01/04/2018 -- Faithful Potter -- Psalm 119:75
I know, O Lord, that your rules are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. (ESV)
The prohibitions and mandates of God are pure. They coincide with his holy standards. God gives us his rules in faithfulness to himself and his holiness. They are the standard he requires. How kind that he reveals them to us. We walk in darkness and ignorance and with an inclination to every kind of evil. It is incredible mercy that he makes known his rules. And of this I am certain: that his rules are right.
It does not seem difficult to affirm that God’s rules are right. What does seem difficult to affirm is that God’s afflictions in my life are just as right as his rules. And yet the psalmist adds this statement of startling confidence. “I know that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.” Read it again. “I know that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.” This affirmation is profound!
Many if not most human beings under the weight of affliction cry within and without, “God, why have you allowed this affliction? Have you forgotten me?” But here in the midst of affliction the psalm writer says to the Lord, “I know why I am here. It is because you are faithful.” Back in Psalm 119:65 he said to the Lord, “You have dealt well with your servant, according to your word.” Here is a realization we need to constantly carry with us. God keeps his word. His rules are right. They are a reflection of God. And the God who gives only good rules will work in faithfulness to who he is, what he requires, and the word he has breathed out. So when he afflicts me, I can be sure he is faithfully pursuing what is right for me. And what is right is what is best.
A parent who loves God will teach their child what is right, and in faithfulness they will discipline their child. That discipline is a precious gift the child dare not spurn. In the same way we dare not spurn the discipline of the Lord. The scriptures warn us not to “despise the Lord’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights” (Proverbs 3:11-12; Hebrews 12:5-6).
The God who gives righteous rules administers affliction to our hearts to help insure the beauty of obedience in our lives. It is a joy-inducing beauty. He is a faithful potter. Embrace the affliction that will produce a glorious result for the glory of God and for your joy. In affliction do not question his care; rather, affirm his great faithfulness.