God’s Way is the best Way
Category : General
Psalm 25: 4 (KJV)
4 Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths.
All right-minded men will agree with Matthew Arnold’s famous saying, that “Conduct is three-fourths of human life.” It will be also admitted that the professed aim of all Churches and religious societies is to regulate and improve conduct.
It is noted that there are two ways in which we may understand this Psalm. The writer may mean it as a prayer for direction, that he may be taught what to do, how to walk so as to please God. Or that God would declare Himself to the petitioner, and manifest to him what he is doing; that God would show His own ways to David, and teach him the issue of the hidden paths in which he was walking towards Him; not the paths the writer ought to follow, but those which the Almighty was pursuing.
The “ways” of God are His methods of administering the affairs of the world; His dispensations; the rules which He has prescribed for Himself in the execution of His plans; the great laws by which He governs the universe. Deut.32:4, “all His ways are judgment; a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He.” The prayer of the psalmist is, that he may be able to understand the methods of the divine government; the principles upon which God bestows happiness and salvation; the rules which He has been pleased to prescribe for human conduct; the arrangements by which He confers favors upon mankind; the scheme by which He saves people. The idea evidently is that he might understand so much of this as to regulate his own conduct aright; that he might not lean upon his own understanding, or trust to His own guidance, but that He might always be under the guidance and direction of God.
The psalmist wishes to know God’s way, to be taught his path, and to be led into his truth. He cannot discern this way unless God show it; he cannot learn the path unless God teach it; and he cannot walk in God’s truth unless God lead him: and even then, unless God continue to teach, he shall never fully learn the lessons of his salvation; therefore he adds, “Lead me in thy truth, and teach me;” Psalm 25:5.That he may get this showing, teaching, and leading, he comes to God, as the “God of his salvation;” and that he may not lose his labor, he “waits on Him all the day.” Many lose the benefit of their earnest prayers, because they do not persevere in them. They pray for a time; get remiss or discouraged; restrain prayer; and thus lose all that was already wrought for and in them.
The text expresses the sincere desire of every Christian. He feels that he needs a Divine Teacher to enable him to understand Divine truth and obey the Divine precepts. Hence he approaches the fountain of all wisdom with the prayer of the text. Lord, keep thy servant in the firm persuasion of thy promises, and do not suffer him to turn aside to the right hand or to the left. When our minds are thus composed to patience, we undertake nothing rashly or by improper means, but depend wholly upon the providence of God. Accordingly, in this place David desires not merely to be directed by the Spirit of God, lest he should err from the right way, but also that God would clearly manifest to him his truth and faithfulness in the promises of his word, that he might live in peace before him, and be free from all impatience.
Let us have confidence in God. If the greatest Being deserves the profoundest reverence; if the kindest Being deserves the heartiest thanks; and if the best of Beings deserves the warmest love, then our highest reverence, thanks, and love are due to God. (H. Woodcock.)
Have a great and godly day!