“Praise the LORD! Blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who greatly delights in his commandments! … the generation of the upright will be blessed…. his righteousness endures forever. Light dawns in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious, merciful, and righteous…For the righteous will never be moved… his righteousness endures forever.” (Psalm 112)
The writer of the Psalms has taught us that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom at the end of Psalm 111, and now gives us a description of personal wisdom in Psalm 112. The one who fears the Lord savors God’s commandments (v. 1). We embrace what we enjoy, so obedience to God’s commands is implied. The psalmist goes on to say that the godly person is gracious, merciful, and righteous. These are all communicable attributes of God, shared by believers in Christ, who has imputed his righteousness to us. Righteousness is mentioned five times in this short psalm. It is linked to blessing (v. 2), eternality (v. 3, 6, 9), light (v. 4), and stability (v. 6). The more we embrace God’s commands and his Word, the more like Christ we become. As we grow to be more God-like, as we are sanctified, our worship for God becomes more holy and reverent leading to more fear of the Lord.
In his commentary on Psalm 111, James Boice wrote, “No people ever rise higher than their idea of God…We deplore the breakdown of moral standards, but what do we expect when we have focused our worship services on ourselves and our own often trivial needs rather than on God? Our view of God affects what we are and do.” * In his book, “Everyone’s a Theologian,” Dr. R. C. Sproul teaches that religion is the worship practices of man whereas theology is the study of God. Wise believers marry the two, our worship is our theology.
Our worship this Lord’s Day will either be high and exalted, focused with reverence on God or self-centered. We will either humbly appreciate and thank Christ for his sacrifice, giving us his righteousness or we will allow ourselves to slip into an unconscious reverie of Super bowl plans. We know what is right to glorify God. Will you pray for his help with your worship today? “Because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption.” (Corinthians 1:30)
* Boice, James M., Boice Expositional Commentary Series, “Psalm 111,” Baker Books, 1998.