Wise Words From A 16th Century Puritan Pastor

Psalm 119:39 – “Take away the disgrace I dread, for your laws are good.”

I love the way that C. H. Spurgeon wrote. The man, who history has called, The Prince of Preachers was an incredible orator, but also quite proficient with the pen. In his classic work, The Treasury of David, Spurgeon analyzed every verse of the Psalms, phrase by phrase.

As I read today’s verse, I turned to Spurgeon for help. When David asked God to take away the disgrace taht he dreaded, Spurgeon was convinced that the disgrace had to do with David’s enemies. The King James Version of the Bible translated this verse, “Turn away my reproach which I fear: for thy judgments are good.” David was pleading with God for divine intervention in dealing with his enemies. He wanted God to not allow his enemies to make a mockery of him. I would agree with David. I don’t like it when a mockery is made of me. But, I’m not a King. When David battled enemies, his entire country was effected.

When talking about the end of this verse Spurgeon quoted Richard Greenham. Greenham was one of the most prominent Puritan pastors of the 16th century. I’d love to have one of Greenham’s original books some day. Spurgeon, quoting Greenham wrote the following of the words, for thy judgments are good, which are found at the end of Psalm 119:39.

“The judgements of the wicked are bad judgments, but the judments of God are good; (At this point in the reading I was thinking, ‘Wow! This Richard Greenham was a real rocket scientist.’) I pray against those, I appeal to these: I fear one, I approve the other. Now the judgments which God pronounceth in His word, be they threatenings in the law, or consolations in the Gospel, yea, and those also which He executeth in the world, whether upon the godly or godless, they must needs be good. 1. Because God is goodness itself. 2. He cannot be deceived. 3. He will not be bribed. 4. He alone is no respecter of person, but judgeth according to every man’s work.”

So, today, let’s focus in on a God whose judgments are good. His desires for us are good. Let’s try to remember that God does make demands of us. That God’s demands are for His glory and our betterment. Let’s pursue God with everything we have. And, let’s rejoice that His judgments are good.

Dear God,

There is not one of us who deserves Your love. Your judments are indeed good. They are not fair, or we would all be condemned to hell. Thank You that You deal with men in grace and love. May You be lifted higher in our lives.

In Jesus’ name,


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