Psalm 119:48, “My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.”
The psalmist here declares his determined purpose to meditate upon the statutes of the Lord. His declaration, I will meditate, is not a simple prediction of an action that will of necessity occur at some point in the future, as one might say, “I will read a grocery list,” but a determined purpose of heart: I will meditate. Yet this was not just a determined purpose, done simply as an action of a disciplined will—although such a determination and discipline appears in his declaration—but an expression of his love, of his passionate desire for Jehovah’s statutes. They are thy commandments, which I have loved. He is determined to meditate upon them in the future, for they are the joy and rejoicing of his heart. He would have no contentment without this meditation. The lack of it would be to him a tragedy, a failure to fulfill a heart famished for Divine milk and meat. Nor is his love the fleeting sprout of a minute, but a living, growing thing which extends back in years to the time He first knew the Lord in truth, and which continued to develop to the time of his present prayer—he can say I have loved—and also something which will yet further flourish, a hunger and thirst for His Savior’s statutes which will grow the more it is fed—for he yet will meditate and will lift up his hands to his God’s commands. These statutes are precious to him because of their author—“They are thy statutes, oh my God, therefore I do love them.” Nor is his love selective, so that he would have certain of these statutes, and not the others—all the commandments and statutes are his meditation, love, and delight. To all of them he will lift up his hands—he yearns for them, desire them, values and blesses them; he stretches forth his hands to them all, out of love for them (cf. Ps 63:4; Lam 3:41; the only other OT vv. where lift and hands are conjoined). He expresses this love, not to his neighbor only, or to the people of God in general—although he would also gladly sing this section of the hymnbook of Israel with them—but to the all-seeing God, He who searches and tries the reins and the heart. No half-heartedness, no secret reservations, are possible, for all things are exposed to the One with whom he has to do. He freely confesses his feelings toward the Word to its Author, as to one who already knows and can verify the truthfulness of his declaration of love, and the determinate purpose of his future resolves with respect to it: My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; and I will meditate in thy statutes.
Oh my soul, how is it with you? Is it your determination to say, I will meditate? Have Jehovah’s statutes been your burning passion since the time of your conversion to this time? It must be so, to some degree, if ever you have tasted that the Lord is gracious. Is your respect to all his statutes, or are there certain which you would only halfway embrace? Search your mind and heart. Can you join the psalmist in his prayer, or sing this portion of the inspired songbook to the Lord? Oh for grace that it might be so, now, and for ever more!