Psalm 25:4-5 - Make me to know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You I wait all the day long.
This psalm of David employs a device used elsewhere in the psalms: an acrostic. In this case, it's an alphabetic acrostic which uses successive letters in the Hebrew alphabet to begin each verse. Six other psalms do something similar. Acrostics sometimes spell out a significant word or phrase with their first letters, or they might form a particular pattern of some sort. In the case of this psalm, one reason for the acrostic may have been to create a memory tool for remembering the psalm's 22 verses.
Remembering things is always helpful. Our lives are jammed with times and dates to be somewhere, do something, or see someone. On the job, we're bombarded with task deadlines, meetings, presentations, spreadsheets, emails, phone messages, and the like. All demand our attention in one form or another. If you toss raising kids into the mix, the demands, not surprisingly, are pretty much endless. The fact is sometimes it's hard to remember all that we have to do.
It appears God in His divine providence is giving the people Israel a memory tool in Psalm 25 -- something to help them recall His Word throughout their day. "Make me," "teach me," "lead me," David says, as he leans on the God of his salvation for instruction, forgiveness, deliverance, and redemption, which are all mentioned in this psalm. These are the imperatives David wanted operational in his life. He was ready for personal transformation by the hand of God. He was ready to learn the paths of righteousness, for His Name's sake. As the anointed shepherd of God's people, these were verses he didn't want himself -- or the community he governed -- to forget.
David knew that becoming more like the King he worshipped meant a lifelong apprenticeship of learning His ways. Maybe it was humility and a shepherd's heart -- a deep-down reliance on God from his youth -- maybe that's what separated David from his brothers when Samuel poured oil on him as king. While David's auspicious beginnings held great promise, he was a man of foibles and capable of grievous and devious things.
In short, we are like David. We need to remember daily the life we are to lead; we are to seek earnestly the person God would have us be. We are unlike David, though, in one thing. While the prophet Nathan foretold of a Davidic descendant who would establish a kingdom forever (see 2 Samuel 7), we -- as the apostle John has said in his first letter -- we have beheld Him who was from the beginning (see 1 John 1:1). Our imperative is to remember the teachings and example of God's Holy One -- Jesus: the branch of Jesse, the Promised Messiah, the Lord and Savior of the World.
Truly, David could have written these words to Jesus Himself: "Make me to know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You I wait all the day long."
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, grant us the remembrance of Your Word in all we do. Let its truth mark our lives as Your people, and may we be empowered to share Your Words with others. In Jesus' Name we pray. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Paul Schreiber.
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