The Structure of Psalm 119
and
Does Every Verse of Psalm 119 refer to Scripture?


Copyright © 2016 by Daniel B. Sedory

More Hebrew words will be added to this page in the future

 

Does Every Verse of Psalm 119 refer to Scripture?

Answer: Most of them do (171), but there are 5 verses which do not contain a word or phrase for Scripture[1]. Each verse that does refer to Scripture is listed further below with the word or phrase used to do so.

The Structure of Psalm 119:

Its verses are comprised of 22 sections of 8 verses each (22 x 8 = 176), and the first word of each verse begins with the same Hebrew letter in each section; those letters being in the same ascending order as the Hebrew alphabet. It should also be noted that most English Bibles start each section wtih a transliteration of that Hebrew letter.

By way of example, we list here an English transliteration for each of these 22 Hebrew letters and the first word (in Hebrew; with transliteration) for each of the 22 sections:

 
Section
 
Verses:
First Word
 
Transliteration
Translation
 
Aleph. ( א )
 
  1-  8
אַשְׁרֵי
   ar  Blessed
 
Beth. ( ב )
 
  9- 16
בַּמֶּה
   Bamm
 
Gimel. ( ג )
 
 17- 24
גְּמֹל
   Gml
 
Daleth. ( ד )
 
 25- 32
דָּבְקָה
   Dbq cleaves (clings to)
 
He. ( ה )
 
 33- 40
הֹורֵנִי
   
 
Vav. ( ו )
 
 41- 48
וִיבֹאֻנִי
   
 
Zayin. ( ז )
 
 49- 56
זְכֹר־דָּבָר
   
 
Heth. ( ח )
 
 57- 64
חֶלְקִי
   Helq
 
Teth. ( ט )
 
 65- 72
טֹוב
   
 
Yodh. ( י )
 
 73- 80
יָדֶיךָ
   
 
Kaph. ( כ )
 
 81- 88
כָּלְתָה
   
 
Lamedh. ( ל )
 
 89- 96
לְעֹולָם
   
 
Mem. ( מ )
 
 97-104
מָה־אָהַבְתִּי
   
 
Num. ( נ )
 
105-112
נֵר־לְרַגְלִי
   
 
Samekh. ( ס )
 
113-120
סֵעֲפִים
   
 
Ayin. ( ע )
 
121-128
עָשִׂיתִי
   
 
Pe. ( פ )
 
129-136
פְּלָאֹות
   
 
Tsadhe. ( צ )
 
137-144
צַדִּיק
   
 
Qoph. ( ק )
 
145-152
קָרָאתִי
   
 
Resh. ( ר )
 
153-160
רְאֵה־עָנְיִי
   
 
Shin. ( ש )
 
161-168
שָׂרִים
   Srm Princes (or Rulers)
 
Tav. ( ת )
 
169-176
תִּקְרַב
   Tiqrab

 

The following are the phrases Psalm 119 uses to refer to God's Word or portions of it (such as the Law). Since some of these verses refer to Scripture twice, there are actually more references in total[2] than the number of verses. For each phrase given in the list below, you will find the verses that contain it. Any verse numbers followed by a number in parentheses, means that verse has two different references to Scripture in it; for example, verse 16 has both "Your word" and "Your statutes" in it.

Your Word [דְבָרֶֽךָ; dbrek] (33):
9, 11, 16(1), 17, 25, 28, 38, 41, 42, 50, 58, 65, 67, 74, 76, 81, 82, 89, 101, 105, 107, 114, 116,
133, 140, 148, 154, 158, 160(1), 162, 169, 170, 172(1)

Your Law (23):
18, 29, 34, 44, 51, 53, 55, 61, 70, 77, 85, 92, 97, 109, 113, 126, 136, 142, 150, 153, 163, 165, 174

Your Statutes (22):
5, 8, 12, 16(2), 23, 26, 33, 48(1), 54, 64, 68, 71, 80, 83, 112, 117, 118, 124, 135, 145, 155, 171

Your Precepts (21):
4, 15(1), 27, 40, 45, 56, 63, 69, 78, 87, 93, 94, 100, 104, 110, 128, 134, 141, 159, 168(1), 173

Your Testimonies (21):
14, 22, 24, 31, 36, 46, 59, 79, 95, 99, 111, 119, 125, 129, 138, 144, 146, 152, 157, 167, 168(2)

Your Commandments (20):
6, 10, 19, 21, 32, 35, 47, 48(2), 60, 66, 73, 86, 98, 127, 131, 143, 151, 166, 172(2), 176

Your Ordinances (11):  20, 30, 39, 43(1), 52, 91, 102, 108, 149, 156, 175

Your Words (6):  57, 103, 130, 139, 147, 161

Your Righteous Ordinances (4):  62, 106, 160(2), 164

Your Judgments (3):  75, 120, 137

Your Ways (2):  15(2), 37

His Testimonies (1):  2

His Ways (1):  3

The Commandments of my God (1):  115

The Law of the LORD (1):  1

The Law of Your Mouth (1):  72

The Ordinances of Your Mouth (1):  13

The Testimony of Your Mouth (1):  88

The Word (1):  49

The Word of Truth (1):  43(2)

Your Commandment (1):  96

Your Righteous Judgments (1):  7

Your Righteous Word (1):  123

 

Footnotes

1[Return to Text]   These verses do not have a word or phrase in them that refers to Scripture:
84, 90 (has: "Your faithfulness"), 121, 122 and 132 (has: "Your manner" and "Your name" in it).

2[Return to Text]   33 + 23 + 22 + 21 + 21 + 20 + 11 + 6 + 4 + 3 + 2 + (12 of one time each) = 178 references to God's Word.


First Published: February 7, 2016. (2016.02.07)

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