Psalm 37:31
The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Psalm 37:31. The law of his God is in his heart — According to God’s command, Deuteronomy 6:6, and promise, Jeremiah 31:33. His thoughts, and meditations, and affections are fixed upon it. He doth not talk religiously with design, or with ostentation, but out of the abundance of his heart, Matthew 12:35. None of his steps shall slide — Or, slip, or swerve from the rule of God’s law. His piety and virtue shall continue and increase: or, God will uphold and preserve him from falling into that mischief which wicked men plot against him.37:21-33 The Lord our God requires that we do justly, and render to all their due. It is a great sin for those that are able, to deny the payment of just debts; it is a great misery not to be able to pay them. He that is truly merciful, will be ever merciful. We must leave our sins; learn to do well, and cleave to it. This is true religion. The blessing of God is the spring, sweetness, and security of all earthly enjoyments. And if we are sure of this, we are sure not to want any thing good for us in this world. By his grace and Holy Spirit, he directs the thoughts, affections, and designs of good men. By his providence he overrules events, so as to make their way plain. He does not always show them his way for a distance, but leads them step by step, as children are led. God will keep them from being ruined by their falls, either into sin or into trouble, though such as fall into sin will be sorely hurt. Few, if any, have known the consistent believer, or his children, reduced to abject, friendless want. God forsakes not his saints in affliction; and in heaven only the righteous shall dwell for ever; that will be their everlasting habitation. A good man may fall into the hands of a messenger of Satan, and be sorely buffeted, but God will not leave him in his enemy's hands.The law of his God is in his heart - That is, he loves it; he thinks of it; he makes it the inward rule of his conduct: Deuteronomy 6:6; Psalm 40:8 The word "law" here is a general term for the truth of God - for all that he has revealed to guide men. As long as that truth is in the heart; as long as it is the object of love; as long as it is suffered to guide and control us, so long will our words and conduct be right.

None of his steps shall slide - Margin, "goings." The idea is, that his course will be firm and steady. He will not fall into sin, and his life will be prosperous and happy. This is in accordance with the general sentiment in the psalm, that religion tends to promote prosperity, happiness, and length of days on the earth.

31. steps—or, "goings"—for conduct which is unwavering (Ps 18:36). According to God’s command, Deu 6:6, and promise, Hebrews 8:10. His thoughts, and meditations, and affections are fixed upon it. He doth not talk religiously in design, or with ostentation, but out of the abundance of his heart, Matthew 12:35.

None of his steps shall slide: this passage describes either,

1. His safety, consequent upon his piety; God will uphold and preserve him from falling into that mischief which wicked men plot against him. Or rather,

2. His virtue or piety; which is evidenced by his words, Psalm 37:30, by his heart, in the former part of this verse, and by his actions, in these words. His steps or goings (i.e. his actions) shall not (or rather, do not; for this verb, though future, may and should be rendered by the present, as futures frequently are in the Hebrew language, and as the two foregoing future verbs are rendered, Psalm 37:30) slide, or slip, or swerve, to wit, from the rule, or from God’s law; which is to be understood as that passage, Psalm 99:3, They do no iniquity, and some such expressions, not simply and absolutely, as if all good men were sinless; which is abundantly confuted, both by many scriptures and by universal experience; but comparatively, and in respect of his design, and course, or custom. His conversation is ordinarily regular and unblamable. He not only begins well, but constantly perseveres in God’s ways, and will not be drawn to forsake God and religion upon any terms. The law of his God is in his heart,.... Which may be understood of the moral law, which was written in the heart of Adam an his creation, and continued there during his state of innocence, but was greatly obliterated by sin: there are some remains of it in fallen man, even in the very Gentiles; who, though without the law, do some things contained in it, which shows the work of it to be written in them; though in some it is scarcely legible, having lost all distinction between good and evil: but in regeneration the law of God is reinscribed, according to the promise of the covenant of grace, Jeremiah 31:33; and such have a real knowledge of the spirituality and perfection of it; of the impossibility of justification by it; and of Christ being the fulfilling end of it: and they have a strong affection for it; they love it; and delight in it after the inward man, and serve it with their minds; in which lies part of their conformity to Christ, and is a branch of their character as good men; see Psalm 40:8; moreover, the word here used, signifies any doctrine or instruction, and is sometimes used for the doctrine of the Gospel, Isaiah 2:3, and may have this sense here, and the meaning be, that that has a place in the hearts or righteous men, dwells richly there, and works effectually in them; and particularly the doctrine of grace which relates to covenant interest in God; for it is the law or doctrine of "his God" that is in his heart;

none of his steps shall slide; not that he shall never slip nor fall; for that is supposed Psalm 37:24; but he shall never finally and totally go out of the paths of truth, holiness, and righteousness: the Lord keeps the feet of his saints, and orders their steps, and directs them in the way they should go, and preserves them in it; and enables them to walk uprightly, according to the rule of the divine word, and in all his commandments and ordinances; and to hold on and out unto the end: or the clause may be rendered, "it", the law, "shall not cause his steps to slide" (b); neither the law of God, nor the Gospel of Christ, but shall guide him in the right way, and be a lamp unto his feet, and a light unto his path.

(b) "non vacillat gressus ejus", Cocceius.

The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
31. Cp. Psalm 119:11. God’s law, treasured in his heart, regulates all his conduct. Without wavering or variation he pursues the path of right. Cp. Psalm 26:1; Psalm 73:2.Verse 31. - The Law of his God is in his heart (camp. Deuteronomy 6:6; Psalm 40:8; Psalm 119:11; Isaiah 51:7). None of his steps shall slide. The two facts are associated as cause and effect. The having the Law of God in his heart prevents his sliding or going astray. There is an old theological rule: promissiones corporales intelligendae sunt cum exceptione crucis et castigationis. Temporary forsakenness and destitution the Psalm does not deny: it is indeed even intended to meet the conflict of doubt which springs up in the minds of the God-fearing out of certain conditions and circumstances that are seemingly contradictory to the justice of God; and this it does, by contrasting that which in the end abides with that which is transitory, and in fact without the knowledge of any final decisive adjustment in a future world; and it only solves its problem, in so far as it is placed in the light of the New Testament, which already dawns in the Book of Ecclesiastes.
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