“How can the past and future be, when the past no longer is, and the future is not yet? As for the present, if it were always present and never moved on to become the past, it would not be time, but eternity.”
That quote from Augustine, Christian philosopher and theologian, was written in the fourth century yet we are still trying to understand the concept of time. The Psalmist of 119:89-96 began this octave with a declaration of God’s word being eternal, perpetual, and continuing. We have a beginning; God does not. We understand life within the framework of time; God does not. He is outside of time. Hard to understand? Yes, but true, nonetheless.
Before time began God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit had a heavenly dialogue and established a Kingdom plan (Matt. 25:31-34; John 5:37-40, 17:4, 24).
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. (John 1:1-2 NKJV)
The Father revealed detail of this plan to the Son; read this excerpt from their conversation:
The LORD said to my Lord, “Sit in the place of honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies, making them a footstool under your feet.” (Psalms 110:1 NLT)
That plan was developed outside of time, is firmly settled in heaven, Super Glued, and nothing can change or alter it. The Psalmist is confident of that faithful truth for all generations and relates, in these verses, that this knowledge got him through his suffering. It’s designed to do the same thing for you. If you make His Word your delight (vs. 92), not a task, it will take you through any trial of life.
… the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God —his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began. (1 Corinthians 2:7 NLT)
Make no mistake, the Psalmist never forgot what his responsibilities were (precepts) and made them his focus. Our relationship with God, first of all, needs to be cultivated with conversation and prayer and His Word sown in our hearts. Secondly, involvement in the local church is a vital component to our servant-attitudes because Christ loves and died for her (Eph. 5:25, 32) and that brings us into resurrection life: kingdom living.
As we follow this author’s line of thinking (vss. 93-95) it’s apparent that remembering what God has done for you in the past will get you through your present and even into your future. We are time-constrained but He is not. His repeated actions on your behalf (testimonies) show His sovereignty and divine love.
I have seen that everything [human] has its limits and end [no matter how extensive, noble, and excellent]; but Your commandment is exceedingly broad and extends without limits [into eternity]. (Psalm 119:96 AMP)