All articles are written using the NKJV, unless otherwise noted! All articles are written by David Hicks, unless specified otherwise.

Psalm 15

The Character of Those who may Dwell with the Lord!

David Describes a True Child of God!

As we begin to look into this beautiful and truly enlightening song of David, we first need to know that it was probably written as the Ark of the Covenant was being brought into Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6:16). The significance of the event can be seen in the coming of the Messiah to Jerusalem (a pattern, type, or shadow); in similarity.

In the presence of the significant work of God for men (old or new), there seems to be the desire by many to test what they know they should be, versus what they are willing to be. As the Ark comes to Jerusalem, David is going to head this off with this song (not to be used repetitiously, but as a foundational statement of fact). As Jesus came to Jerusalem, He would likewise find the question poised; “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” (Matthew 22:36). In both instances, the probable and asked questions do not exist because God has not revealed, they exist because men often seeks to offer only what they are willing to offer. This is the spirit in which we should see this song of David. The true character of those who may come before the tabernacle, or even to dwell with the Lord in His true home; heaven.

Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle?
Who may dwell in Your holy hill?

2 He who walks uprightly,
    And works righteousness,
    And speaks the truth in his heart;
3 He who does not backbite with his tongue,
    Nor does evil to his neighbor,
    Nor does he take up a reproach against his friend;
4 In whose eyes a vile person is despised,
    But he honors those who fear the Lord;
He who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
5 He who does not put out his money at usury,
    Nor does he take a bribe against the innocent.

He who does these things shall never be moved.

The song is in an obvious question and answer format; however, the question is of utmost importance. The question is not establishing the names or specifically who (as in predetermined individuals); but the question is poised to determine “What kind of person shall know this privilege?” In the New Testament, this question would correspond with, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” (Acts 2:37).

Although the term “tabernacle” means ‘tent’, or ‘house’, and may very well be specifically spoken of by David concerning coming to the temple to worship; we cannot be naïve to fail to include the ultimate understanding of where God lives as the ultimate destination sought.

The answer to the all-important question comes in verses 2-5. There are eleven elements in the character of the man granted access (not to be all inclusive, but founding all the qualities necessary). Note the positive and the negative nature in the list:

·         He walks uprightly (as determined by his God).

·         He works righteousness (as instructed by his God).

·         He speaks truth in his heart.

·         He does not slander.

·         He does not do evil to others.

·         He does not take a reproach against a neighbor.

·         He despises the reprobate (morally unprincipled).

·         He honors God’s people.

·         He honor’s solemn promises.

·         He does not put his money out for interest.

·         He will not accept a bribe to wrong the innocent. 

We might expect that going into the temple of the Lord might be the finishing statement to those who exhibit this character; but note that it is different here.

“He who does these things shall never be moved.”

The individual who can produce these eleven ear marks of the true child of God, will never be removed from his safe position in the favor of God!

Now read Paul’s words to the Christians at Ephesus and you and me posthumously; and notice that this song is once again defined as the needed character of the redeemed saint – Ephesians 4:25-5:21 (this being just one of many such character lists, see also: Romans 12:9-21; Galatians 5:22-26; Colossians 3:1-17.

Now note the words of Peter, with the same end result!

2 Peter 1:5-11 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.

10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; 11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

Be diligent to come to God’s House!