2 Reasons for Worship (Psalm 19)

Psalms Study Guide (Week 2)

SUGGESTED VERSES FOR MEMORIZATION & MEDITATION

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. (Psalm 19:1)

The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. (Psalm 19:7)

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)

OPENING THOUGHT

Last week, we initiated our study of worship with Psalm 1. We saw there that worship is a lifestyle and that true worship must come, not only from what we do but also from who we are. We read about two ways of life: the righteous and the wicked (meaning, those who follow God and those who do not). The righteous are known for their delight in the law of the LORD and for being like deeply rooted trees. The wicked, on the other hand, are like chaff that is blown away with the wind and destined for destruction.

We now turn to a psalm of David, which could be described as celebrating God’s communication with us. At its essence, the psalm looks at two reasons for why we ought to worship God, followed by a prayer to God. The first part discusses the heavens above and how they reveal to us the glory of God. The second section celebrates the law of the LORD and all of its benefits. Finally, the poem concludes with David’s prayer to the LORD.

Both the world (God’s creation) and the law (God’s Word) reveal to us the character of the LORD. By these two forms of revelation, we are therefore able to know God more fully, which makes them prime reasons for worshiping God. Of course, the more we understand of God’s nature, the more we begin to understand of our nature. This is why David’s concluding prayer is so focused upon his sin. After pondering the holiness and glorious might of God, David pleads with the LORD to keep him from committing sins that God despises. Fortunately, in Christ, we are blameless before God, and we can continue to let the words of our mouth and the meditations of our heart be acceptable to Him.

Read verses 1-6 and discuss the following.

  1. By saying that the heavens declare the glory of God, David is speaking about what is called God’s natural revelation (what nature reveals to us about God). What attributes of God can we observe from creation? Is natural revelation sufficient for understanding the basics of the gospel?
  2. David claims that the voice of the heavens, which proclaim God’s glory, go throughout the earth so that everyone hears. Similarly, Paul writes in Romans 1:18-20 that God’s attributes have been clearly known to everyone because of God’s creation. Given these two passages, is anyone able to truly be an atheist?

Read verses 7-11 and discuss the following.

  1. In this section, David turns from the natural revelation of God to the special revelation found in the Scriptures, which he takes great delight in. What are some reasons for why David calls the law of the LORD more desirable than gold and sweeter than honey?

Read verses 12-14 and discuss the following.

  1. This section seems to be slightly out of place with the previous verses. How might David’s prayer for the LORD to keep him from sin relate to the first eleven verses of the psalm?

ACTIONS TO CONSIDER

  • Having discussed how nature and the Bible both reveal God to us, take a few moments to observe the beauty of God’s creation and meditate on the Word. Prayerfully rejoice in God, who gave us both of them.
  • Consider David’s final prayer, for the words of his mouth and the meditation of his heart to be acceptable to God. Make this your prayer as well, asking God for grace to live and speak in ways that are pleasing to Him.
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