"10 COMMANDMENTS OF PEACE"
The peace that can only come from the Prince of Peace, the Lord Jesus Christ, will be evident in the life of the child of God that obeys these commands from the Lord found in this most enlightening and popular Psalm of David.
The first comes with the opening verse: "Fret not thyself because of evildoers..." The Lord is giving us a direct injunction, and imperative order, to stop being uneasy, stop letting yourself be vexed, wore out, agitated, irritated and provoked because of those who are committing evil, wicked acts in our presence. Quit letting them control your attitude, your actions, and your thinking processes thereby surrendering your testimony, your ministry and your joy in the Lord!
The second immediately follows in verse 1: "Neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity." "Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?"(Prov 27:4) "Love envies not" (I Corinthians 13:4) The child of God must not commit the sin of envy! However, the love of Christ for the evildoer will bring us to the place where we are able to minister to them, praying for them and witnessing to them.Yes, allowing the Lord to love the evildoer through us as we pray for their souls, obeying the Lordís command to "love our enemies" and thereby revealing the Spirit of Christ which dwells within us! The Lord then reveals the wretched plight of the wicked in verse 2 likening them to the grass that is cut down, and the herb that withers. The picture painted of the evildoers is one of worthless, short lives, cut down, terminated, brought to a violent end, succumbing to the heat of an endless torment in hell! This view of the lot of the wicked should bring us to an attitude of praise because the Lord gives us much to praise Him for as He has bought for us eternal life in His presence, and has given us lives here in this present world that are valuable to Him as we serve the King of Kings! This is His answer to those of us who find ourselves focusing on the wrong things, fretting, envying, and not fixing our eyes on Him Who alone is worthy! One preacher has rightly proclaimed: "A glance at Him will certainly save us, but only a prolonged gaze upon Jesus can sanctify us." Turning our eyes upon Him and the Cross will align our viewpoint, giving us compassion for the lost instead of envying them.
The third commandment of peace is found in verse 3: "Trust in the Lord..." totally rely on Him for the results, the outcome of our obedience to Him, yes "Lean not to our own understanding" which is what gets us into fretting and envying the wicked, but "In all our ways acknowlede Him and He shall direct our paths."
Number four: "Do good..." Practice the positive actions of doing right, accomplishing good things for the glory of God! This simple two word command is the antidote for wrong attitudes and actions! Doing good, getting involved in ministry to those in need, whether physically or spiritually.
The fifth is the favorite verse of many who faithfully serve the Lord: "Delight thyself also in the Lord, and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart." Making the Lord Himself the focus of your affection, the central figure of your life, the one with whom you would rather spend time with, more than any other person on earth, yes, rejoicing in Him and who He is, and what He has done and what He will do, feasting the eyes of your soul on Him who is altogether lovely, being consumed with His great love, this is Godís definition of delight! The result of this type of heart surrendering delight for the Lord and His Kingdom will most undoubtedly bring you "the desires of thine heart" because your desires will be the Lordís desires, and His desires will be yourís! This is in essence how we are able to walk in His will knowing by experiencing the peace of God which passes all understanding!
"Commit thy way unto the Lord" is the sixth commandment of peace. Putting Him in charge of your present and future decisions, allowing Him to guide and direct thereby taking the responsibility from your shoulders and casting your cares upon Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we can ask or think! The latter part of this command in verse 7 underlines whose responsibility it is to "bring it to pass." We are left to minister to Him and those He leads us to minister to, as He takes all of our cares and concerns giving us the promise that He ia able to bring about His desired result.
The seventh commandment is my favorite: "Rest in the Lord" The most popular Psalm now comes to mind as we approach the topic of rest. "He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters, He restoreth my soul..." Psalm 23 gives to the soul a freedom from anxiety, irritation, and unrest. Instead the soothing scene of resting in the Lord in the lush green grass along a cool, refreshing river of the "water of life" comes to mind. The Lord wants his sheep to comfortably rest in His perfect peace by staying our minds upon Him!
Number eight is the often repeated commandment "wait patiently for Him." Although this seems to be the most difficult thing to do, many times it is the only thing to do! If we have no certain direction from the Lord it is necessary that we wait on Him until He reveals to us His will in the matter we are seeking. Psalm 27:14 emphasized this most necessary principle: "Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say on the Lord." The Lord strengthens us during the time of waiting, giving us what we need to endure while we wait on His perfect will.
The ninth commandment of peace calls for us to "Cease from anger." Anger is the natural manís way of expressing contempt for the one who brings about "wicked devices" verse7. However, we are commanded to stop being angry, and "forsake wrath" putting away from us the abiding settled attitude which will produce bitterness in our soul! Ephesians 4:31,32 gives a similar commandment and also includes the cure for this soul-damning practice: "Let all bitterness and wrath, and anger, and clamour and evil speaking be put away from you with all malice. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christís sake hath forgiven you."
The tenth and final commandment of peace: "Fret not thyself in any wise to do evil." verse 8 Stop allowing your attitude to be wore down to the point that you yourself sin against God by performing ungodly actions of sin. This is the natural progression of sin. If we allow our mind to fret, become uneasy, contemplating the conduct of the wicked, becoming irritated with their seemingly unchecked way of life, we will of necessity fall into their same wretched paths! This last commandment is followed by the promise: "those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth" verse 9. Prosperity and blessing in this life will follow the one who obeys the "Ten Commandments of Peace."
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