How many of us have memorized this verse?
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14
Many of us. In fact, I know many pastors who use this as part of their prayer before beginning a sermon.
Having memorized this verse, it lept out at me as I was doing part of my ‘Who is…’ series. There is a clear declaration of Yahweh as the Redeemer, but what grabbed my attention even more was the reference. This comes from Psalm 19!!!
Oh. You don’t know why that is so important? Well, then! Let’s have a look!
If we want the words of our mouth and the meditation of our heart to be acceptable to ‘Yahweh, my rock and my Redeemer,’ then we need to understand what ‘words’ and ‘meditation’ HE thinks are acceptable!!
David, ‘a man after God’s own heart,’ penned this Psalm and, like the author of Psalm 119, he was thinking about a particular passage of Scripture!! He was thinking about Deuteronomy 6!!
Christendom uses Deuteronomy 6:4-9, known among Jews as the Shema, to discuss the importance of ‘writing them on your hearts,’ and ‘teaching them diligently to their children,’ but somewhere in the passage they lose sight of the fact that it, in context, is not about New Testament verses or passages. It is specifically about the covenant commandments given by Moses!! Here are the first nine verses in context. I challenge you to read them slowly and not let your eyes glaze over!!
6 “Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the judgments which the Lord your God has commanded me to teach you, that you might do them in the land where you are going over to possess it, 2 so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. 3 O Israel, you should listen and [a]be careful to do it, that it may be well with you and that you may multiply greatly, just as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey.
4 “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 These words (the TORAH!!), which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them (the Torah!!) diligently to your sons and shall talk of them (the Torah!!) when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. 8 You shall bind them (the Torah!!) as a sign on your hand and they shall be as [b]frontals [c]on your forehead. 9 You shall write them (the Torah) on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
When David penned Psalm 19, particularly the last half (beginning at verse 7), he was thinking of the magnificence of the Torah. THOSE are the ‘words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart’ that he KNEW would find acceptance in the sight of Yahweh, his rock and Redeemer!
The next time you hear someone quote ‘Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart …,’ ask them if they are referring to the Torah?
More on Psalm 19b.