My Father’s Eyes

The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. Ps 19:8

So, the final test of love is obedience. Not sweet emotions, not willingness to sacrifice, not zeal, but obedience to the commandments of Christ. Our Lord drew a line plain and tight for everyone to see. On one side he placed those who keep His commandments and said, “These love me.” On the other side He put those who keep not His sayings, and said, “These love Me not.” A. W. Tozer

Introduction: We have discovered in Psalm 19 a God who reveals Himself by speaking. The psalmist shows two ways in which God communicates to mankind: 1] Through the works of His hands; and, 2] through the words of His law.

In verses 1-6, the psalmist tells how God shows forth his power and beauty through the awesome creation He has laid out before us. He speaks words without words, that is, he communicates his “eternal power and divine nature” [Romans 1:20] through that which he has made with his hands. Through His creation God speaks continuously, day after day and night after night. And, He speaks everywhere, to every speech and language and to every place on the globe. As radiant as the sun, his speech is like beams shed forth in unreserved joy, like that of a groom bursting forth to receive the bride of his passion. It is like the unwavering enthusiasm of a champion who delights at the thought of victory in the battle of the day. This glory, shining upon every molecule of creation, bathes all created things in the warmth of God’s gracious blessings.      

Sadly, because the eyes of mankind have been blinded by sin, men fail to see the glory of God in this awesome display of God’s splendor. General revelation is sufficient to remove man’s excuse, but insufficient to change his heart. So, when men observe the power and order of creation they ascribe its origin to cosmic chance and materialistic evolution. Instead of seeing “through” creation to its glorious Creator, it fixes its gaze upon that which is made rather than its Maker. Instead of worshipping the Creator man worships the created. Cut off from God and his joy, man seeks his pleasure and purpose in himself and his deceitful passions. Blind, dead and left to himself, he is unable to know God and enjoy the eternal pleasures that are found only in the worship of the splendor of God’s glory.

In verse 7-11, the psalmist introduces a different kind of speaking. This speech has power to create life and open eyes and soften hearts. The psalmist calls it the law of the Lord. It is God’s speech written down. Through God’s Word, alive by His Spirit, God creates a covenant people from the dead and blind and unbelieving peoples of the earth.

“The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul.” It is totally sufficient to create life in the soul of man so that he can see and know his Creator in an intimate and satisfying way. “The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.” God’s testimony speaks truth to our heart that is so weighty and deep, that it closes the door on all theories and temptations that would seek to deprive God’s people of His beauty. “The precepts of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart.” Not only is God’s law perfect and trustworthy, it is real and right. What God has said brings us to One who is the glorious center of all things. He is the eternal and invisible Reality that brings unending delight to our soul. So, God speaks by His Word to powerfully transform rebels into a family who glorify God by enjoying Him forever.    

“I believe that it is the teaching of this movement in the psalm that God reveals his glory in His Word more than in all of creation.” Ronald Barclay Allen

Exposition: “The commandments of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.” Psalm 19:8

The issuing of commands assumes that there is one who has authority, who has the power and the wisdom to issue them with the expectation that they will be obeyed with full and enthusiastic compliance. It could also be added that commandments are issued in the context of battle and are given for the purpose of attaining victory in the conflict.

When we turn to our verse we see all of these elements in place. The commands that are being given come from the Supreme Commander of the universe. He has all power by nature of His being. No force in heaven or on earth can challenge his unique and lofty status. As the Creator of all things he is the unquestioned ruler of all things He has made.
His commands are not the ramblings of some second lieutenant fresh out of the academy. He knows all things from eternity past to eternity future. He knows everything that exists and everything that happens to its minutest detail. And, He knows every enemy of His plan and every strategy the enemy may devise. Every command is a part of His overall strategy to bring about complete victory for Him and His people. What he commands will happen and happens in the most effective manner for the purposes He has determined, to bring about His greatest glory. So, when He commands it is for the highest good of his follower and the highest praise of His name.

There is one element that is added here, that you will not find in most military structures of command. There is relationship. Our Commander is not only our Lord, He is our Father. He wants only our good. Every command that He issues from His Word is precisely designed to enable us to win victories that will bless us and honor Him.

Our problem is that sin has cut us off from that relationship with God. We do not trust nor do we naturally obey Him. Our lives are centered in a confidence in ourselves, in our perspectives, in our desires and our plans. We are blind to the glory of God and deaf to His voice. Then, we hear God’s sufficient Word and faith is birthed in our hearts. Graciously, God has taken the initiative to come to us with His life-giving Word. Suddenly we see through the beauty of the creation to the beauty of the Creator. We are enabled to see “the glory of God in the face of Christ.” The light of the glory of God pierces our darkness so that we see in God and His plan what is eternally best for us. Where once we found God’s commands burdensome, we now find them precious. Love of God has driven out fear. “This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome.” [1 John 5:2-3]

So, we open God’s Word to learn what He requires. To know God’s commands and to obey them is to get caught up in God’s awesome plans to bless His people and glorify His name. Nothing can stop the man who obeys the light giving commands that come from the Sovereign One who rules over all. Here is Tozer’s description of our Leader: 

“Toward all this God is moving with infinite wisdom and perfect precision of action. No one can dissuade Him from His purposes; nothing turn Him aside from His plans. Since He is omniscient, there can be no unforeseen circumstances, no accidents. As He is sovereign, there can be no countermanded orders, no breakdown in authority, and as he is omnipotent, there can be no want of power to achieve His chosen ends. God is sufficient unto Himself for all things.”

Here is our hope and our marching orders for today and always. It matters not what kind of enemy or struggle we are facing. God has promised us blessing and victory if we will do what He has commanded us. 

“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Josh 1:6-9

To see life with God’s eyes and to live your life according to His commands is the secret to a prosperous and successful life. If you will seek out His commands in His Word, and seek to obey them with all the strength he provides, His presence will guide and strengthen you wherever you go and in whatever you do. You have His Word on that, and God does not lie! Don’t compromise. keep fighting. Obey every command. Win big!

“Compromise will take the pressure off. Satan will not bother the man who has quit fighting. But the cost of quitting will be a life of peaceful stagnation. We sons of eternity just cannot afford such a thing.” A. W. Tozer