Devotional Short Note to Psalm 139: The first thing we need to point out is that scholars thought the Psalm is filled with Aramaisms and for that reason especially F. Delitzsch did not want to assign the Psalm to David but to a post-Exilic author who was using Davidic style. Delitzsch was quite a scholar and for him to say this in 1885 makes one wonders if he was too young. Nevertheless, he claimed that because the direct object marker that is supposed to be in Hebrew eth- connected to a noun, is not eth- in this Psalm but l- therefore this common feature in late Aramaic makes it Aramaic influence and a post-exillic date is proposed. We can now say with confidence that such chrono-grammar observations can be shelved. Language appears, disappears and reappears again and there is no fixed or stable chronology to be attached to linguistic elements. In Samuel’s book it is used in 1 Samuel 23:10 to say “do destroy the town” as l-town instead of eth-town. David is in good company if Samuel is pulled closer.

David is aware of the fact that God through His Spirit is very close as he says in 139:7a “where shall I go from Your Spirit?” Therefore the Lord has searched him and knows him (139:1).

What God knows about all of us is everything: stand-up; sit-down; from a long distance God reads the thoughts (139:2); God sift his going around and lying down, and knows all his ways (139: 3); if he speaks God knows what he is going to say (139:4).

For protection God has secure him from the front and back (139:5).

This insight is too high for him, he has never seen this in his life and cannot explain it (139:6).

Running from the Holy Spirit? Thinking to go at a space where the Spirit is not? Impossible: into heaven = He is there; under the earth = He is there (139:8). If he jumps on a ship and goes overseas = He is there (139:9). “Even there would Your hand lead me” (139:10). Some scholars thought that “lifting up the wings of the morning” means the goddess of the morning with wings but that is not what is indicated here. It is the sails of the ship that are hoisted in the morning so that the wind can drive and push the “wings” of the sails of the ship further into the sea. It is that concrete and simple.

If he thought that the darkness my cut him off from the Holy Spirit, “even the darkness is not too dark for You” (139:12).

Here is the reason of all this: God has knitted together everyone that is born on earth for a destiny and a purpose, of course for His good will and glory (139:13). Of course somewhere along the line, truth approaches the person, no matter where, and the light that shines from that illumination should have alight the world and all those around him/her but failing obstinately from such splendor task, shirking the responsibility, ends in self-inflicted pain an disaster. It is the corridor God cannot enter but can wait at the end of it.

All of us are wonderfully made by the Creator (139:14). Are you suffering from a handicap of some kind? All will eventually when they get old. Others just get it earlier but for every handicap that Satan invented for his enjoyment on this earth, God has a solemn right to provide a bonus for such a soul in heaven on his/her behalf more than others who had a full grown bloom life. The Master of the scales is still the Master of the Universe. Rewards are waiting for the patience of the saints.

“My frame was not hidden from You” (139:15). When God was weaving a human in the womb of his/her mother “in secret” for no one can see how it is done, God’s eyes were there with the unformed substance [watch-out abortionists!] (139:16) “and in Your book they were all written”. The Great Book-Keeper is at work here. The Divine Holy Book-Accountant of souls.

“Even the days were formed and not one in them” (139:16). Our days are counted by God.

Dutch Reform Calvinist pastor Danie Steyn in his Youtube video on the Hell explained in late 1968 that a young man came to a pastor to ask: “Pastor, when should I give my heart to God?” The pastor answered: “I do not know, as long as you do it before you die”. The young man left but then came the next day back to the pastor: “Pastor, I have been thinking again: when will I die?” The pastor said: “I do not know, it may be tonight, it may be next year, it may be many years later, it can be any time”. The young man answered: “Then Pastor, I do not wait one moment longer, I want to give my heart to God right now”.

“And to me, how weighty are Your *thoughts, O God. How great are the sum [literally ‘head’] of them” (139:17). *This word is a hapax legoumenon meaning that it appears only once in the Bible according to F. Delitzsch. Scholars tried late Aramaic “desires” or Arabic “concerns” but it is better to suggest that David used a Late Egyptian word r-cwy meaning “gateway” or “gate” as it was used in Middle Egyptian earlier. The context of the Psalm indicate that there are many of them and they can be counted and like the stars in heaven, they are so many that they are like the sand of the sea. Maleachi said that if one pays tithe, see if “I will not open the windows of heaven for you” bestowing blessings. David is on the same wave-length here as Maleachi.

Even if David would count the million and trillions of gates of God’s blessings, then if he comes to the end of all of them, God will not be left behind remotely in a distance “I would still be with You” (139:18).

“If You will slay the wicked O God” (139:19). For that reason he wish the evil to depart from him. He does not want to associate with them since he does not want to get their plaques. David wants to follow the “come out of her My people” command.

The wicked are defined: with a wicked thought in their desires, passions and thoughts they use on their lips the name of God as if He is on their side (139:20).

They reckon God’s name as falsehood, the enemies of God (139:20).

David declared that he hate them that hate the Lord (139:21-22). He counts them as his enemies. But, notice something. David’s religion does not suggest that he should grab a sword and fight God’s war for Him. God can fight His own war. There is no mention of humans that should do the work of killing the wicked because they do not believe in God. A God Who does not expect humans to kill for Him, is worth worshipping for. Is that not right?

David wants God to research and know his innermost thinking (139:23) and God must see if the way is grievous in him (139:24). And should he be outside the way of the Lord, “lead me in the way, everlasting” (139:24). I am not sure if it was dr. Roy Gane of Andrews University’s father pastor Gane who came to our town Vryheid in South Africa in the late sixties when I was very young (1968) to preach for us with a translator and his sermon I can remember since it was taped: “We are on the one-way highway”.