What are the “precepts of the Lord” and why would they give us peace, joy and contentment in our souls?
First of all, this is one thing only a truly converted child of God (i.e. born again) can comprehend. The reason is that the empowering and enlightening agent is the Holy Spirit of God. To understand what the precepts of the Lord are, is the key to a different level of thinking which the unsaved do no possess. The precepts are the statutes, laws, decrees and commands of God. We know what those are.
They are not just the ten commandments but the decrees of the Lord which encompass love, mercy, compassion and living a lifestyle which is both pleasing to the Lord, while not offending others. The bible tells us that while some things may be lawful, as regards food and drink etc. not everything is profitable. If something causes someone else to stumble, that thing is an anathema. Why would be want to diminish our testimony by going into a liquor store, buying a bottle of Jack Daniels and a case of Budweiser just as our next door neighbor is driving by, to whom we are trying to witness?
The precepts of the Lord is more than just those which concern loving God and your fellow man. God gave us these to save us from ourselves, as well as to protect His Glorious Name. Committing adultery not just destroys marriages and families, it has the capability to ruin the health of the participants, the children of those families who are now scared for life, once sin is discovered and lead to drug abuse, sin, and depression. Obeying God’s commands to stay faithful to Him and our spouses, gives us peace and harmony in our homes and brings contentment to the nth degree. Stealing robs not just the victim, but it robs the soul, and tarnishes the Name of the Lord. Lying, cheating, coveting and more....are violations, for sure against other people that can have legal as well as ethical repercussions. Not doing those things is optimum and should never be part of our nature or thinking.
These commands and commandments are not to keep us from having fun. They are keep us from harming ourselves! Read all the decrees in the New Testament from the Apostle Paul, in many places, and see why the Lord put them there. It is for us to have a joyful and as pure a life as we can.
God’s Word is pure! His Commandments are pure because He is as Pure as His Word. When He says in 1 Thessalonians 5:13b and following: “Be at peace among yourselves…..admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all (verse 14). Then He says “do not repay evil with evil….”(15). “Rejoice always (16). Pray without ceasing (17). Give thanks in call circumstances (18). Do not quench the Spirit (19). Abstain from every form of evil (22)……He says all of this so that our “whole spirit, soul and body will be kept blameless at the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ (23).
All of this put together, as Psalm 19:8b says, for “enlightening of the eyes”! In the great big Heart of God, what He saying here, is that the eyes of our own spiritual hearts, will see the beauty, joy and comfort of the Lord in the darkness which exists out there in the unsaved evil world.
What an amazing loving God. He cares so much for us, He gave us what the world sees as rules, but we see as the roadmap, to a truly peaceful and joyful life, while we journey here on earth. Hallelujah, what a Savior!
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)