What does it mean to “never be shaken?” I pondered that thought after I read the last part of the last verse in Psalm 15: “He who does these things will never be shaken (NASB).” I can honestly say that I don’t know if I can go through life on this earth without being shaken. But the last verse also challenges me with: “He who does these things…”
Psalm 15 opens with a question: “LORD, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill (NASB)?” It then lists the characteristics of someone who may “abide” and “dwell.” When I look at the list, a lot of it centers on how we interact with others; how we treat them. It is a matter of putting God first; putting the needs of others above yourself.
From acting with integrity and righteousness (verse 2); not slandering or doing evil to others (3); despising those who do evil, but honoring those “who fear the Lord (4); and not charging interest or taking “a bribe against the innocent (5).” When I look at all of these instructions, I see that a lot of them relate to how we interact with others. Not doing them can be the source of conflict with others that can shake us.
It is a tall order to do all the things that Pslam 15 commands. As a citizen of the Kingdom of God, as a child of God, we are expected to pursue a life that reflects our citizenship — the family of God. It is as verse 4 tells us: “He swears to his own hurt and does not change.” We do not let the world sway us. We adhere to God’s word.
Yet I am human and at times my human nature causes me to make mistakes; to place myself above others. That is the point. I cannot do it alone. I need God to help me; his Spirit to guide me; His son Jesus to offer me forgiveness so I may “abide in Your tabernacle… dwell in Your holy hill (1).”
© 2021 CGThelen
You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever. – Psalm 16:11
Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. – Galatians 5:19-21