarrasses or causes fear. See John 16:1

Verse 32 - The obedience entry: the result of the previous entries

1.  I shall run: ruts as a qal imperfect.

2. the way of your commandments: derek mitswAh. This is the way of life that is dictated by God’s commandments; His commanded policies for worship and morality.

3. For: kiy – because. This explains the basis for obedience.

4. you will enlarge: rAchabh as a hiphil imperfect.

5. My heart: interesting image occurring only 4 times.

     A. Isaiah 60:5 - enlarged from the joy of prosperity.
     B. Proverbs 21.4; 28.25, occurs as an adjective for proud.
     C. Here - with emphasis on content producing joy and motivation for obedience. The “enlargement” is
     the increased experience of abundant life blessings.


1.  Verse 25, THE PHYSICAL LIFE ENTRY: The believer depends on the principles and promises found in God’s word in order to trust in God’s preservation of His physical life in the face of persecution.

2.  Verse 26, THE STUDY ENTRY: learning involves replacing your old human viewpoint way of life with the perspective from God's decrees.

3.  Verse 27, THE MEDITATION ENTRY: Only through understanding the Divine viewpoint way of life can one truly meditate on the progress of God’s plan.

4.  Verse 28, THE STABILITY ENTRY: God's word is the only stabilizing factor for dealing with grief situations in life.

5.  Verse 29, THE CORRECTION ENTRY: Only through God's graciously provided truth can the believer cleanse and protect himself from the way of deception.

6.  Verse 30, THE DEDICATION ENTRY: dedication to the Divine viewpoint way of life is measured by faithfulness in learning and fol1owing God's truth.

7.  Verse 31, THE CONFIDENCE ENTRY: Occupation with the character and plan of God is, the basis for personal stability and confidence in life.

8.  Verse 32, THE OBEDIENCE ENTRY: Consistent obedience to the Divine viewpoint way of  life is based on knowledge content in the heart.


Questions and comments are always welcome

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