Journal Ps 53-55 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, doing abominable iniquity; there is none who does good.
God looks down from heaven on the children of man to see if there are any who understands, who seek after God. They have all fallen away; together they have become corrupt.
There is none who does good, not even one.” Ps 53:1-3
Observation: I think that this is one of those references where I am inclined to apply this to someone else, and say, “Not me…”
And yet, it is my picture in the footnotes.
Daily grace, not one-time grace, is needed. Another reason to remember and preach the Gospel to myself.
Analysis: Why do certain sections of Scripture stand out to me and others don’t?
The right and only answer: Because of the Holy Spirit. Still, but why?
The above reference isn’t particularly encouraging; it doesn’t cause my soul to raise its voice in praise; it doesn’t particularly provide armament to champion a certain preaching point.
Sometimes I just don’t know. Today, this “I don’t know” has captured my attention.
I have used the picture of “the Man in the Mirror” to illustrate whom to preach the Gospel to daily. It does no good to think, “I am in; my heaven ticket is punched, let me go after the poor, wretched creatures who don’t know Jesus…,” without remembering that I can forget so easily. After all, I can revert to the “fool” in an eyeblink. This Ps 53 reference is part of the Gospel.
Now another picture comes to mind: The Window. Sort of related to the Mirror, the Window shows me about the folks Jesus died for; what their hearts are like; how they conduct themselves…but in the detail of their soul.
This is how I tend to react: in judgement and condemnation. Not that I don’t tend to know how wrong my thoughts are, but I sway to those thoughts anyway. It takes effort to redirect judgmental thoughts—it goes back to the Saturday 032121 post thinking as if I was God (Ps 50:21).
If I stay objective with the Scriptures, then I understand that the “Fool” referenced in Ps 53 can be me. By understanding this, then I continue to understand why I need the Grace available from the Atonement.
I was confronted this afternoon, by my boss, and then when I tried to unload my burden to my wife, I was confronted again. Something minor, perhaps in one view, but it went to a view that my complaint was indicative of an arrogant attitude of resisting correction. I can’t argue with the “resisting correction” part but the arrogance observation got to me.
It is now about 2 hours since that living room discussion and my heart is bouncing all around. A double minded man is unstable. I would like to think that I am stable here and there, but perhaps not in others. It occurs to me I am dipping my toe into the pool of foolishness.
I don’t want to be a fool. I know I need to release this to Jesus if I am puzzled while, in parallel, examining myself.
Walking worthy of the Gospel is not always an easy road.
Prayer: Lord, I am crushed in spirit. What is the difference in walking in confidence and walking in arrogance?
Please bring me an answer and peace.