Psalm 1:1 KJV 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.
Here we have the foundation of true happiness. This is not happiness dependent on things going our way but is dependent upon obedience to God. In verse one we are told what NOT to do and in verse two we are told what to do. We will look at the “what not to do” side first.
- do not ask for advice from the wicked
- do not stand or go to the places sinners go
- do not sit or be comfortable in the ways of scoffers
This goes from walking to standing to sitting. That is from being casual to being friendly to being intimate. There are the wicked, the sinner, and the scoffer. We will look at all three.
Ungodliness does not always appear as some atrocity that is openly noticeable.
Mark 7:6 KJV He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. 7 Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
The Pharisees and scribes, among others, were opposed to Jesus because His words and actions continually challenged them. They believed they were in right standing with God through their works. Jesus keeps telling them they can not earn being right with God, that is self-righteousness. The Jewish leaders had created many laws and rules that had nothing to do with the laws of God. Jesus, being God in flesh, did not obey their laws or traditions (Mark 7:1-4)
The Pharisees ask Jesus a question:
Mark 7:5 KJV Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands?
Mark 7:6-9 Jesus tells them, on the outside you look and sound pious but on the inside you are far from God. Instead of living and teaching God’s commands, you live and teach the commands of men. In verses Mark 7:8-9, we are told how;
They neglect God’s commands by making their traditions priority. This leads to pushing aside God’s commands in order to keep their traditions. In Mark 7:10-13; we are told why;
Jesus reveals the religious use their traditions for their own gain. What they present as laws are not true obedience to God. So, obedience to the traditions of men causes disobedience to God’s word.
What does this tell us? That there are those who appear morally upright and good. Their life has the appearance of godliness on the outside. But there is no fooling Jesus, God, because He sees our heart which means He sees hypocrisy and uncleanliness in the heart.
However, for us it is not always easy to discern between true and fake believers. The goal is to be aware from whom you ask advice and when given advice, go to the word of God and see if there is agreement.
Why is this important? Because these are not just words to me. I know from experience to walk with the wicked has no choice but to lead to disappointment and darkness. Why, because though they appear to be good and right they are not. They are without faith in God, without joy, and their expectations come to nothing (Proverbs 10:28). They are only externally religious. The wicked hold thoughts of pride in their minds and hide rebellion toward God in their heart.
John 14:15 KJV If ye love me, keep my commandments…. 23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. 24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.
The wicked do not obey the word of God, Christ, instead they obey their own rebellious heart and their ways. The only question to ask would be, who are you accepting council from? Is your obedience to God, truly?
Proverbs 15:9 KJV The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the Lord: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.
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