Date: Tuesday, September 24
Scripture: Psalm 5
Verse: For you are not a God who delights in wickedness; evil will not sojourn with you. (Psalm 5:4)
We teach our children to be careful about those with whom they choose to associate – “Birds of a feather…” and all that. We know we are sometimes judged, rightly or wrongly, by the company we keep. We also know what a strong influence our peers can have upon us – as children, youth, and just as strongly in adulthood. The psalmist draws on this wisdom to teach us something about God, and his relationship with evil.
From time to time I will hear someone talk about an evil in our world as sent by God to teach us something, or to punish some sin. Wars, storms, earthquakes, plagues, poverty – all have been accused of being tools God has used to make a point – and usually not a very clear one at that. The psalmist tells us this is not the case. God doesn’t keep company with evil. The second half of verse four “evil will not sojourn with you,” is rendered in the Common English Bible this way, “evil doesn’t live with you.” Or, as I might say it, “You don’t hang out with evil.” God is good, and doesn’t associate with evil.
As the people of God, we are not to hang out with evil either. To quote another cliche, the end does not justify the means. We cannot use evil practices to bring about what we see as God’s desired outcomes. We must be people who, like God, refuse to associate with evil. Because the company we keep can influence us deeply, we need to stay away from evil and close to God.
Prayer: Holy Spirit come to keep my in close company with you, and far from evil. Amen.
Action: Chat with your discipleship group or a close friend about this concept of God not using evil means to bring about his will. What are the implications of that for our view of God? and our view of ourselves?
Respond: When have you been influenced positively by the people you hang out with? Answer by clicking “Leave a Comment” below.
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