Living for God

Psalm 101 contains some timeless wisdom for those who want to live for God. Let’s take a look at these principles and see how we can put them into practice in our lives.

Verse 1 says, “I will sing of your love and justice; to you, Lord, I will sing praise.” Here the Psalmist promises to sing, first to others about the Lord’s love and justice. God loves us enough to create us for his pleasure. He loves us enough to send his Son Jesus to die for us. Surely we have something to sing about when it comes to God’s love! Then he says he will sing about the Lord’s justice. Justice is a much-discussed topic these days. Some talk a lot about justice, but their actions betray that what they really want is vengeance. Our justice will always be flawed. Even with the best intentions, justice is not always perfectly administered by imperfect humans. We must constantly strive for justice, but remember that the Lord will eventually mete out justice that is pure and true.

The second part of the verse promises to sing praise to the Lord. In addition to singing to others about the Lord’s goodness, we must also sing to the Lord himself. Our singing is one of the many ways that we worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. We lift our voices together when we meet on Sunday morning. However, our praise is not limited to congregational singing. Through Jesus, God has put a song in the heart of every Christian, and it is fitting and proper to praise God for our salvation every single day.

Verse 2 lets us know that our singing must be backed up by right actions—“I will be careful to lead a blameless life—when will you come to me? I will conduct the affairs of my house with a blameless heart.” It is terribly hypocritical to sing the Lord’s praises on Sunday and then live the rest of the week as if you never even heard of the Lord! Careless living is a poor witness to others and an unacceptable offering to the Lord. While we can never attain perfection, Christians must strive to live a life that is holy and pleasing to God. The second part of the verse expresses a deep desire for God’s presence. This desire is a logical companion to one’s pursuit of holy living. We should seek God’s presence with every waking moment. The last part of the verse points out the important impact your godly living has on the members of your household. Don’t just do the right thing for your own benefit. Do it for the benefit of those you love most.

Verse 3 says, “I will not look with approval on anything that is vile. I hate what faithless people do; I will have no part in it.” I recently voted (early) to express my disapproval of abortion. I recently wrote a newspaper column and preached a sermon expounding on the evil of sexual immorality. I hate it when the Lord’s name is used as a swear word. I stand opposed to gambling in every form. These are just a few of the evils we must stand against. If we don’t take a stand against evil, we cannot rightly take a stand for what is good. Romans 12:9 is a companion verse—“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.”

These timeless principles for godly living need to become more and more ingrained in our lives. Let’s be diligent as we continually strive to live for him.

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