December 23, 2013
READ: Psalm 119:105-112
Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path (v.105).
During World War II, Waldemar Semenov (a retired merchant seaman) was serving as a junior engineer aboard the SS Alcoa Guide when a German submarine surfaced and opened fire on the ship. The American merchant ship was hit, caught fire and began to sink. Three hundred miles off the coast of North Carolina, Semenov and the other sailors lowered lifeboats into the water. Fortunately the lifeboats were equipped with a compass. Semenov and his crew used the compass to sail west by northwest towards the shipping lanes. After three days a patrol plane spotted Semenov’s lifeboat and the USS Broome rescued the men the next day. Thanks to that compass, Semenov and 26 other crewmembers were saved.
The psalmist reminded God’s people that their lifeboat was equipped with a trustworthy compass as well—God’s Word. He likened God’s Word to a lamp (Psalm 119:105). The flickering light cast by an olive oil lamp was only bright enough to show a traveller his next step. To the psalmist, God’s Word was such a lamp, providing enough light to illuminate the path of life for those pursuing obedience to God (vv.106,109). When he was adrift in the dark and chaotic waters of life, he believed God would provide spiritual longitude and latitude through His Word. In another psalm, the writer said God’s light and truth would guide him (43:3).
When we lose our bearings in life, we have the Bible as our compass, leading us into deeper fellowship with God and directing our lives to please Him. Because His Word is a trustworthy compass and has the ability to save our lives, let’s determine to read it, study it and obey it. It’s truly the “light for our path” (119:105). —Marvin Williams
Read 2 Timothy 3:16-17 and see why we should use Scripture to guide our lives.
When are you tempted not to follow the directions the compass of God’s Word provides? What are some practical steps you can take to continue to walk in obedience to God’s Word?