Eyes That See

“I Once Was Blind”

Doers of the Word?

Psalm 1

“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!  But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.  He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers.

The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away.  Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.  For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the wicked will perish.”

James 1:22 – “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.”

According to Blaise Pascal, by way of John Piper’s “Desiring God,” all men seek their own happiness.  He does not divide men into two categories the way that Psalm 1 does.  Therefore, both wicked men and righteous men seek their own happiness.  The difference is found in the means to the end; the end being their own happiness.

So how are the means of the righteous and the means of the wicked different as they seek their own happiness?  “[The righteous man’s] delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.”

The difference in whether your way will perish or prosper is whether or not you delight in the Lord and His law and meditate on it day and night.  By that measure I am wicked far more often than I am righteous.

I am studying “Desiring God” with my good friend and hero Travis Cardwell, and Piper’s thoughts in his book are obvious and Biblically solid.  But, they are difficult to put into practice.  I see the magnificence of God everywhere in this world.  I see the unthinkable mercy that God showed to me even though I turned my back on Him for years and sought to live my life without Him.  I see that just as hell is overwhelmingly terrible, God is infinitely glorious because He gave me a way to avoid hell- even though hell is the only thing I deserve from Him.

And I love Him when I am thinking about Him and when I do meditate on Him, His law, His creations, and all of His blessings.  Those are times when “desiring God” comes easily. 

And yet how quickly my simple mind forgets.  And how my simple heart seeks satisfaction in the simple pleasures of His creations and His gifts, all the while ignoring the infinite blessings, prosperity, and pleasures of the Giver.  And so my question is, “How do I put Piper’s theories into practice all the time, rather than only when it comes easily?”

The answer, I believe, is found by combining Psalm 1 with James 1:22.  My delight must be in the law of the Lord.  And I must meditate in it day and night.  And, I must be a doer of the word, and not merely a hearer who deludes myself.

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August 25, 2007 - Posted by | Bible, Doers of the Word, Faith, God, Heart, James, Psalm 1, Religion, righteousness

4 Comments »

  1. i LOVE Desiring God, it changed my life!

    Comment by Leslie | August 25, 2007 | Reply

  2. I’m diggin the page. You would pick orange wouldn’t you? That still your favorite color?

    Comment by Mindy | August 25, 2007 | Reply

  3. Welcome to the blogosphere, Big Ham.

    But shouldn’t it just be Tall Ham?

    Comment by Kates | August 25, 2007 | Reply

  4. “And so my question is, ‘How do I put Piper’s theories into practice all the time, rather than only when it comes easily?’”

    To me the key step is striving to know and love Jesus more and more. It is like when Piper talks about the divergent excellencies of Jesus Christ, how they are mysterious, captivating and awe-inspiring. To love God in truth commands the obedience that follows. I’m almost leery of the person who focuses so much on being the “doer” like the brother of the Prodigal Son or like Martha (the sister of Mary), because it can too easily emphasize the will.

    I am confident that when I pray for God to increase our love towards Him, that such a prayer aligns with God’s desire for me. When Jesus becomes our Treasure, then everything else pales in comparison and any “duty” or “obedience in obligation” is seen as a small price for the true Treasure.

    Comment by Steve | November 27, 2007 | Reply


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