Sermon

The Commitments of the Godly Man

Michael Beck Michael Beck

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In Psalm 101, David declares his commitments as a godly man.

1. I WILL Sing of Mercy and Judgment

I WILL sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O LORD, will I sing. (Psalm 101:1)

Our “song” reflects our experience in life.

And David spake unto the LORD the words of this song in the day that the LORD had delivered him out of the hand of all his enemies, and out of the hand of Saul (2 Samuel 22:1)

The songs of the world reflect on the things that men (and devils) are involved in.
They do not “consider” what God is doing.

Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow strong drink; that continue until night, till wine inflame them! And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe, and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the LORD, neither consider the operation of his hands. (Isaiah 5:11,12)

As God works in our life He “changes our tune.”

He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD. (Psalm 40:2,3)

When David fell he became the “song of the drunkards.”

They that sit in the gate speak against me; and I was the song of the drunkards. (Psalm 69:12)

As a godly man, David would not listen to the “song of fools.” But he was willing to hear God’s rebuke to him.

It is better to hear the rebuke of the wise, than for a man to hear the song of fools. (Ecclesiastes 7:5)

David’s songs expressed God’s full dealing with him.

I will sing of mercy and judgment… (Psalm 101:1)

2. I WILL Behave Myself Wisely in a Perfect Way

I WILL behave myself wisely in a perfect way. O when wilt thou come unto me?… (Psalm 101:2a)

perfect > Hebrew – tamiym > without blemish

God made known to David that the intimacy any man has with Him depends on their commitment to an unblemished walk.

Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.
Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight.
I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD. (Ps. 101:5-8)

We cannot expect God to draw near to us while our hands cling to sin and our heart holds on to “idols.”

Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. (James 4:8)

3. I WILL Walk Within My House with a Perfect Heart

I WILL walk within my house with a perfect heart. (Psalm 101:2b)

perfect > Hebrew – tom > integrity, completeness

God testified that David walked in integrity of heart.

And if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart… (1 Kings 9:4)

David’s testimony was marred by one glaring failure.

Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from any thing that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite. (1 Kings 15:5)

David was a success on the battlefield and in the house of worship. His failure came on the “home front.”

And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. (2 Samuel 11:2)

It is in the “secret” of our homes that our integrity is proven.

For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. (2 Samuel 12:12)

And it came to pass, as she spake to Joseph day by day, that he hearkened not unto her, to lie by her, or to be with her.
And it came to pass about this time, that Joseph went into the house to do his business; and there was none of the men of the house there within. And she caught him by his garment, saying, Lie with me: and he left his garment in her hand, and fled, and got him out. (Genesis 39:10-12)

David’s children inherited the good and bad of his walk.

The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him. (Proverbs 20:7)

4. I WILL Set No Wicked Thing Before My Eyes

I WILL set no wicked thing before mine eyes… (Psalm 101:3)

Satan set David up to fall. David’s fall with Bathsheba was not premeditated. He “fell” into sin.
Sin that is premeditated is that which we make provision for.

But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. (Romans 13:14)

provision > Greek – pronoia > the forethought involved in making provision for something

Purposefully setting up an opportunity for disobedience and unfaithfulness to God indicates that we are not keeping covenant with God.

Cursed be the man that maketh any graven or molten image, an abomination unto the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and putteth it in a secret place. And all the people shall answer and say, Amen. (Deuteronomy 27:15)

God has nothing to say (except, “repent”) to those who permit wicked things to dwell in their homes, in their minds, or before their eyes.

Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.
And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them? (Ezekiel 14:1-3)

5. I HATE the Work of Them that Turn Aside

I HATE the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. (Psalm 101:3b)

David refused to respect those who celebrated their independence from God (i.e., the proud) or those traveling on a wicked path.

Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. (Ps. 40:4)

The proud glory in the creative things they can do and say as they live their “own” lives apart from God’s yoke.

The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things:
Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us? (Psalm 12:3,4)

The “feet” of the righteous can begin to slip off God’s path when they envy what the wicked can do.

Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart.
But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped.
For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. (Psalm 73:1-3)

The “way of the wicked” can seduce the righteous.

The righteous is more excellent than his neighbour: but the way of the wicked seduceth them. (Proverbs 12:26)

God hates the way of the wicked because of the “works of iniquity” committed while one is on it.

The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness. (Pr. 15:9)

Those that “fear the Lord” hate the “evil way.”

The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate. (Pr. 8:13)

If we don’t hate the works of those that turn aside, we’ll end up pursuing a similar path of independence from God.

Let not thine heart envy sinners: but be thou in the fear of the LORD all the day long. (Proverbs 23:17)

6. I WILL Not Know a Wicked Person

A froward heart shall depart from me: I WILL not know a wicked person. (Psalm 101:4)

The ungodly person wants no limits placed on who or what they can know.
The godly person is content not to see or know what God wisely chooses to leave unknown to them.

LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me.
Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child. (Psalm 131:1,2)

We can live in the midst of a whole generation that have “lifted up” eyes.

There is a generation, O how lofty are their eyes! and their eyelids are lifted up. (Proverbs 30:13)

God hates “lifted up eyes.”

These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look… (Proverbs 6:16,17)

proud > Hebrew – ruwm > raised, lifted up look > Hebrew – ayin > eye

It is sin to look at or seek to discover that which the Spirit of God calls us to be ignorant of.

An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin. (Proverbs 21:4)

God wants us to have an abundant and pure knowledge only of what is good.

…But yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil. (Romans 16:19)

simple > Greek – akeraios > unmixed, without a mixture of evil

Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. (Matthew 5:8)


Michael Beck is a pastor in New York City and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.