Earlier this week, Lindsey shared how God’s law refreshes us, gives us wisdom, gives joy, and shines the path.
Whenever I consider the God-creation relationship, I usually think of a parent-child relationship. Though an earthly parent-child relationship obviously cannot fully represent the God-creation one, it’s a close relative I can wrap my brain around to attempt to understand and grow from.
Why do we give our children rules? To protect. To guide. To scaffold learning. Because we love.
Though we definitely fail and are never perfect examples, typically our rules are not because we want to harm our children or degrade our children. They come from pure hearts, even though broken ones.
But God’s rules? Totally pure. And perfect.
So when Psalm 19:9 says:
“The fear of the Lord is pure,
The decrees of the Lord are firm,
and all of them are righteous.
We know that God’s heart is pure, His decrees strong and righteous.
And pure “fear” (reverence) of Him? Enduring and life-giving.
We want our own children to obey our rules to stay safe and learn, but also learn to freely choose wisely. God gives us that same choice. He allows us to choose, and reverence of Him helps us choose wisely.
Psalm 19:10 continues to explain the beauty of God’s rules and decrees:
They are more precious than gold,
than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
than honey from the honeycomb.
Like parents, God knows His rules are sweet and valuable to a child’s growth and safety.
And like children, we fail to see that sometimes.
But, thankfully, God gives us the availability of a constant reminder through His word, like Psalm 19:11:
By them your servant is warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.”
David wrote Psalm 19 in hindsight. He likely experienced how reverently following God’s decrees brought good and regularly received warnings (reminders) of keeping His decrees.
But, that “sweeter than honey” part? Imagine that.
Harmful, degrading, restricting rules taste bitter.
But God’s life-giving, coming-from-love rules are sweet, sweeter… the sweetest.
As Lindsey also mentioned:
“Rules without love leads to legalism, but rules with love lead to life.”
God is love (1 John 4:16), and He gives reminders of sweet life through His decrees and His word.
How do rules and grace work together in your life? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Bible Study for this Week:
- Find three “decrees” in other places of the Bible and write those down.
- Reflect on how you can follow these decrees reverently and with love. What could that look like for you and your family today?
- How do you avoid legalism in your life? I struggle with this as I personally lean towards legalism at times, particularly against myself, and have to remind myself constantly of grace. (Which is probably why grace is so beautiful and heart-changing to me.) Share your ideas on keeping our minds on grace in the comments.
- Write (or sing or dance or draw) out praise to God for His sweeter-than-honey decrees today.