Many writers acknowledge that to be happy is a universal goal of men and women. The only people who do not want to be happy are abnormal. But apart from being instructed by God, human beings do not know how to achieve happiness. They think they will be happy if they can earn enough money, be respected by those with whom they work, acquire enough power to do whatever they like or to be free from all restraints, or discover someone who will love them without conditions. But these pursuits do not ensure happiness, and sin always warps and destroys even the best achievements. 

Not long ago we were studying the shortest psalm in the Psalter, which is also the shortest chapter in the Bible. Here, two psalms later, we are dealing with the longest psalm and the longest chapter. Psalm 117 contained two verses and five lines. Psalm 119 contains 176 verses and 315 lines. The first tells us to praise God. This psalm praises God for his Word, the Bible, because God has given us the Bible and it is only through the Bible that we can come to know who God is and how to praise him. 

The last three verses are a powerful summary and application of all the psalm has been saying up to this point, and they are the last section I want to draw to your attention.

When we were studying Psalm 115, I noted that the last two verses of that psalm say rightly that it is not the dead who praise the Lord but the living: 

It is not the dead who praise the LORD,
those who go down to silence;
It is we who extol the LORD,
both now and forevermore (vv. 17, 18). 

The second passage I call to your attention consists of two verses, verses 8 and 9. And this is why. It is reported by people who count such things that there are 31,174 verses in the Bible, and if that is so, then these verses, the 15,587th and the 15,588th, are the middle verses. That should be reason enough to give them prominence.