God’s Law Sustains
Key Verse: “The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.”
THE WORDS OF OUR KEY Verse, ‘law,’ ‘testimony,’ ‘statutes,’ and ‘commandment,’ all have to do with God’s righteous ways, which he desires that we follow to the best of our ability. In this text, the psalmist describes God’s law in four ways, and then tells what the resulting effect should be on the life of the child of God.
First, the psalmist says that God’s law is ‘perfect, converting the soul.’ The word perfect has the thought of being truthful and complete. That is a fitting description of God’s law. It is truthful; therefore, it is always reliable. In God’s law, righteousness is always righteousness, and sin is always sin. God’s law is also complete—he has not left out any provision. If we follow his law, we will have a guideline to every issue of life. This perfect law converts the soul. That is, because it is perfect, truthful, and complete, it can convert the soul that has fallen into sin, and bring those who are willing and obedient back into covenant relationship with God. This is true of the church, the prospective bride of Christ, now, and it will also be true of mankind in Christ’s coming kingdom, as they also are converted to righteousness.
The second statement concerning God’s law in our Key Verse is that it is ‘sure, making wise the simple.’ If one is absolutely sure of something, then to them it is a simple matter, and they have gained the wisdom associated with that surety. We have the assurance in another scripture that God’s word “shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” (Isa. 55:11) Since we can take God at his word, then we—simple human beings—can gain the wisdom needed to follow his law by looking no further than the Scriptures themselves, having complete faith in them, and then applying their principles to our daily lives.
The third element of God’s law in our lesson concerns righteousness. The psalmist says God’s law is ‘right, rejoicing the heart.’ The word right means straight, equitable, upright. In other words, God’s law is always just, never unjust. This truth rejoices the heart of those striving to serve God, because in the fallen world in which we live, there is much injustice, inequity, and crookedness. The true child of God must avoid these tendencies and not join with the world in pursuing and promoting them, but rather rejoice in God’s righteous law. Such look forward to the time when the world will also experience the righteousness of God’s law. “He hath appointed a day, in the which he [God, through the Christ head and body] will judge the world in righteousness.”—Acts 17:31
The final aspect of God’s law contained in our Key Verses states that it is ‘pure, enlightening the eyes.’ One of the synonyms given for the word pure is empty. The thought is that which is pure is empty of all contaminants. This is particularly true with eyesight. Only those who have the contaminants of sin, superstition, pride, and evil cleaned from their spiritual vision will be enabled to be truly enlightened and see and appreciate the law of God in all its glory and beauty.