May those who fear you rejoice when they see me, for I have put my hope in your word.
All the verses in this section of Psalm 119 begin with yodh, the smallest letter in the Hebrew alphabet; it’s about the size of an apostrophe. When Jesus mentions “the smallest letter” in his discussion of God’s law (Matthew 5:17-18), he is referring to yodh. But this small letter introduces big ideas.
As in many other Bible passages, the writer of these verses in Scripture praises God for creating him. But he is not thinking only of how he has been made physically; he is specifically praising God for molding and shaping his soul through the teaching of God’s Word.
God wants to form his children spiritually, and that flows from his unfailing love and compassion. Because he loves us, God wants to see us grow in faith and love. Inspired by God’s love, the psalmist leans deeper and deeper into God’s Word.
The psalmist has mentioned his own spiritual growth repeatedly, but here he adds an important dimension. It’s not enough to simply let God’s Word shape him; the psalmist confesses that it is also his responsibility to reveal God’s Word to others. He commits to doing this by being a living testimony to the beauty and goodness of God’s Word and by sharing the importance of cherishing and following God’s Word.
Unlike the letter yodh, striving with all our heart to follow God by testifying to the power of his Word is no small thing.
May we wholeheartedly follow your Word, Lord, and teach others to do the same. Amen.
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