The Delightful Way

The Pleasures of Choosing God
December 16, 2005, 9:55 pm
Filed under: Warrior

Today started out awesome: I dropped my father off at work, went to the Y and worked out, then went to Starbucks for a Venti Chai Eggnog Latte and studied my Bible. Since I’m currently not on a plan, I started with Psalm 16. A very encouraging psalm, but I especially noticed verses 5-6 and also 9 and 11. I did some study on these verses, here is what I found:
"The LORD is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance." (Psalm 16:5-6)

My life, as long as I’ve chosen God, is both secure (He holds my inheritance; my plot of land) and pleasant. The obvious tie in here is to Psalm 37:23-24 (my life verse). But these verses also raise a couple interesting questions: What is the meaning of "my chosen portion"? How about "my cup"? What is the significance of these?
I found the answers in the cross-references: God is my strength ( Psalm 73:26), my inheritance (Psalm 119:57 ; note the commitment to keep His words); my refuge (Psalm 142:5). It is interesting to note from related verses ( Num 18:20, Jeremiah 10:16) that in the OT, the priests did not have an actual land inheritance assigned to them; instead God became their inheritance. Later on in Jewish history, the Lord’s inheritance became to mean the entirety of God’s promises through his Covenant with Israel. In the New Covenant, we (as believers) are priests and so, in the same form, God becomes our inheritance. Just another reminder to hold our possessions here on earth loosely; our citizenship is in heaven.
The only cross reference for cup is Psalm 23:5; the meaning appears to me to be that God, through Jesus, supplies all our needs for nourishment spiritually.
So we choose God, and God holds our inheritance, becoming our refuge, our strength, our inheritance, our nourishment. But that is not all he gives us.
"Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure…You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore." (Psalm 16:9, 11)
Have you ever experienced having your whole being rejoice? Mine has! It is an awe-inspiring experience, indescribable, incomparable…I have found it several times when seeking God whole heartedly. The first real experience of this joy was when I did a day in prayer, something I highly recommend. Lorne C. Sanny has written a great article, I will try to post a link to it sometime soon.
Three phrases stuck out to me in verse 11: "The Path of Life", "Fullness of Joy", and "Pleasures Forevermore." These are such catchy phrases, and so rich in meaning:
"The Path of Life"
Matthew 7:14 indicates that this path is hard, narrow, and few will find it. Contrast this with the rest of verse 11: Despite being full of joy and pleasures, it is hard physically.
John 14:6 (and context) shows us that this path is through Jesus.
"Fullness of Joy"
God is my Satisfaction (Psalm 17:15; the language is very romantic; God is our Lover), my Eternal Blessing ( Psalm 21:6).
"Pleasures Forevermore"
Quite the promise. Psalm 36:8 is a picture of these pleasures; it makes me long all the more for death!
I was also challenged by Proverbs 16:21, 23-24 . But this study is as yet unfinished; it will have to wait!


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