The Lord is Our Refuge

Psalms 14:1 ESV

“The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’
They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds;
there is none who does good.”

Who is a fool? He is a con artist, a deceiver, a manipulator, and/or someone who is unwise, irrational, and reckless. He is self-indulgent and irresponsible. He is pleasure-driven and he commits evil deeds, as a matter of habit (practice). He is one who has no fear of God in his eyes, but lust is what fills his eyes. And he ignores the commands of God in order to do what his flesh dictates, regardless of who he hurts in the process, and with no conscience.

Now this says here that he says in his heart, “There is no God.” Interesting that it does not say with his mouth. It says with his heart, which is his inner man, his mind, his will, his heart, spirit, the core of who he is, his nature, his emotions, i.e. he says it in the substance of who he is as a person. And with his lips he could indeed be praising God and confessing him as Lord and as Savior yet while living in habitual and deliberate sin against God.

And another thing interesting about the fact that he says this in his heart is that the Scriptures teach that “the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” And they teach this: “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person.” [Luke 6:45; Matthew 15:17-20] And this includes women.

So, what this teaches us is that there is a direction connection between the words we speak, our attitudes, and our behaviors and what is stored up in our hearts. Many people act out what is stored in their hearts, and it can be anything from hatred, envy, bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness, lust, pride, and anger to rage, etc. And it comes out in all sorts of evil speaking and attitudes and actions. But it can be directed at specific people, too.

For many people like this can also be very friendly, helpful, charming, fun-loving, and funny, etc. and yet turn around and be mean and hateful and manipulative and spiteful towards those who they hate and are bitter against. So some people will see these “fools” as very nice people, while those who are the recipients of their outbursts of anger and their spiteful remarks and their lies and trickery, etc., see an entirely different person.

Psalms 14:2-6 ESV

“The Lord looks down from heaven on the children of man,
to see if there are any who understand,
who seek after God.

“They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt;
there is none who does good,
not even one.”

“Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers
who eat up my people as they eat bread
and do not call upon the Lord?

“There they are in great terror,
for God is with the generation of the righteous.
You would shame the plans of the poor,
but the Lord is his refuge.”

Now, in our flesh, when we are born into this world, we are born with sin natures, in the image of Adam. And all those who are still living by the flesh, according to their sin natures, and who have not put on Christ and his righteousness, via genuine faith in Jesus Christ, are those who do not seek after God, who do not understand, who have turned aside, who have become corrupt, and who are incapable of doing good as God defines good.

[Rom 3:9-26; Rom 5:12-19; 1 Co 15:21-22,42-49]

And this description above describes many people, at least here in America, who verbally profess Jesus Christ as Lord and as Savior of their lives. For, instead of denying self and dying with Christ to sin and living to God and to his righteousness (1 Peter 2:24), they feed on the flesh, they promote the flesh, they have not forsaken their sins, but they deliberately continue in them. So they live for sinful pleasures and not to please God with their lives.

Also, they take advantage of other people. They use and abuse them for their sinful pleasures without conscience and with no remorse or compassion. For example, husbands and wives (but mostly men) commit adultery against their spouses via lustful thoughts and/or pornographic images and/or while they gratify their own sexual appetites outside of marriage, such as in having extra-marital romantic or sexual affairs or light flirtations with people of the opposite or same sex, or via self-gratification.

And those who are living in sin, and who are doing evil, will often also oppose and mistreat those who are walking in fellowship with the Lord, and who are living righteously, though not necessarily in sinless perfection. And they will verbally and/or physically attack them, perhaps doing the blame shift thing, for they do not want to take personal responsibility for their own behaviors. They will be like Cain who murdered his brother because his brother’s deeds were righteous while Cain’s were evil (1 John 3:12).

Yet, they may make a pretense of calling upon the Lord, and even of being in fellowship with him, but while they still walk in darkness (1 John 1:5-9). And they may claim that they are listening to the counsel of the Lord, and that they are doing the will of God, while they clearly reject his counsel and commands (1 John 2:3-6). And they may claim that their sins are forgiven and that heaven is their eternal destiny while they keep on in habitual sin and not in obedience to God (1 John 3:4-10).

But the Lord is a refuge for those who call on him in truth, and who do what his word teaches that we, as followers of Jesus, must do. And I am not saying these are people who are living in sinless perfection but that they are walking in holiness and righteousness, and sin is not their practice. They are walking in obedience to the Lord Jesus, in practice. And the Lord is their strength and their refuge, especially when the evil ones persecute them.

Psalms 14:7 ESV

“Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!
When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people,
let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.”

Now, our Savior has come. He is Jesus Christ, our Messiah and Lord. He is the promised seed of Abraham, and it is only through faith in him that anyone is a child of God and is true Israel (Gal 3-4). But that faith is not an emotional experience or a one-time decision to receive Jesus Christ. Faith must be ongoing. We must be believing in Jesus presently when we die in order to have eternal life with God. And believing in Jesus is submitting to him as Lord, and it is following him in obedience, and it is dying daily to sin and to self. And it is surrender of our lives to him to do his will.

But I am also seeing another picture here, and that is of a plea to God for the salvation of our friends, our family members, people in our church congregations, pastors, elders, and even our government heads, that they would all turn their hearts away from living in sin to following Jesus Christ in obedience to his ways. And I also see this as a cry for revival, for so many people professing faith in Jesus Christ are living not much different from those not professing faith in Jesus. And the “church” of today here in America is on a giant moral and spiritual decline. So we need Jesus!

[Matt 7:21-23; Lu 9:23-26; Jn 14:23-24; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; Rom 12:1-2; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

Walking in The Light

An Original Work / November 16, 2011
Based off 1 John 1-2

When I lift up my voice, and
Sing praise unto God,
I will fellowship with my
Lord and Savior, King.
In Him there is no darkness.
He is in the light of truth.
If we walk in His light,
From sin He purifies.

If we repent of our sins,
He’ll forgive us now,
When we humble ourselves, and
Before Jesus bow.
The man who says, “I know Him,”
But does not obey His truth,
There is no truth in him.
In darkness still he’s found.

Do not love the world of sin,
For it is hell bound.
If you follow the world, you’ll
Not in Christ be found.
The world and its desires
Will not last; they’ll expire.
The one who does God’s will,
Receives eternal life.

See that what you have heard from
Christ remains in you.
Then, you’ll remain in Christ, and
In His Father, too.
This is what He promised us –
His eternal life with God.
So, continue in Him, and
You’ll receive a crown.

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