Friday, March 28th, 2014
Twelve Steps To Heaven (Part 9)
Step #9: Keep Your Word
Lord, who may abide in Your Tabernacle?
Who may dwell in Your Holy Hill?
He who walks uprightly,
And works righteousness,
And speaks the truth in his heart;
He who does not backbite with his tongue,
Nor does evil to his neighbor,
Nor does he take up a reproach against his friend;
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;
Psalm 15:1-4 (NKJV)
If a man makes a vow to the Lord, or swears an oath to bind himself by some agreement, he shall not break his word; he shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth.
Numbers 30:2 (NKJV)
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Keep your word... even when it hurts, even when others do not, even when a better deal comes along, and even when you made a mistake. Why? Because God keeps His Word and He expects us to keep ours.
To God, a deal is a deal. Second guessing invites trouble.
'My covenant I will not break, nor alter the Word that has gone out of My Lips' (Psalm 89:34). 'Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make It good?' (Numbers 23:19). 'Not one Word of all the good Words which the Lord your God spoke concerning you has failed; All have been fulfilled for you, not One of Them has failed' (Joshua 23:14).
'For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest Letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished' (Matthew 5:18).
Joshua was deceived into a bad contract. Even so, he honored it. David was pledged to a bad king. Even so, he honored him. Both men of God were bound by hard agreements.* But God honored them because they honored their word. Even more, He defended and promoted them.
In the 21st century, thoughtless words fly with devilish speed. By media, mouths become exploding missiles. By Twitter, words become tactless tales: trails of idle talk. 'I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment' (Matthew 12:36).
For new stars to step on the stages of reality TV, fierce contracts carry heavy chains, tempting talent to sign--or leave.** At the same time, our 'Faithless and perverse generation' (Matthew 17:17) promises much, but fulfills little. For most of us, our word is no longer our bond.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: be the exception. 'Let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’ ' (Matthew 5:37). Do not enter any agreement unless you intend to keep it--even if it hurts. Because the hurt will be small, but your blessing will be bigger.
If you back out of any commitment (verbal or written, because to God they are the same), expect the opposite: the blessing will be small, but your hurt will be bigger.
To Be Continued...
* Joshua fulfilled his pledge to the Gibeonites, although they tricked him into it: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=joshua+9&version=NKJV
* David refused to murder King Saul, although King Saul tried (repeatedly) to murder him: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+samuel+24&version=NKJV
** Harsh contracts on 'The Voice': http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/voice-harsh-contract-deny-contestants-including-voice-article-1.1721131
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Twelve Steps To Heaven series.