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.
The Psalmist is asking the quintessential question, what kind of person gets to draw near to God and then remain in His presence? David describes that person as one who has real integrity in both words and deeds. Their words are truthful, spoken in love and without slander. In other words, their word is their bond and they do not use speech to hurt or defame others. The godly person commits themselves to doing the right, honest thing. A righteous person is happy to loan money to someone without interest and their integrity cannot be compromised by a bribe. This person is rock solid in their character and is kept immovable by the Lord.
Integrity means that a person is not divided, but rather whole. Doing the right thing naturally flows from their heart. Hypocrisy is the opposite of integrity for it connotes one who says one thing and does another. The Psalmist prays for integrity in Psalm 86:11, Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.
The Psalmist is not describing a sinless person, for no one is sinless. The believer prays every day, “Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who have sinned against us.” But David is pointing to the fact that God values integrity. We cannot expect to live in the presence of the Lord if we do not allow the Lord to transform our lives and establish Christ-like character. We are freed from guilt and condemnation by the blood of Christ, but that freedom is a freedom that results in a life of love and integrity. We rely on the faithfulness of God and not our own, but God will give us an undivided heart. Over time we will reflect undivided, Christ-like integrity.
What aspects of your life do not reveal integrity or wholeness? Ask the Lord to give you an undivided heart that you might reflect the character of Christ and His gracious generosity.
Lord, I want to dwell in your presence. I often avoid you because I see my own sinfulness and hypocrisy and I want to run away. Bring me to a place of repentance as I look to your righteousness alone to bring me freedom. Give me an undivided heart that I might fear your name. Help me avoid the two pits of condemnation and hypocrisy. Make me a person of rock-solid integrity, generosity, and compassion. Amen.