"a self evident truth"
PSALM 119:1-8 ALEPH
Returning to the original Hebrew design and intent
1 Blessed [are] the undefiled in the way, Who walk in the law of the LORD!
41 Let Your mercies come also to me, O LORD-Your salvation according to Your word.
41 Forbid not that Your mercies come also to me, O LORD-Your salvation, according to Your word
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From ancient times the Jewish people have revered the Word of God. Taking literally the commandment to keep the Word before your eyes at all times, they attached 'frontlets' to their foreheads (small packets containing key Scriptures). In addition, certain inspired passages were revealed as 'acrostics'. This began to be used as a 'mnemonic' device to help remember or memorize Scripture. The 119th Psalm is one of those passages. It contains 176 verses which are divided into twenty-two 8-verse sections; one section for each of the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet. This Psalm is also unique in that each of the 176 verses (making it the longest chapter in the Bible) is a statement of faith in God's Holy Word. Hebrew children were taught to memorize the entire Psalm by using the alphabet as a guide. To my knowledge however, this benefit has never, until now, been passed on to readers using other language translations.
The English translation you see on this page is taken from the 'updated' King James Version, also known as The New King James Version (© 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc., used by permission). First you will see the current translation, then just below, the 'acrostic' version accomplished by rearranging or substituting a comparable word (or words) to begin the verse with a closely related English letter. Mr. Johnson has been an ardent student (and teacher) of Scripture for over thirty years and much of that study along with constant prayer has lovingly enveloped this project.
Great pains have been taken to retain the original Hebrew meaning as well as the original translators' intent and understanding of the original Hebrew. Beyond that, extreme pains have been taken to retain the 'flow' and the 'rhythm' (and even the 'music', if you will) that was miraculously instilled in the Hebrew as well as in the original English versions. Familiar passages (e.g., vss. 11, 105) also retain their recognizable message and connection to the original.
Our prayer is that a new generation of children can come to appreciate the wonder, and majesty, and magnitude of the Word of God through memorizing passages from this Psalm (and others to come) just as the ancients did before Bibles became so ubiquitous (Psalm 119:100). Also that this work would provide fodder for adult and youth Bible studies and even sermon series. A devotional is being published as well, based on the "NAV" (New Acrostic Version) which hopefully will extend appreciation of God's Word through this marvelous Psalm.
PSALM 119:41-48 VAU