25 My soul clings to the dust;
Revive me according to Your word.
31 I cling to Your testimonies;
O LORD, do not put me to shame!
Psalm 119 has always been a favorite place of mine to dig into for often overlooked gems of beauty and truth. The psalmist’s emphasis on the primacy of God’s Word in every area of his life, beginning with his heart, provides a pretty compact summary of much of the Bible.
On my last reading, I decided to do something different. I looked for verses that paralleled one another and seemed to underscore a particular truth, and I came across v.25 & v.31.
What caught my eye was the word “cling,” which was being used for two very different objects. In v. 25, the psalmist’s soul clings to “the dust”, so he calls upon the Lord to revive him with His Word; in v. 31, the psalmist clings to God’s “testimonies”, and he pleads to not be put to shame.
So what’s he significance of this?
Well, the psalmist uses the Hebrew word דּבק, which is also used in Genesis 2:24, where Moses writes:
24Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
The psalmist, therefore, points us to two relationships he holds: (1.) to the dust (figuratively speaking, to his ills/suffering/pain/etc), and (2.) the testimonies of God.
I think we are all in the same position that the psalmist finds himself in, for on the one hand our soul clings to the dust and we hope to be revived according to the Word of God; and we also cling to God’s Word, looking past whatever ails us now. And well we would do ;)
But more than this is the fact that Christ once clung to the dust, but was revived according to the Word of God! And Christ, alone, clung perfectly to the Word of God while on this earth and was not put to shame, having loved God and His neighbor perfectly for our sakes.
And now, we cling to Him.
May He remind us of such things:)