James Cagle

James Cagle

The Bible says, “My soul breaketh for the longing that it hath unto thy judgments at all times.” And, “My soul cleaveth unto the dust: quicken thou me according to thy word.” And, “My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word” (Psalms 119:20, 25, 28).

In these three verses we have three states in which the soul, the inner man, may find itself at anytime.

In the first above mentioned verse the writer tells us his soul “breaketh.” Then tells us the reason his soul breaketh is for the longings that he has for the judgments of God all the time.

The Psalmist said something similar in Psalms 42:1-2 — “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before him?” And in Psalms 64:1 — “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is.”

These longings bespeak an intense earnestness of desire to have more knowledge and grace of God. It’s a longing to know more about Jesus.

In the second above mentioned verse the writer tells us his soul “cleaveth unto the dust.”

This cleaving or clinging to the dust bespeaks his inclination for worldly things and a tendency to be attracted to and hold on to the physical, material and temporal. The Psalmist asks God to “quicken” him through His Word. To overcome his attraction to the world and the things of the world he must be revived and renewed and have his affection for God and holy things restored.

In the third above mentioned verse the writer tells us his soul “melteth for heaviness.” In Psalms 107:26 the soul of the sailors in the midst of a storm is “melted because of trouble.” In Psalms 22, a Messianic Psalm, and verse 14, the writer says, “I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.”

This melting of the soul bespeaks the weakness, the dropping, the inability of the inner man to withstand and resist the enemy any longer. The soul or heart melts and is made weak because of heaviness that comes as a result of great suffering and trials. He regains his strength, has his faith renewed and is made strong again through the reading of God’s Word (KJV).

This great heaviness he did not offset with wine (Proverbs 31:6), nor by the pity of others (Psalms 69:20), nor with merriment (Proverbs 14:13), but through Jesus Christ (Matthew 11:28), and for his heaviness he was given a garment of praise (Isaiah 61:3). 

In these verses we see that the longings and desires of the soul are satisfied by the Word. That the wandering soul is revived and made steadfast by the Word. And that the weak soul is strengthened by the Word. God has a Word to help us through any state we are in.

James H. Cagle lives in Ray City, Ga., and is a former Hamilton County resident.

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