“Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: so shall I talk of thy wondrous works.”
In the Psalmist’s petition to God of “make me,” he is not asking God to violate his ‘free will’ (whatever that is; since Proverbs 19:21 shows God’s Will is supreme over man’s will). But instead the Psalmist is submitting to God’s ordained method of revealing the way of His precepts.
“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” (James 1:5)
“…yet ye have not, because ye ask not.” (James 4:2)
“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:” (Matthew 7:7)
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)
“In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:6)
From these verses and many others (too many to list), the Word of God reveals that God ordered prayer by the believer to receive supply. The Psalmist understood this process; plus he understood that God is the only Revealer of Truth. (See Deuteronomy 29:29; John 3:27; Matthew 16:13-17.)
The only avenue to discern, or perceive, or understand, Truth is to have the “mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:9-16), or to have received Regeneration by the Spirit of God (Roman 8:14-16; 2 Timothy 1:7-9); wherein you are quickened, or made alive from deadness in sins and trespasses (Ephesian 2:1; John 6:63). You are drawn by God (John 6:44); and taught by God (John 6:45); and then come to confess your sins (Romans 7:15-24). You confess that Christ is your Savior in His Atonement on the Cross (Romans 3:24-25; 10:9-10), the Forgiver of your sin debt; that you have been Reconciled, Redeemed, and declared Righteous (or Justified) in Christ’s Atonement (Ephesians 2:8-9).
When a person is Regenerated and brought to Conversion, then this individual perceives that Truth is in God, who is Truth; and that Revelation of Truth comes only from God; and that he is passive in receiving Truth (1 Corinthians 4:7).
Therefore, the Psalmist petitions God, “Make me to understand the way of thy precepts…” (Psalms 119:27a). That is: God, I need Your revelation of the way of Your precepts. I read what You say to do, but God show me how to ‘do it.’
First, the way is the way of righteousness, holiness, peace, and love.
You may be saying, I see what my responsibility is as a believer, but God, how do I ‘do it’ in my circumstances on a daily basis? “Make me to understand” how I can appropriate Your Way into my life.
The answer is simply:
1) You must surrender to God as Lord and Master;
2) You must submit to God’s Word and Will;
3) You must obey; walk by The Faith; live His Life in your life (Romans 5:10, 17; Galatians 2:20):
“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)
Paul said in Philippians 4:13:
“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
Therefore, it is only through the Power of the indwelling Christ, that you can do His Will.
4) Then endure in the same; be stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58).
Surrender, submission, obedience, and endurance are God’s ordained ways for you to receive the Revelation of Truth. When these steps are followed, by His Power, you will understand “the way of thy precepts.” You will not only know what to do, but how to do it, how to implement God’s Will and Way in your daily life.
Reader, stop trying to understand in your own strength. Come and rest in Jesus; “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).
Live your life in His Life. That is, walk by Faith (or walk by The Faith, Christ) and not by sight (Hebrews 11:6); and you will be rewarded with the understanding of and the power to perform God’s Way.