Psalm 139:17-18

Fancy Light Bulb

Psalm 139:17-18,

          17       How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!

   How great is the sum of them!

          18       If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand;

   When I awake, I am still with You.

Have you spent any time pondering God’s thoughts? How would we know what thoughts God thinks? As humans we are limited to thinking one thought at a time. We may think we have a million things on our minds, but the truth is we can only entertain a single thought at a time. Our minds are capable of switching back and forth from thought to thought at incredible speeds, but the fact remains we can only think one thought at a time. Thoughts other than the one we are currently thinking are stored in short term memory where each one can be recalled at will. Our minds are indeed an amazingly complex and wonderful creation of God.

As wonderful as our minds are they pale in comparison to the mind of God. In Romans 11:34 Paul quotes, “For who has known the mind of the LORD? Or who has become His counselor?

Consider Isaiah 40:13-14,

         13       Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD,
   Or as His counselor has taught Him?
          14       With whom did He take counsel, and who instructed Him,
   And taught Him in the path of justice?
   Who taught Him knowledge,
   And showed Him the way of understanding?

In Job 9:10 Job said,

He does great things past finding out,

   Yes, wonders without number.

If God’s ways are past finding out couldn’t we logically conclude that His thoughts are beyond our comprehension? Yet in contrast David says, “How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!” How could David possibly know even a small portion of God’s thoughts? If we are at all familiar with the Holy Bible we know that God is in the revealing business.

God has and is communicating to man through general revelation (we see God in creation), and special revelation, the Bible. The Bible itself is the mind of God as revealed to man. So like David we can know some of the thoughts of God by observing His creative acts as portrayed in creation. We can also know the thoughts of God as we read and study His message to us, His Holy Word, the Bible.

But I think David is implying relationship. David knows the thoughts of God as God revealed them to him through ongoing two way communication. Are we in deep sustained relationship with God? Do we hear from Him? Does God hear from us?

God’s grace and love toward us is demonstrated in the thoughts He reveals to us. But I also think His love and grace toward us is demonstrated in the fact that God does not reveal all that He thinks. We would not be able to comprehend most of what God thinks – It would simply overwhelm and confuse us.

Notice the last part of verse 18. It says, “ When I awake, I am still with You.” Can’t you just hear David saying, God you are so wonderful! You stay with me even as I sleep. You are watching over me constantly, and You never stop thinking about me! God you are wonderful!

If we were to examine our own thought life what would we discover? Are we constantly thinking about God? Would the things we think about be honoring to God, or would we be ashamed before Him? I know it takes a great amount of effort, and many times we fail, but I believe we should constantly strive to please the Lord in our thinking.

Remember Psalm 19:14. It says,

         14       Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

   Be acceptable in Your sight,
   O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer.

Philippians 4:8 should be considered together with verses 6 and 7 which are talking about prayer. It says,

    8       Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

Thinking thoughts toward God and thinking thoughts about God is not some unreasonable burden, but it does take effort. Anything worth doing requires we set aside time to do it. Begin today. Start thinking about who God is and what He has done. Spend some extra time in His word today. Commune with our heavenly Father in prayer. Get around other like minded believers who love God and who love to talk about Him.

Lastly, let me encourage you to not forsake the gathering of yourselves together. Honor God by attending a Bible believing, Bible teaching church on Sunday mornings.


All Bible quotations are from The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982. Print unless otherwise specified.

1 Reply to "Psalm 139:17-18"

  • Roger Streifel
    March 20, 2018 (4:35 pm)

    He is thinking of us ALL the time. Ooh! Convicting! Do I spend almost ALL my time thinking or focusing on the Lord? Not even close

Got something to say?

Some html is OK