Better Than Life


On my jog this morning, an old chorus came to mind about the “loving kindness” of God (“Thy loving kindness is better than life” from Psalm 63:3). As I jogged along my route I thought about the significance of that verse. In the King James Bible, the verse says “Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.” I am no scholar, but I know there are several renditions of the expression “loving kindness” when other versions of the Bible are used. Some of the ones I found are “love”, “unfailing love”, “steadfast love”, “gracious love”, “loyal love”, “mercy” and “mercies”. After the jog, research into the expression revealed that it is regularly used in the context of relationship. Reading some commentaries on the verse led me to the understanding that God’s “lovingkindness” toward us is fully revealed in Jesus Christ. The unfailing love of God, His act of giving His Only Begotten Son as the Sacrifice for my sins so that I might have Eternal Life, is “better” than life (the temporary experience of mortality in the flesh). In other words, to know God in a personal relationship, to be able to call out to Him “Abba, Father” and know that He hears me as His child—these things are better than life.

A second thing I found in my research is that the expression “lovingkindness” carries with it the expectation that one who experiences that “lovingkindness” is expected to return similar love and faithfulness to the Giver. That is why the Psalmist says “Because Thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise Thee.” My prayer today is that I will recognize the true value and worth of God’s favor toward me and that I will truly express my gratitude to Him in the way that I live. After all, His gracious love IS better than life!

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~ by brotherfaron on June 2, 2015.

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