This devotional comes from “Solid Joys,” the Android and iOS app from Desiring God that features daily devotions by John Piper.
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For Thy name’s sake, O Lord, Pardon my iniquity, for it is great. Who is the man who fears the Lord? He will instruct him in the way he should choose. (Psalm 25:11–12)
All the forgiveness and help of God are gracious and unmerited. But they are not all unconditional.
Our election and our regeneration are unconditional but subsequent blessings like ongoing forgiveness and guidance and help in trouble are conditional on our covenant-keeping.
This does not mean we lose security or assurance, for God has pledged himself to complete the work he began in the elect (Philippians 1:6). He is at work within us to will and to do his good pleasure (Philippians 2:12–13). He works in us what is pleasing in his sight (Hebrews 13:21). He fulfills the conditions of the covenant through us (Ezekiel 36:27). Our security is as secure as God is faithful.
When we read Psalm 25 carefully, we see that there are conditions we meet in order to receive God’s guidance (v. 9), God’s lovingkindness (v.10), God’s instruction (v. 12), and God’s protection (v.20). But all this condition-keeping is done by “sinners” (vv. 8, 11). And notice that these covenant-keeping sinners who receive God’s guidance and protection are being preserved by their “integrity and uprightness” (v. 21).
In other words, even though we sin every day in various ways there is a profound difference between sinners who keep God’s covenant (v. 10) and those who don’t. I urge you to search your heart in the light of this Psalm to know if you “wait for the Lord” (v. 21) and “take refuge in him” (v. 20) and “fear” him (v. 12) and are “humble” before him (v. 9) and “keep his covenant” (v. 10). These are the sinners whom God will guide and protect.
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I pictured this devotional in this image:
“Once upon a time, there were servants who worked for a terrible and unmerciful master. They cried for help every day in their hard labors. One day, the king of the land the servants worked in came and paid for the freedom of the servants. The servants were very touched with the king’s deed and they decided to devote themselves to the service of the king, as the king himself had made a covenant with them to serve him faithfully for a certain time.
As the time went by, the servants got to know about the king more deeply. But, some of them did not fear him. The others did not do their job correctly. Some just worked in vain. Some compared the labor to their enslavement before. But there was a group of servants who really devoted themselves to the service despite the hardships and obstacles they found and grew very close to the king.
After the certain time was even, the king raised the faithful servants to become the caretakers of his household, while the other servants who had grumbled did not receive anything and wandered and wept somewhere else in their sadness and misery, for they did not seek refuge in the king.”
God is teaching us to seek refuge in Him, fear Him, count on Him and keep His covenant. He even invites us to know Him better!
May Lord Jesus blesses you!