In the section called ZAYIN of Psalm 119, the passage says this in the ESV:
Hot indignation seizes me because of the wicked,
who forsake your law.
Your statutes have been my songs
in the house of my sojourning.
Has hot indignation ever seized you because of wickedness in your circle of family or friends? The KJV calls it horror that seizes the righteous. I know if you have lived very long as a child of God, you have experienced this spiritual seizure. The word of interest here, translated hot indignation or horror, means a glow of wind or anger, a consuming famine, a burning or raging heat. Has sin that affects your household ever made you feel that way?
The word is found one more time in the Psalms. It’s in chapter 11, where the psalmist says this:
The Lord tests the righteous,
but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.
Let him rain coals on the wicked;
fire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.
For the Lord is righteous;
he loves righteous deeds;
the upright shall behold his face.
The scorching wind of this passage is the horror or hot indignation of God on the wicked. This is the prayer of the righteous man…that God would allow a scorching wind to be the portion (or inheritance) of the wicked.
Notice one distinction as we think about this word.
Hot indignation seizes the righteous. But there’s a remedy. The horror is sandwiched between these two verses:
When I think of your rules from of old,
I take comfort, O Lord (v. 52)
I remember your name in the night, O Lord,
and keep your law.
This blessing has fallen to me,
that I have kept your precepts (vs.55-56).
But the horror of the wicked is described as their portion (their allotment by providence or law.) It (along with fire and brimstone and snares) is what has been reserved and allotted to the enemies of God. It’s their inheritance (Psalm 11:6).
It’s a temporary seizure with a remedy vs. a portion or final allotment. I choose the seizure of temporary horror inflicted on the people of God. I do not want the portion of horror that is eternal. When it’s the darkest and I am terrorized by the enemies of my Father, I will remember His name in the night. I take comfort in His name.