Psalm 119:97 – LOVE AFFAIR
I am not defining a love affair as anything that is seedy or immoral. I am defining a love affair as an ongoing commitment of love, no matter what the circumstances.
People don’t just have love affairs with people.
Some have love affairs, so to speak, with sports, clothes, food, computers, guns and a host of other things.
The Psalmist who wrote Psalm 119 had a love affair.
His love affair was with the Word of God.
Psalm 119:113 – I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.
Psalm 119:163 – I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love.
Psalm 119:165 – Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Psalm 119:47 – And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved.
Psalm 119:48 – My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.
And our text: Psalm 119:97 – O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.
This morning I suggest to you that an ongoing love affair with the Word of God is something every Christian should have. If you profess to know Jesus as your Savior, and to love Him and to love your Heavenly Father, a love for God’s Word should be a characteristic of your life.
I would like us to answer two questions concerning a love affair with the Word of God.
WHY SHOULD I LOVE THE WORD OF GOD?
1. I SHOULD LOVE THE WORD OF GOD BECAUSE OF WHAT IT IS.
What is the Word of God?
It is God’s written revelation to man.
It is exactly what we are calling it, THE WORD OF GOD! 2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:20-21
God used the personality and circumstances of the man writing to give His Word to us, so that Paul sounds different than Peter who sounds different than Isaiah. But each one of them delivered us the Word of God.
If God didn’t care about us He wouldn’t have bothered to give us His Word. The very fact that a righteous, loving, all powerful God would communicate to us, is one good reason to love the Word of God.
2. I SHOULD LOVE THE WORD OF GOD BECAUSE OF WHAT IT DOES.
It is God’s Word that shows us the way of salvation through faith in Christ.
It is God’s law that shows us that we are sinners in need of a Savior. Galatians 3:24
It is God’s Word that is used in bringing people to faith in Christ. The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to bring about the new birth. 1 Peter 1:23
2 Timothy 3:16 – All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
God’s Word teaches us.
God’s Word rebukes us.
God’s Word corrects us.
God’s Word shows us how to live righteously. Psalm 19:7-11.
Notice what the Word of God does according to these verses.
Vs. 7 – It converts, changes, or as the NASB says, it “restores” the soul and it makes simple people wise.
Vs. 8 – God’s Word makes the heart to rejoice and also enlightens the eyes. And I believe it is the Spiritual eyes that are enlightened. We will see Spiritual things more clearly.
Vs. 9 – God’s Word endures forever and God’s Word is true and right.
Vs. 10 – God’s Word is more valuable than gold and sweeter than honey.
Vs. 11 – God’s Word warns us. God rewards those who are obedient to His Word.
3. I SHOULD LOVE THE WORD OF GOD BECAUSE I KNOW THE AUTHOR PERSONALLY
This is not a salvation message per se, but what happens when a person realizes that He is a sinner, that Jesus died for His sins, and that faith alone brings forgiveness and eternal life? What happens when that person is “saved”?
The person is changed.
2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
The person becomes a child of God. Romans 8:15-16, John 1:12-13
Because we are His children, we, of course, should love Him. And if we love Him, we should also love His Word.
I have sincere doubts if a person professes to be a born again Christian and has no interest in hearing the Word of preached and has no interest in reading it for himself, or if he can read, having it read to him.
4. I SHOULD LOVE THE WORD OF GOD BECAUSE OF IT’S IMPORTANCE TO GOD
My Heavenly has made his Word to be extremely important to Himself.
Psalm 138:2 – I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.
Do you see what it says here?
for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.
There is nothing more important to God than His Word.
James Montgomery Boice – “It is as if God is saying, ‘I value my integrity above everything else. Above everything else I want to be believed.’ The verse does not have to mean that God’s other qualities are moved to second place.”
James Montgomery Boice, Psalms Volume 3, (Grand Rapids, Michigan, Baker Book House, 1998), p.1196
Psalm 119:97 – O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.
HOW SHOULD I LOVE THE WORD OF GOD?
Psalm 119:97 says, O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.
Obviously this means that the one who truly loves the Word of God will meditate on it. That is, he or she will reflect on God’s Word continually, trying to understand it and trying to apply it to his or her life.
There will be no greater delight that to learn God’s Word and make it personal.
This learning is academic, but it goes further.
This learning is Spiritual!
It gives Spiritual understanding. Psalm 119:99
Meditating on God’s Word also leads to obedience! Psalm 119:11, Joshua 1:8
How important to is obedience to God?
1 Samuel 15:22-23 – …Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry…
Not only does meditating in God’s Word lead to learning and obedience, but it leads to faith. Romans 10:17
The more I meditate in God’s Word, the stronger my faith will become. And the stronger my faith becomes, the more I will be at peace. Psalm 119:165
So how are we going to go about meditating on Scripture?
Hopefully, you have been doing so this morning, as you have been interacting with the teaching of the Word of God!
Jesus has ordained that His Word be taught. Matthew 28:19-20
Jesus says, “teach”, and learning requires meditation on what is taught. You don’t do much learning if what the teacher says goes “in one ear and out the other”.
Ephesians 4:11-13 – And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
If you really love God’s Word, you need to set aside your excuses and get under the sound of the teaching of the word of God.
Another way we meditate on Scripture is by reading it for ourselves. I personally have changed my reading habits.
I’m reading less and getting it more.
I read a verse and then think about, and apply it to my own life.
Spend time each day with your Bible reading it, and asking God to show you the truth of it. I suggest you start with the Book of Matthew and meander through the New Testament.
Set no preconceived goal but read enough each day to get something out of it.
It is also a good idea to think about what you’ve read later in the day. Turn off the car radio and give thought to the Scriptures.
A great way to start your reading is with the “Bible Reader’s Prayer”.
Psalm 119:18 – Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.
Another way of meditating on God’s Word is through memorization.
We already mentioned Psalm 119:11 – Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Before we can hide God’s Word in our hearts, we need to hide it in our heads.
As we select and memorize specific Scriptures and then meditate on them, that will help us get the Scriptures from our heads to our hearts.
I suggest that you memorize at least a verse a week, and then continue to review the verses.
How valuable is Scripture Meditation? Psalm 1:1-3
Why Scripture Meditation? It is to be part of the love affair that exists between each of us and the Word of God.
Psalm 119:97 – O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.