This is surely one of David’s most sublime psalms, dominated throughout by the note of praise. Fresh causes of thanksgiving keep occurring to the psalmist as he writes. These can be identified as seven statements describing different attributes of the Lord, namely,
“Great is the Lord”, v. 3; “The Lord is gracious”, v. 8; “The Lord is good”, v. 9; “The Lord upholdeth”, v. 14; “The Lord is righteous”, v. 17; “The Lord is nigh”, v. 18; “The Lord preserveth”, v. 20.
Some of these statements were based on David’s observation and some on his experience. They prove both that he knew a great deal about the Lord from the law, and that he had learned very much also from the Lord Himself. This should be true for all of us. “Learn of me”, Matt. 11. 29 A.V., R.V., is rendered “learn from me” by J.N.D. This amendment is important. It is obviously possible to learn of a man without learning from him. The first phrase suggests the acquisition of knowledge without any acquaintance with the person concerned. But we can only learn from someone by being in his company. That the Lord was thinking of such personal learning is proved by the surrounding context, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me … my yoke is easy, and my burden is light”. As we are yoked to Christ, walking in fellowship with Him, we may learn from Him. Correspondence course students often encounter problems because they cannot consult their tutor directly; when he is remote from his students, they will struggle. It is often said that the ideal teaching situation is “one-to-one”; this is what the Lord Jesus offers when He says, “learn from me”.
It is good to learn about Him in the Scriptures. We should all be enthusiastic Bible students. Prayerful Scripture-reading is always profitable, and is vital to spiritual growth. But what we learn in God’s Book we must prove in our lives. Head knowledge alone may produce legalism and pride. Heart knowledge gleaned in communion with the Lord will enrich us spiritually and result in increasing likeness to Christ.
“But ye have not so learned Christ; if so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus”, Eph. 4. 20, 21.
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