The Torah, the Bible for the psalmist, was God’s communication with Israel in order to inform Israel of God’s ways — and its intent was to guide the whole of an Israelite — heart, soul, and strength. Here the psalmist utters one of the few lines of this psalm — from the nun section (119:105-112) — that many have memorized:
“Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light for my path” (v. 105).
The “word” (devar) is a “lamp to my feet.” Israel knew of lamps for the lampstand in the tabernacle and Temple; they fired their lamps with olive oil; they carried torches with them as they walked in the night so they could see (no street lights). Reminds one of the use of a flashlight when one is camping.
The image of a lamp as the revelation of God’s will for Israel and the psalmist is found in the Psalms (18:28) and Proverbs (6:23; 13:9). The light of the righteous shines brightly. And this one: “the human spirit is the lamp of YHWH that sheds light on one’s inmost being” (Prov. 20:27).
A potent statement is found in 2 Sam 22:29, David’s song of redemption: “You, YHWH, are my lamp; YHWH turns my darkness into light”.
The Torah as God’s revelation illumines the responsive Israelite and it gives light for the path of life.