One thing we often don't appreciate is the beauty of God's word. Some of this beauty can at times be lost in translation. This Psalm is an interesting one. Through the movement of the Psalm David seeks forgiveness, asks for divine instruction, and cries out to God for help. This cycle is repeated once more for emphasis. Unlike English poetry, in which the climax of a poem is often at the end, in Hebrew poetry the central idea of the psalm is actually at the center of the Psalm most often, as is the case here in verses 8-10. Sandwiched between these two cycles is this message;
8 Good and upright is the LORD;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
9 He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
10 All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.
What the Psalmist is saying here is that through the cycles in our life and in our times of greatest need, we can rest on the knowledge of the character of who God is. It is written using a Hebrew acrostic. Each line in the poem begins with the subsequent letter of the Hebrew alphabet. This goes from its English equivalent, from "A" to "Z". Why is this? In the same way we use the phrase “from A to Z” to include everything, a similar idea existed in Hebrew poetry. Something that was considered incredibly important, always true, and a central idea of life was written in this acrostic model to emphasize that it is something that can be counted and relied on. Do we trust in the character of God in our lives? In the cycles of sin and forgiveness, the times in which we need wisdom and teaching, and the days when we simply cry out for help, do we really believe that God is who He said He is? He is. In every situation from A to Z we can rest and trust in the character of who God is.
Why Must We Fear God? (Psalm 25:12-14)
“If we are haunted by God, nothing else can get in, no cares, no tribulation, no anxieties. We see now why Our Lord so emphasized the sin of worry. How can we dare be so utterly unbelieving when God is round about us? To be haunted by God is to have an effective barricade against all the onslaughts of the enemy.
‘His soul shall dwell at ease.’ In tribulation, misunderstanding, slander, in the midst of all these things, if our life is hid with Christ in God, He will keep us at ease. We rob ourselves of the marvelous revelation of this abiding companionship of God. ‘God is our Refuge’—nothing can come through that shelter.
In other words we fear God, not in the same way as we might fear an angry tyrant or bloodthirsty dictator, but we fear Him because He is God. If our fears are not rested squarely in Him, we will have no end of fear. He is our shelter and our tower; if we fear Him we have no need to fear anything else.