“O how love I thy law!” (Psalm 119:97)
Chrysostom compares the Scripture to a garden set with ornaments and flowers.
A godly man delights to walk in this garden to sweetly solace himself.
He loves every branch and part of the Word:
1. He loves the counseling part of the Word, as it is a directory and rule of life. The Word is the direction sign which points us to our duty. It contains in it things to be believed and practiced. A godly man loves the directions of the Word.
2. He loves the threatening part of the Word. The Scripture is like the Garden of Eden: as it has a tree of life in it, so it has a flaming sword at its gates. This is the threatening of the Word. It flashes fire in the face of every person who goes on obstinately in wickedness. “God will wound the head of his enemies, the hairy scalp of the one who still goes on in his trespasses” (Ps. 68:21). The Word gives no indulgence to evil. It will not let a man halt half-way between God and sin. The true mother would not let the child be divided (1 Kings 3:26), and God will not have the heart divided. The Word thunders out threats against the very appearance of evil. It is like that flying scroll full of curses (Zech. 5:1). A godly man loves the menaces of the Word. He knows there is love in every threat. God would not have us perish; He therefore mercifully threatens us, so that He may scare us from sin. God’s threats are like the buoy, which shows the rocks in the sea and threatens death to such as come near. The threat is a curbing bit to check us so that we may not run in full career to hell. There is mercy in every threat.
3. He loves the consolatory part of the Word—the promises. He goes feeding on these as Samson went on his way eating the honeycomb (Judg. 14:8,9). The promises are all marrow and sweetness. They are reviving to us when we are fainting; they are the conduits of the water of life. “In the multitude of my thoughts within me thy comforts delight my soul” (Ps. 94:19). The promises were David’s harp to drive away sad thoughts; they were the breasts which gave him the milk of divine consolation.
Published by The Banner of Sovereign Grace Truth, used with permission.