Psalm 119:38 – “Establish Your word to Your servant, As that which produces reverence for You.” (NASB)
Have you ever had someone promise something to you and then not deliver on that promise? I know that I have. In fact, I know that I’ve too often been guilty of making a promise that I failed to deliver on.
God will never do that.
Psalm 119:38 says, “Fulfill your promise to your servant, so that you may be feared,” in the New International Version of the Bible. The New American Standard Bible translates it more liteally when it says, “Establish Your word to Your servant, As that which produces reverence for You.”
At first glance this verse may look like David is making a deal with God. If God fulfills His end of the bargain then David will fear God. But, that’s not a completely accurate way to look at this verse. David wasn’t bargaining with God. God had already made a covenant with him. That covenant is recorded in 2 Samuel 7:16, which says, “Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever.” (NASB)
When God made this covenant with David, the King responded with the following prayer,
“18Then David the king went in and sat before the LORD, and he said, “Who am I, O Lord GOD, and what is my house, that You have brought me this far? 19″And yet this was insignificant in Your eyes, O Lord GOD, for You have spoken also of the house of Your servant concerning the distant future And this is the custom of man, O Lord GOD.
20″Again what more can David say to You? For You know Your servant, O Lord GOD!
21″For the sake of Your word, and according to Your own heart, You have done all this greatness to let Your servant know.
22″For this reason You are great, O Lord GOD; for there is none like You, and there is no God besides You, according to all that we have heard with our ears.
23″And what one nation on the earth is like Your people Israel, whom God went to redeem for Himself as a people and to make a name for Himself, and to do a great thing for You and awesome things for Your land, before Your people whom You have redeemed for Yourself from Egypt, from nations and their gods?
24″For You have established for Yourself Your people Israel as Your own people forever, and You, O LORD, have become their God.
25″Now therefore, O LORD God, the word that You have spoken concerning Your servant and his house, confirm it forever, and do as You have spoken,
26that Your name may be magnified forever, by saying, ‘The LORD of hosts is God over Israel’; and may the house of Your servant David be established before You.
27″For You, O LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, have made a revelation to Your servant, saying, ‘I will build you a house’; therefore Your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to You.
28″Now, O Lord GOD, You are God, and Your words are truth, and You have promised this good thing to Your servant.
29″Now therefore, may it please You to bless the house of Your servant, that it may continue forever before You. For You, O Lord GOD, have spoken; and with Your blessing may the house of Your servant be blessed forever.”
Did you notice the similarity of verses 24-26 with Psalm 119:38? In the Psalm, David was merely asking God to do what God had promised to do. He saw God’s fulfillment of His promise as a reason to worship God.
So, what has God promised us?
He’s promised to forgive us when we truly repent.
He’s promised to never stop loving us.
He’s promised salvation to all those who make Him Lord of their life.
He’s promised to return.
He’s promised to never leave us or forsake us.
He’s promised to listen to us.
He’s promised to watch over us.
He’s promised to accomplish His purposes in our lives.
He’s promised to . . . well you get the idea.
I’m just hitting the tip of the iceberg.
We may not have a throne that will never end . . . but then again . . . we, who are joint heirs with Jesus do have thrones . . . and we will rule with Christ for eternity . . . and He will be our God . . . and we will be His people . . . and God will keep His promise.
We will never be You. We will never be God. And, we thank You for that. But, You have made promises to Your children that are spectacular. Those who have been redeemed by You will live and reign with You forever. Sometimes it’s easy when we are living our day-to-day lives to feel like your promises have been forgotten. Help us not to live with a temporal perspective, but with Your eternal perspective. Help us, to like David, look at your answered promises as a reason to worship you. For, you, God are worthy of our praise.
In Jesus’ name,