Google+ 11/27/12 Promises, Promises!

Psalm 37:28

 

For the Lord loves justice,
and he will never abandon the Godly.

He will keep them safe forever,
 B
ut the children of the wicked will die. 

 

Promises, Promises!  How many times a day do we hear someone promise us something that never happens?  Do we return the favor and make promises we will never be able to keep?  There was a point in the history of the United States where all business, retail or barter, was conducted the same way;  a handshake.  One person put their hand in another person's hand, shook it, and said, "I promise."  You could count on that promise.  It was always timely and just.  If there was a problem fulfilling the promise, conversation ensued and a new "promise" was formed by mutual consent of both parties.  There was no unilateral action on either parties' part.  As David writes this psalm, he is troubled by the prosperity of the unrighteous.  It seemed they were literally getting away with murder.  I must confess that I often look at our world the same way.  In my limited eyesight, it appears that people that are wicked, are being rewarded for their unrighteousness.  It can be discouraging, if I only look through my eyes and not the eyes of God.  This ill-fated sight can cause the righteous to quit, to give up, or to give in to Satan.  David knew this.  Please read this entire psalm in conjunction with this devotion.  Every line is important as we hear David's heart connect with God's.  Like David, my namesake, I want to be a "man after God's own heart."  David gives us great insight into what God has told him.  David proclaims that the Lord God is just and loves justice.  God will never leave His GODLY people.  What does it mean to be Godly?  I lobby that it is not what the world and most churches believe.  It is not about church attendance, although if you are Godly, you worship at your chosen local New Testament Church every Sunday.  It is not about how much Scripture you have memorized, although if you are Godly, you read Scripture every day.  It is not about how much you give, although if you are Godly, you give all that you have, just like that Biblically famous widow.  So what is it about?  I believe the definition of Godly is found in the statement I already quoted from God to David.  I believe it is about our hearts.  Being Godly means we have God's heart.  We understand, without words, the heart of God because we commune with Him daily.  We understand that God's heart has two sides, like we should have.  After all, He made us in His image.  God is love.  God loves everyone.  God lifts everyone up for His honor and glory.  Be careful now, because here it comes!  God also will let the wicked die.  There comes a point where we reject God so much, that we become eternally separated from Him.  God is a God of love that gave us free will.  This means we can choose to be separated from God in thought, word, and deed.  In that sense, our separation kills us.  It is not about the "Christian checklist" that many of us use to determine where someone stands with God.  Actions are a result of our heart for God.  We don't develop a heart for God by what we do. This is what the Bible means that we are saved by faith, not works.   Don't miss David's point.  Three lines of this one verse in Scripture show the protection and love that God has for the GODLY.  Yet, one line reminds us of the distaste our God has for wickedness and unrighteousness.  How's your heart for God today?  Are you communing with God daily so as to discern His heart and make it yours?  If not, you can because God and I don't want you to "die."  Love and worship Him today.  Promises come and go in the world and, unfortunately today, business is no longer done in most areas of the United States with a binding handshake.   God still does business with us with His word and His handshake.  Reach out your hand today and promise God to be "a man after His own heart."  God will look at you, and like He did to David, He will say, "I promise."  That's a promise we can all count on!