I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Psalms 119:11 NIVUK
When we hide something we normally do so to keep it a secret.
Good or bad.
We don’t want others to know, so we can surprise them or because we understand they would think poorly of us.
The Psalmist hides God’s Word.
In the New Testament we are encouraged to take God’s Word to the ends of the Earth.
The Hebrew word ‘hidden’ (to hide) is tsaphan and it only occurs three times.
It has also been translated as treasured, esteemed, or saved.
So to hide God’s Word in our hearts – our intellect and emotions – is to value it so much we keep it close. We keep it in our hearts figuratively and literally. It is the most important thing to us.
God’s ‘Word’ is imrah – His commandment and speech.
God’s Word is not something upon a page, but something which is voiced to us.
When we read scripture from the Bible, the words are active, alive, communicating with us.
These ‘words’ support us in not sinning against the Lord – chata – we will not speak words, or commit actions, which are contrary to God.
We won’t blame, or cause harm, or lead astray.
We hide away God’s Word not just because it is valuable but so it cannot be easily taken away from us.
We keep the good things of the Lord close to us.
If God’s Word – the good things of the Lord – are at arms length, then there is space in which we can become seperated from it.
It was common, even in the time of Jesus, to bring what was valuable into your house overnight. The ground floor of houses were more like our garages, places to put not cars but animals. Things outside the house could easily fall prey to thieves or predators.
Our hearts are like those houses.