Psalm 15 (ESV)
1 O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent?
Who shall dwell on your holy hill?
2 He who walks blamelessly and does what is right
and speaks truth in his heart;
3 who does not slander with his tongue
and does no evil to his neighbor,
nor takes up a reproach against his friend;
4 in whose eyes a vile person is despised,
but who honors those who fear the Lord;
who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
5 who does not put out his money at interest
and does not take a bribe against the innocent.
He who does these things shall never be moved.
Jesus widely quotes from the Psalms throughout the Gospels. Hearing them, his auditors received piercing, familiar instruction on attaining perfection.
So, which of our sins most hinder obedience and deafen our Lord’s call to repent?
The challenge to walk blamelessly and do right is set forth in this Psalm.
In our speech, we are to relate the truth in thought, word and deed. Neither the evil action, nor the deceitful intention may be countenanced. We must not readily nor rashly give credence to accusations against men, however delicious gossip feels on our tongues. Nor are we to be a respecter of persons when it comes to misdeeds.
Additionally, we are to honor the godly and the innocent, and not take advantage of them as easy targets in a faithless age. Nor must we profit from the harm others bring on themselves.
‘Whoso doeth these things shall not be moved forever’: that is, he shall attain unto those greater things, wherein is great and unshaken stability. (St. Augustine’s Commentary on Psalm 15)
Where is a “great and unshaken stability” to be found? In no place save Heaven! There, redeemed humanity finds our true home.
This ascension of men made right in Christ comes through faith. Expect your faith to be refined by Christian teaching about what’s worth loving, aka the counsels of perfection.
Lord Jesus Christ, thou who hast taught us that only through learning to love do we find identity, help us to study the counsels of perfection, practice them daily, and come to so identify with thee that we may at the last enter into thy matchless glory. Amen.