Sunday, October 14, 2012

You are either righteous or ungodly

A depiction of Christ's Parable of the
Pharisee and tax collector - Luke 18:9-14.
One was ungodly; the other was justified
by God.
Psalm 1:1-6 is one of this Christian emeritus pastor's favorite Psalms. It is only 6 verses long; but full of defining content. The Hebrew literary style leaves no question in the mind of the reader that there are only 2 types of individuals; the righteous and the ungodly. These two entities are contrasted with each other.

Psalm 1:1 - Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 

Psalm 1:2 - But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. 

Psalm 1:3 - And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. 

Psalm 1:4 - The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. 

Psalm 1:5 - Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. 

Psalm 1:6 - For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish. - KJV

[Please note that by placing your cursor over the individual verse you will be seeing the NKJV - New King James Bible translation]

The righteous:

The righteous [person] does not take advice from the ungodly (sinner). He does not involve himself in the way of the ungodly. His way of life is totally different than the unregenerate sinner whose life is marked by scorn toward not only godly religion, but the godly, themselves.

In short, the righteous person's direction in life is totally opposite the ungodly sinner who scoffs and derides the Christian disciple's way - the way of Christ. The pursuit of the righteous man is to delight himself in Almighty God; and in His written revelation, the Scriptures. As he does this, his path in life and death is a divine success. His works take on a beneficial spiritual quality. He will be blessed (favored) by Creator God. Romans 4:3

The ungodly:

The ungodly because of their sins against their 
holy Creator God, are by their sinful nature
 adamantly predisposed against God. 
Ephesians 2:1-2
The ungodly person as described in Psalm 1:1f is not only described as "ungodly," but as a "sinner." This would distinguish a person in his continued unregenerate state. The soul which has not been regenerated by God is lost to his own damning sins. He (or she) has rejected the forgiveness gained by Christ who died for the sins of the whole world. That person then, dies in damning unbelief. Hence, this Psalm describes the eternal fate of the ungodly. They will not inhabit the same space as the righteous. And, they will be driven away as the chaff is, in the wind. Matthew 25:31-46 is the account of the righteous and the ungodly. Christ, Himself calls the the righteous, "blessed of My Father," who are invited to inherit that which is prepared for them. However, the ungodly are called the "goats" who will go away into everlasting punishment prepared for the devil and his wicked angels.

You can't fool God:

Friend, God Almighty will not be fooled. He knows your heart. He knows whether you are presently one of His or whether you are ungodly, headed for hell. You may think that because you make a show of religious activity, that, that action will stand you in good with God. The Bible calls this show, "works." [Ephesians 2:8:9] Your good intentions and works cannot affect your right standing before a holy God. The Scripture says that you must be born from above [John 3:5;6;7;8] It says that belief in Christ will make the eternal difference for your soul. [John 3:1-21 ; Ephesians 2:8;9] The Scripture says that it is by faith that you are justified (made right with God) - Romans 4:3

You cannot expect to attend church and be told of Christ's sacrifice for you and your sins, and expect then that you are "in like flint" to be one of heaven's own. That, is a false gospel of Universalism. It's a gospel devoid of Scriptural teaching balance. It's a gospel which over emphasizes the Atonement of Christ as a be all and end all; and, in the process, disses the Holy Spirit of God who initiates faith and grants to the lost soul the forgiveness of sins, brought about by Christ's holy crucifixion sacrifice [atonement] for the world's sins. In short, Universalism is a false gospel which is void of saving faith.

Genuine faith; not in a formula; but faith in the
Person of Christ.
The Bible proclaims that it is faith in Christ, which saves a human soul from the eternal consequences of human sin. It never says that faith in a church formula saves the soul. It never says that "faithful" church membership in a particular Christian denomination saves a soul from eternal damnation. It never says that if you follow this and that step, that you will have arrived in the good graces of God. No. It relates about belief and faith in Jesus Christ, which saves the [your] soul. John 3:1-21 ; Ephesians 2:8;9

Your soul is priceless:

Unregenerate friend, you have a priceless soul. But, your whole being is sinful. It will not qualify you to be in the company of the righteous and to be afforded God's holy presence in heaven. Your sins are an offense to God. His holy presence will not allow sin in His holy heaven. Your soul needs to be clothed with Christ's righteousness. You need to be dressed in His garments of holiness. [Matthew 21:1-14 ; Philippians 3:8;9] You need the "faith of Christ" as the Apostle Paul stated in one of his epistle writings - 2 Timothy 4:7-8.

Friend, the Bible makes it clear that head knowledge will not save; nor faith in formula; nor faithful church attendance; nor doing works of mercy to one's neighbor. Simple trusting faith in Christ, is what saves your wretched priceless soul. Ephesians 2:8;9

A Poem:

In the Gospel of John 10:1f, Christ speaks of Himself
as the True Shepherd and also as the "gate"
 [door]:  "I am the door. If anyone enters by Me,
 he will be saved, and will go in and out and find
 pasture" John 10:9
There's a saying often heard -- tis this; "There's many ways to Heaven, and God approves them all." That is not true my precious friends; that's just not true at all.

