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What kind of man may dwell with God?

September 11th, 2011 Categories: enjoying..., pondering... 2 comments

This past week, the Holy Word for Morning Revival was on the subject of “The God-man Who Satisfies God’s Desire and Fulfills His Good Pleasure”. We were looking at Psalms 15 and 16, which begin with the following question:

O Jehovah, who may sojourn in Your tent? Who may dwell on Your holy mountain?

David, the writer of this Psalm, goes on to give an answer to his question.

He who walks in integrity
And does righteousness
And speaks truth from his heart.
He does not slander with his tongue;
He does not do evil to his friend,
Nor does he take up a reproach against his neighbor.
In his eyes a reprobate is despised,
But he honors those who fear Jehovah.
Should he swear to his harm,
He does not change.
He does not lend his money on interest,
Nor accept a bribe against the innocent.
He who does these things will not be shaken forever.

What do you think? Is this a good answer?

A “Good” Answer

Well, it certainly is a “good” answer, but therein lies the problem. We all, David included, often have the concept that the man of good can dwell with God, but that the the man of evil cannot. Our two lines are good and evil.

As an illustration, this afternoon we visited some homes to introduce people in our neighbourhood to the radio broadcast of the Life-study of the Bible, and one lady, who said she was an unbeliever, asked this question:

“If God is up there, why are there so many evil people down here?”

Unfortunately, she did not have time to listen to an answer. However, this shows that we all, whether believers or unbelievers, have this concept of good versus evil.

It is no wonder therefore that when asked, “What kind of man may dwell with God for His heart’s desire and good pleasure?” we are likely to give an answer which is similar to David’s: “A man who is good, righteous, honest, and full of integrity.”

But, and it is a big but…

The Impossibility of Being “Good”

David thought that the one who is perfect according to the law is the one who can dwell with God. However, check your experience. Are you able to keep the law?

The answer is “No!” Not one of us is able to be perfect according to the law. Here are a few examples from the Bible:

We are no different. There is not one of us who is perfect according to the law. So it is a good thing that a “good” person was not the kind of person God that is looking for…

God’s Answer

God does not want a good man or an evil man. God rejects both the good man and the evil man because both good and evil are of the same source and same nature. They are of the same line and will arrive at the same end. What then does God want?

Actually, we cannot say that Psalm 15 is completely wrong. However, not only is it impossible for us to match the requirements in Psalm 15, but even these requirements are not complete.

But in Psalm 16, we see God’s answer to David’s question; we see the man that God wants. This Psalm unveils the only One who is perfect according to the law – Jesus Christ – One who is not merely a good man, but a God-man.

There is just so much packed into Psalm 16, which unveil to us this wonderful Person. I won’t go into it now, but I can refer you to ministrybooks.org where you can read Life-study of Psalms (Chapters 6 and 7).

So, can WE satisfy God’s desire and fulfil His good pleasure?

The answer is “Yes!”

But it is not a matter of being good or evil, and it is not a matter of our effort to keep the law. We fail anyway! Instead, it is everything to do with this wonderful Person, our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the One who satisfies God’s heart’s desire and fulfils His good pleasure. And because He is now the life-giving Spirit, we can be one spirit with Him.

This means that the more we drop our concepts, turn our hearts to the Lord, pay attention to our spirit and spend time in His word, the more we are filled with Christ, and the more Christ in us satisfies God’s desire and fulfils His good pleasure, and together we dwell in the presence of God with fullness of joy, enjoying His pleasures forever. So it’s not about my self-effort, but it is Christ in me, the hope of glory. Hallelujah!

You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Well, this is a much longer post than I was planning to make… and unfortunately that seems to be the case more and more. Well done for reading this far :) I will make some attempt (but no promises!) to keep the next few down to a smaller word count.

But before I sign off, I would also like to refer you to the Truth Questions website and the latest question, Is Man Good or Evil?. You can read it online and also download and print it as a gospel tract to give to other people. The answer to this question gives an explanation of why man is actually both good and evil, and leads us to see God’s solution to the problem of evil in our nature. (Hint: It is quite similar to what you have just read above. But go and read it anyway :))



  1. Rebekah
    September 25th, 2011 at 21:57 | #1

    Awesome sharing, this should be the next gospel tract!! :D

  2. semyl
    September 26th, 2011 at 00:00 | #2

    @Rebekah Thanks :) Actually, it is already quite similar to the latest truth question, Is Man Good or Evil?

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