October 30 2022
Today, Sunday October 30
“Shall Never Be Moved”
LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill?
He who walks uprightly, And works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart; He who does not backbite with his tongue, Nor does evil to his neighbor, Nor does he take up a reproach against his friend; In whose eyes a vile person is despised, But he honors those who fear the LORD; He who swears to his own hurt and does not change; He who does not put out his money at usury, Nor does he take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be moved.
Psalm 15 ends with a great promise and word of encouragement for those who are seeking the Lord and are willing to obey His principles and precepts. One translation says it this way: "He who does these things will never be shaken". This means that the godly described in this psalm have security and stability in life and don't have to be afraid of earthquakes or eviction notices. "Moved" comes from a Hebrew word that refers to a violent shaking (Psalm 46:3-4; 82:5; 93:1; 96:10; Isa. 24:18-20). God's promise to the godly is that they are firmly grounded on His covenant promises and need not fear. "He who does the will of God abides forever" (1 John 2:17).
Three basic areas of life are named in verse 2 and they are blameless character, righteous conduct, and truthful conversation. Then these are applied specifically and practically in verses 3-5a. If we are right in these basic virtues, we will "work them out" in every area of life and be obedient to the Lord. Walk, work, and speak are present participles, indicating that the dedicated believer is constantly obeying the Lord and seeking to please Him.
My friend, seeking the Lord involves a blameless character or what we also call integrity. (vv. 1a, 4a, 4b). What we are largely determines what we do and say, so the first emphasis is on godly character. (See Isa. 33:14-16; 58:1-12; Jer. 7:1-7; Ezek. 18:5-9; Hos. 6:6; Mic. 6:6-8; Matt. 5:1-16.) "Blameless" doesn't mean "sinless," for nobody on earth is sinless. Blameless has to do with soundness of character, integrity, complete loyalty to God. Noah was blameless (Gen. 6:9), and the Lord admonished Abraham to be blameless (Gen. 17:1), that is, devoted wholly to the Lord. People with integrity will honor others who have integrity and who fear the Lord (Ps. 15:4; 119:63). They will not be deceived by the flatterers (Ps. 12:2-3) or enticed by the sinful (Ps. 1:1).
Next, we must have righteous conduct which is honesty (vv. 2b, 5a, 5b). People who "work righteousness" are honest in their own dealings and concerned that justice be done in the land. In the ancient Jewish monarchy, there wasn't much the average citizen could do about crooked judges or extortion (Eccl. 3:16-17; 4:1-3). In verse 5, David applied the principle of honesty to two areas: asking for exorbitant interest and accepting bribes. Both were "sins in good standing" in the days of the divided kingdom, and the prophets preached against both sins (Isa. 1:23; 5:23; 10:2; Ezek. 22:12; Amos 5:11-12). The Jews were not permitted to charge other Jews interest (Ex. 22:25; 23:7-8; Lev. 25:35-38; Deut. 23:20), and judges were warned not to accept bribes (Ex. 23:8; Deut. 10:17-18; 27:25; 2 Chron. 19:5-7). There can be no justice in a society where money tells the court what is right or wrong.
Lastly, there must be truthful conversation or sincerity (vv. 2c, 3-4c). Truth is the cement that holds society together. If people can get away with lies, then every promise, agreement, oath, pledge, and contract is immediately destroyed. The false witness turns a trial into a travesty and causes the innocent to suffer. But we must speak truth in love (Eph. 4:15) and use truth as a tool to build relationships as well as a weapon to fight deception. When truth is in the heart, then the lips will not speak lies, spread gossip (Lev. 19:16), or attack the innocent. People with truthful hearts will keep their vows and promises (Deut. 23:22-24; Eccl. 5:1-5). People of integrity don't have to use oaths to strengthen their words. A simple yes or no carries all the weight that's needed (Matt. 5:33-37). More trouble is caused in families, neighborhoods, offices, and churches by gossip and lies and the people who keep them in circulation than by any other means. The Lord wants truth in our innermost being (Ps. 51:6), and He wants us to love the truth and protect it.
Our Lord Jesus gave us the best example! He is blameless in what He is (1 John 1:6), righteous in what He does (Ezra 9:15), and truthful in what He says (1 Sam. 15:29), and He wants His children to have the same characteristics.
And for sure, “He who does these things shall never be moved”!