For those who talk in such a way I take my pen in hand, and hope this picture that I paint will help them understand.

I seem to see an angel stand beside a golden gate. Beyond the gate is Paradise, where heavenly glories wait. Stretched through the Heavens wait a throng who fain would enter there; the angel sentry they must pass -- He questions them with care:

"Do you know the password?" he inquires, of a man of stately mien. "Presbyterian," he proclaims, "My people all have been!" The angel bends on the stately soul, a searching look - yet kind, then turns the leaves of his golden book; but the word he cannot find. "I'm sorry," he says, but it is not here, friend, kindly step aside, As soon as you think of the proper words the gate will open wide."

A friendly look the next soul has He eagerly draws near. "With Methodists I meet," he says, "I'm sure you know us here." The angel loveth the friendly soul by his face we can plainly see, yet he stops for a look at his golden book, "The name is not here," said he. "Stand here by the Presbyterian," He said with a pitying smile. "You'll surely remember the proper words when you have thought awhile."

The next soul carries a book of prayer, and calmly doth advance. "Episcopalian," the angel bends on his book a searching glance. "Tis sorry work, oh soul," he says "But only one thing to do. I've looked but I cannot find the name. I must keep you waiting, too."

A Catholic next in line doth come, "Tis the one true Church," he saith. On page after page the angel looks, but no mention the record hath. "Neither have you the answer given my Master doth demand. You, too dear soul must step aside, and with the others stand."

And now a soul approaches him in the Baptist faith well versed, who tells the angel in detail of how he was immersed. The angel hears the story through with interest to the end. But this, his simple verdict was, "This will not save, my friend."

A follower of Luther next, comes up before the gate, and in the great reformer's name doth his credentials state. "Luther I know," the angel says, "Heaven holds him very dear. But following him is not the way to gain an entrance here."

Jesus:  "Verily I say unto you, Whosoever
shall not receive the kingdom of God as
a little child, he shall not enter therein."
Gospel of Mark 10:15

And now, a very little child stands where the rest have stood. Whose voice rang out, in accents clear, "I trust in Jesus,' blood!"

Lo, at these words the golden gate suddenly opens wide, and a lovely One with nail pierced hands, welcomes the child inside.

If you were summoned today, my friend, to stand at the gate of God, would your answer be that of the little child, "I trust in Jesus' blood?"

Note: Above poem’s author – anonymous

Unregenerate friend - where do you obtain the faith of a little child to trust in Christ and in His holy cleansing sacrifice for you? You obtain that faith in the Scriptural divine revelation:

"Faith comes by hearing and by hearing the Word of God."  - Romans 10:17.  

Please also note other related Scriptures:  

Romans 1:16 ; 2 Timothy 3:14-17 ; Acts 8:26-39 ; 1 Peter 1:23 ; 2 Thessalonians 2:14 ; James 1:18

It is the same Word of God which the righteous delight in (Psalm 1:3) which is God's means to bring you to faith by His Holy Spirit.


Salvation unto us has come by God's free grace and favor;
Good works cannot avert our doom, they help and save us never.
Faith looks to Jesus Christ alone, Who did for all the world atone;
He is our one Redeemer.

Faith clings to Jesus' cross alone and rests in Him unceasing;

And by its fruits true faith is known, with Love and hope increasing.
Yet faith alone doth justify, works serve thy neighbor and supply
the proof that faith is living.

[TLH - 1941 ; CPH - "Salvation unto us has come" - Verse 1 and 9]

Related Topical Messages to the above:
Above Message and Related Scriptures [below] -- Intended can utilized in a simple worship format:

Also: For a couple of other (more formal) worship formats:
The Order of Morning Service
The Order of Matins

Related Scriptures:

Scriptures describing the "scornful:"

Proverbs 1:22 ; Proverbs 3:34 ; Proverbs 9:7;8;9 ; Proverbs 13:1 ; Proverbs 15:12

The end of the ungodly:

Matthew 25:31-46 - The Last Judgement

Luke 16:19-31 - Christ's Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus

The Gospel [Good News] of Jesus Christ:

John 1:1-14 and John 3:1-21

Luke 18:9-14

Other related topical messages:

Of Whom Does the Prophet Speak" -- by Victor Buksbazen -- an in-depth view of Isaiah 53:1-12 and the prophecy of Christ, hundred of years before his birth. Isaiah 53:1-12 underscores the truthfulness of Divine Revelation as exemplified in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures.

Please Note: Topical Christian Messages, by subject

Pastor (Emeritus) Nathan Bickel

Please also note:

The "Words in Season" topical messages and related worship formatare not intended to discourage or replace the Christian worship and assembly of Christians at their particular places of church worship. As this website's author, it is my prayer and hope, that many souls will find the topical messages and related worship format and other material, a useful and valuable Christian resource.

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