Sunday, March 05, 2023

Sunday Scripture


Sunday again, and time for a Scripture post.  Recall, I'm going back to The Book of Psalms One Chapter a Day study from Good Morning Girls.  In Summer 2020 I started this study but had never completed it, so I've decided to go back and finish it up.  This particular book only covers Psalms 101-150, and I had previously completed Psalms 101- 129, so I have a few more to go.  I have purchased another journal covering Psalms 51-100 and will plan to go through that after I finish this one.  

With this study, as I have often done, I used the SOAP method of Bible study.  Just a quick reminder that the S is for Scripture, O is for Observation, A is for Application and P is for Prayer.

Also, there is a reflection question for each psalm.  I don't always answer it, but when I do it will usually follow the SOAP portion of my study.

The Psalm for today is Psalm 131.  Just three verses!

S= "LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty; neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me.
"Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, like a child that is weaned of his mother; my soul is even like a weaned child.
"Let Israel hope in the LORD from henceforth and forever."  (Psalm 131)

Since this psalm is so short, I decided to look at verses 1-2 in the ESV as well:

"O LORD, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.
"But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me."

The verse to zero in on was verse 2, but I chose to look closely at both 1 and 2.

O=  Psalm 131 is one of the fifteen "Songs of Ascents" which include Psalms 120-134.  Most scholars believe that these particular songs were either sung by worshipers from all over Israel as they made their way "up to Jerusalem"  for the great festivals, OR that they were sung by pilgrims on the ascending march from the Babylonian captivity to Jerusalem.  In The Treasury of David, Spurgeon quotes T. Le Blanc, who favors the latter view and thinks "this is a song of the Israelites who returned from Babylon with humbled hearts, weaned from their idols."

C.I. Scofield has titled this psalm "Growing in grace".    

We see that David tells the Lord here:

* My heart is not haughty;
* My eyes are not lofty;
* I don't exercise myself in great matters or in things too high for me;
* I have behaved and quieted myself;
* My soul is like a weaned child.

In my Scofield study Bible, there were no cross-references for either of these verses, for some reason.  But my ESV Bible listed a number of them, so I looked them up in the KJV for additional clarification.

For the phrase "lifted up" there were two cross-references:

"For thus saith the high and lofty One who inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy: I dwell in the high and holy place, with him who is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the hearts of the contrite ones."  (Isaiah 57:15)

"Though the LORD be high, yet hath He respect unto the lowly, but the proud He knoweth afar off."  (Psalm 138:6)

For the phrase "raised too high" there are two cross-references:

"Him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I tolerate." (Psalm 101:5)

"And seekest thou great things for thyself?  Seek them not."  (Jeremiah 45:5)

For the phrase "occupy myself":

"Be of the same mind one toward another.  Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate.  Be not wise in your own conceits." (Romans 12:16)

For the phrase "too marvelous for me":

"Who is he that hideth counsel without knowledge? Therefore have I uttered that which I understood not: things too wonderful for me, which I knew not." (Job 42:3)

And for the phrase "child with his mother":

"Brethren, be not children in understanding; however, in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men."  (1 Corinthians 14:20)

A= To me the phrases "my heart is not lofty, nor mine eyes haughty" speak of humility.  We know that God blesses those who exhibit a humble and contrite spirit.  He resists the proud and gives grace to the humble.  

God also does not want us to meddle with things too great and marvelous for us -- things that are beyond our understanding, areas in which He works as He sees fit.  Instead He would have us calm and quiet ourselves in His presence, resting in His sovereignty and His infinite wisdom.  In one of Elizabeth George's books, she notes that we can take all of the unexplainable things of life and simply file them in between God's wisdom and His knowledge:

"O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God!  how unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!" (Romans 11:33)

Spurgeon notes: "The Psalmist ... had smoothed down the roughness of his self-will; by holy effort he had mastered his own spirit .... It is no easy thing to quiet yourself; sooner may a man calm the sea, or rule the world, or tame a tiger, than quiet himself."

P= "Lord, how very thankful I am for Your Word and even for this little psalm which I have read many times, but which has layers of meaning I had not thought about before.  Help me to be your humble, obedient servant in the responsibilities You've given me in this life -- and help me to rest in Your sovereignty and wisdom concerning all that I don't understand.  Help my calmness and quietness in the storms of life to be a testimony that points others to you.  I ask this in Jesus' name, Amen."

The reflection question for this psalm asks: Are you enjoying your walk with God?  How can you become calmer and quieter in His presence?

My answer:  I am very much enjoying my walk with God.  I'm so thankful for the close walk with Him that He has led me into.  Yet I know that I could become calmer and quieter in His presence by getting to know Him even better and learning to trust Him more.  We get to know God through His Word and through communicating with Him in prayer.  I love the fact that learning more and more about God and His dealings with people and situations is something available to us, something we can apply to every need and concern that we have in this life!

That's our Sunday Scripture for this week.  I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did.


  1. I enjoyed your SOAP today, thanks for sharing. I love the Book of Psalm.

  2. Wonderfully explained. Thank you so much for taking the time to really dissect this verse and explain it. God's Word has so many pearls of wisdom for us, it's wonderful when you can calmly and quietly sit alone with the Lord and "listen" to His voice as you read His Word. Thank you. Hope you have a blessed week. This was a good lesson for today.


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