Psalms 34:8-10 NIV
“Taste and see that the Lord is good;
blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.
Fear the Lord, you his holy people,
for those who fear him lack nothing.
The lions may grow weak and hungry,
but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.”
This is not a call to experiment with God-Jesus Christ, but this is a call to discern, to perceive, and to recognize and acknowledge his goodness – that he is faithful, trustworthy, merciful, kind, gracious, holy, and righteous, that he is a God of truth, and that what he says he will do, he will do.
We are blessed (benefitted, shown favor) who take refuge (sanctuary) in him. And the way we take refuge in him is by God’s grace (favor) being shown to us, through God-persuaded faith in Jesus Christ. By faith we die with Christ to sin and we are raised with Christ to new lives in him.
And these new lives are not like our old lives. For, by faith in Jesus Christ we are delivered from slavery to sin so that we can now live to the glory of God as bond-servants of his righteousness by God’s Spirit who now lives within us. So now we walk, not according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
Now we are in intimate relationship with God-Jesus Christ. Now he lives within us and we are his temple. And now our lives are under His control and no longer under the control of Satan and the flesh. Now, in the power of God’s Spirit, we can live holy lives, pleasing to God.
Now that we are in Christ Jesus, by faith in him, because of God’s grace to us, we are to walk in him in the fear of the Lord. We are to show him honor, reverence, and respect, and we are to listen to him and obey him and do what he commands us to do.
We are to live for the Lord as his holy people, set apart (unlike, different) from the world because we are now being conformed to Christ’s likeness. We are to no longer be conformed to the ways of this sinful world, but we are to be transformed in heart and mind away from sin to living for our Lord.
When we choose the Lord and his ways, and we walk in holiness and purity of devotion to him, and we no longer are living to please our flesh, but our desire is for the Lord, to please him in all that we do, we will not lack in any good thing that we need, that is for our good, for God will provide for us.
[Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 2:3-6; Ac 26:18; Jn 14:23-24]
Psalms 34:11-14 NIV
“Come, my children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
Whoever of you loves life
and desires to see many good days,
keep your tongue from evil
and your lips from telling lies.
Turn from evil and do good;
seek peace and pursue it.”
When we believe in Jesus Christ to be our Lord and Savior, we die with Christ to sin that we might live to Christ and to his righteousness. For, Jesus died to deliver us out of our slavery to sin so that we might now become slaves to God and to his righteousness (Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:17-24).
Thus, we are to no longer live under the control of sin and Satan as we did before we believed in Jesus. Now we are to put out of our lives anything that is of the flesh and of sin, and we are to even cut out of our lives anything that might be leading us into sin or hindering our walks of faith.
So, anything that God calls sin must be put out of our lives, and in place of the sin we must put on what is of God and of his righteousness.
So, we are to rid our lives of lies and we are to speak truthfully to others. We are not to sin in our anger. Instead of stealing, we are to work and then to be generous in giving to others as they have need. Instead of unwholesome talk, we are to say words of edification and exhortation.
We are to “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Eph 4:31-32).
And we are to walk by the Spirit so that we don’t gratify the desires of the flesh, for the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. So, we are not to live in sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, selfish ambition, and the like, or we will not have eternal life with God (Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; 1 Co 6:9-10; Eph 4:17-32).
So, we are to set our minds on things above, not on earthly things, for we died, and our lives are now hidden with Christ in God (Col 3:2-3).
Psalms 34:15-18 NIV
“The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
and his ears are attentive to their cry;
but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil,
to blot out their name from the earth.
“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them;
he delivers them from all their troubles.
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
Some people have this idea that belief in Jesus Christ requires no action and no change of behavior on their part, that they do nothing, and that God does it all.
While it is true that it is only by God’s grace, and because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for our sins, and it is only because of God drawing us to Christ that any of us can be saved from our sins and have eternal life with God, it is not true that God requires nothing of us who believe in him.
You would have to wipe out over half of the New Testament and over half of the teachings of Paul, too, to be able to pull off that scenario. For, Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live with him to his righteousness.
So, if you have this idea that you can continue living in sin, and that you can even be engaged in deliberate and premeditated habitual sin, and that if you feel guilty you can just claim who you are in Christ, then think again. Read the New Testament books word by word.
If we continue living in sin deliberately and habitually, as a matter of practice, we will die in our sins. We won’t have eternal life with God. And while we still live on this earth, we won’t have the blessings of God in our lives, either.
So, if you want to be in relationship with Jesus Christ, have your sins forgiven, be on your way to heaven, and have the Lord hearing your prayers and giving you what you need for this life, then you need to learn what it means to walk in the fear of the Lord, for that is required.
[Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; 1 Co 6:9-10; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; 2 Co 5:10]
Seek the Lord
An Original Work / July 20, 2012
Based off Isaiah 55
“Come to Me all you who thirst; come to waters.
Listen to Me, and eat what’s good today,
And your soul will delight in richest of fare.
Give ear to Me, and you will live.
I have made an eternal covenant with you.
Wash in the blood of the Lamb.”
Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him.
Let the wicked forsake his way, in truth.
Let him turn to the Lord, and he will receive mercy.
Freely, God pardons him.
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,”
declares the Lord, our God.
“My word that goes out of My mouth is truthful.
It will not return to Me unfulfilled.
My word will accomplish all that I desire,
And achieve the goal I intend.
You will go in joy, and be led forth in peace.
The mountains will burst into song… before you,
And all of the trees clap their hands.”