Psalm 15. God’s Bottom Line.

Today’s Lectio Divina: Excerpts from Psalm 15. (MsgB)

God, who gets invited to dinner at Your place? How do we get on Your guest list?

Walk straight, act right, tell the truth. Don’t hurt your friend, don’t blame your neighbor; despise the despicable. Keep your word even when it costs you, make an honest living, never take a bribe. You’ll never get blacklisted if you live like this.

There are times in life when all I really need is God’s bottom line.

Save the flowery poetry. Hold the deep theology. Stop the long-winded explanations. Just give me the bottom line.

King David makes it short and sweet here in Psalm 15. Kinda reminds me of the passage we mentioned last time in Micah 6, verse 8.

He has shown you, O man, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.

And don’t you love it when the task of following God in this complicated world can be reduced down to something so succinct and pithy that I can paste it up on my bathroom mirror? There it is.

Walk straight (not crooked).

Act right (not wrong).

Tell the truth (no lies).

Love and respect your friends & neighbors (no hitting).

Love love (hate evil).

Hold onto integrity (no dishonesty).

Six simple steps to becoming the godly man or woman God desires us to be. No fluff. No spin. No ‘yeah buts’ on the side. Clear concise direction that has proven itself faithful now for thousands of years. For King David, a man after God’s own heart, marching orders for his life. For us, all these centuries later, instructions for clear living in a very muddy world.

And ponder this.

King David and those in his day had to walk out these commands without the supreme benefit of knowing Jesus of Nazareth. Consider how fortunate you and I are that we live in a time after the first coming of Christ. Not only do we have these bottom-line words to live by but we also have the distinct advantage of having a personal Savior who has lived it out for us in flesh & blood!

So come on, men and women of God.

Let’s make a new commitment to this thing called following God.

With these short and sweet commands, combined with Jesus going before us, I’m guessing you and I can do this thing. And don’t forget. We have the indwelling power and empowering presence of the Holy Spirit to keep us on track if we grow tired or weary in doing good in this world gone bad.

Onward Christian soldiers. With God’s bottom line before us, let’s do this thing. For His name’s sake!

My prayer: Father, thank You that You’ve simplified the bottom line for me. As a simple man I need simple instructions. I choose to place these simple words in front of me and with Your help, I believe I can live it out. For Your name’s sake. Amen.

My questions to ponder: How have I overcomplicated the bottom line in following God in an overcomplicated world? What steps can I take to simplify my pursuit of God? Which simple commands found in Psalm 15 am I avoiding or downplaying? What would it look like for me to live out God’s bottom line today?

So what is God speaking to you today as you ponder the Psalms?

Over a 50-week period, you and I will take a deeper look at The Psalms: God’s Songbook of Prayers. In order to keep all the blog sessions organized, we suggest you bookmark our Contemplating the Psalms home page for ease of use. Keep in mind that one of the best ways to explore the on-going applications of this blog series is to walk alongside a biblically-based, Christ-centered spiritual director who is familiar with how to make material like this part of your overall spiritual formation in God. Many of our directors in our Sustainable Faith-Heartland network are available to companion you in your journey with Jesus. Click here for more info.

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