KEY THOT: The psalmist prays to God to "teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes" and to "give me understanding, that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart." There are two important lessons from these two verses: firstly, concerning who the Author of Scripture is; secondly, concerning what the purpose of learning Scripture is. The first lesson: Scripture is a product of human authors writing under inspiration of the Holy Spirit: "For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:21). Therefore, the true Author of Scripture is God, not men. So it makes sense that if we truly want to hear God's word from Scripture, we must turn to the Lord and ask Him to teach us and to give us understanding. But too often, we prefer to ask from men because it requires no personal commitment to know the Lord. These human sources could be our favourite bible teacher, commentator, preacher, mentor, etc. If we want to hear God speaks to us, our first priority is to ask Him for His revelation because He is the Author of Scripture.
The second lesson we can learn from these two verses regards the purpose of learning from Scripture: "that I may keep your law and observe it with my whole heart". As true disciples of Christ, we want to study Scripture not to increase our knowledge but to allow God's truths to change our heart: "and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:32). There is a difference between knowledge and truth. Knowledge is acquired for the head, but truth is received by our heart. Learning the Scripture must not become an end in itself, but rather as a means to the ultimate end--personal transformation. And this transformation has to begin with our heart, not our head.
Father God, deliver us from a love of knowledge apart from truth. Grant us a desire to know Your truth so that we may be transformed in our inner man. Amen.