Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Complete in Christ

Psalm 26

I. Believers Examine Themselves

A. David was interested in God’s evaluation and confidently sought to live as God required.A Psalm of David. Judge me, O LORD; for I have walked in mine integrity: I have trusted also in the LORD; therefore I shall not slide.” (Psalm 26:1)

B. Believers open themselves to God rather than relying on their own understanding and self-examination. “Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.” (Psalm 26:2) [reins hylk kilyah emotions] [heart bl labe inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding]

C. People lie to themselves—even believers; self-examination is a poor substitute for heavenly-examination. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

D. Only Christ ever met God’s standard; believers must seek that level of obedience even when they fail to reach it. “For thy lovingkindness is before mine eyes: and I have walked in thy truth.” (Psalm 26:3) “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6)

II. Believers Separate from Sin

A. Believers separate themselves from bad influences. “I have not sat with vain persons, neither will I go in with dissemblers.” (Psalm 26:4)

B. People who are happy in Jesus refuse to make common cause with wickedness. “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.” (Psalm 1:1)

C. A middle way is impossible. “He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.” (Proverb 13:20) “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Galatians 6:7)

D. Avoid sin in the Biblical way. “I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked.” (Psalm 26:5) “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.” (1 Corinthians 5:9-11)

E. Remember the pattern Jesus set. “And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners?” (Mark 2:15-16)

III. Holiness Must Be Active

A. The believer seeks holiness through conversion—living in the gospel. “I will wash mine hands in innocency: so will I compass thine altar, O LORD:” (Psalm 26:6) [compass bbo saw-bab turn around, change, transform]

B. Getting right with God leads to making a testimony for Him. “That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.” (Psalm 26:7)

C. The gospel cannot be silenced. “And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.” (Luke 19:40)

D. Believers love to be with God and His people. “LORD, I have loved the habitation of thy house, and the place where thine honour dwelleth.” (Psalm 26:8) “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple. For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock. And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.” (Psalm 27:4-6)

E. Believers do not want to be in the wrong place when the end arrives. “Gather not my soul with sinners, nor my life with bloody men: In whose hands is mischief, and their right hand is full of bribes.” (Psalm 26:9-10)

F. The faithful are always seeking more grace. “But as for me, I will walk in mine integrity: redeem me, and be merciful unto me.” (Psalm 26:11)

G. Christ came that new life might be possible. “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” (Titus 2:14)

H. The safe and stable place to live is at Jesus’ side. “My foot standeth in an even place: in the congregations will I bless the LORD.” (Psalm 26:12) “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4)

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