Do you want to live a life that is unshakable—one so filled with blessing that no circumstance can steal from you? Psalm 15 has the secret to your success!
With winds reaching up to 180 mph, a hurricane is a powerful and destructive storm system—its brute force has the potential to destroy nearly everything in its path. With lashing winds, flying waves and torrents of rain, it has the ability to tear down even the strongest structures. It seems nothing can withstand its torrential force. Except one thing—the palm tree.
If you’ve ever watched footage of a hurricane, you’ll notice all kinds of destruction and chaos. Even the mighty oak tree is uprooted and torn apart with hurricane force. Yet, palm trees stand their ground—they are not moved. Sure, they will bend with the storm, but they don’t break, and they are rarely uprooted. Quite often, a palm tree is the last thing standing after a great storm—a symbol of resistance in the face of overwhelming adversity.
Even before Jesus came to earth, the palm branch was a symbol of triumph and victory. So it is no surprise that God uses the palm tree to paint of picture of how we, as believers, are to live. Psalm 92:12 says, “The [uncompromisingly] righteous shall flourish like the palm tree.” They will “[be long-lived, stately, upright, useful, and fruitful]” (AMPC). They will live in victory—and they won’t be moved.
How do we become spiritual palm trees?
Psalm 15 offers a plan to becoming like a palm tree—one who can “daily dwell in the life of the Holy Spirit” (verse 1, TPT) and will “never be moved” (verse 5, ESV). It is the path to a flourishing, blessed and unshakable life.
How about you? Would you like to live that kind of life?
You can get there! Below are five ways you can build and live a Psalm 15 life.
1. Walk Uprightly
“He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart.” –Psalm 15:2 (NKJV)
One thing that causes a palm tree to withstand the storms and never be shaken is its root system. Its roots go deep beneath the surface. When we are rooted and grounded in God and His commands (abiding in Him as He abides in us), we will be like the palm tree in our daily lives. We will have strong roots and walk uprightly.
What does it mean to walk uprightly? The Bible describes Job as “blameless and upright,” then goes on to define him as one who “feared God and shunned evil” (Job 1:1, NIV). In other words, to be one who walks uprightly, we must obey God’s commands and stand strong against the temptation to sin. To put it even more simply—put the good in, keep the bad out.
Those who walk uprightly are uncompromising and humble, keep their eyes and ears from unclean things, avoid sin, deal honestly, have unwavering faith, and walk in love toward others. They are not hypocrites—speaking one way but living another. They walk uprightly in public and in private—speaking truth in their hearts.
To walk uprightly brings countless blessings. Aside from being unshakable and immovable, the upright are pleasing to God. Psalm 84:11 says He won’t withhold any good thing from those who walk uprightly. Nothing will be impossible for those who purpose to keep His commandments and stay out of sin.
2. Refuse to Speak Against Others
“Those who refuse to gossip or harm their neighbors or speak evil of their friends.” –Psalm 15:3
As strong as the palm tree can be, one thing can cause its roots to weaken—disease. Over time, the disease will eat away at the roots until one day it topples over, falling to the ground.
Psalm 15 tells us how to get strong and stay strong—by protecting ourselves from the disease of speaking against others. Speaking against others is in direct disobedience to the commandment to love one another (John 13:34-35). It weakens our roots and opens the door for Satan to access our lives.
A person who cannot be moved is a person who refuses to speak against others in any way. That’s where a lot of people miss it. They don’t realize how much damage is done with the tongue. That’s why James 3:5 warns us that, though the tongue is small, “a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire.”
The Psalm 15 life is one that does not participate in gossiping about others. Gossip is serious sin. It’s slander, it promotes discord among believers, and it violates the commandment of love (John 13:34).
Anytime you speak something negative or reveal something about someone else when they aren’t present—it’s gossip. Even if it’s under the guise of a “prayer request.”
Remember this: the devil is the accuser of believers. So, when gossips accuse and slander others, they are acting like the original accuser! People who like to reveal others’ secrets can cause a great deal of strife among the people with whom they associate. Many times, the tales they pass on may even be true but certainly not pure, lovely or good reports (Philippians 4:8).
One of the things God hates most is for someone to sow discord among fellow beleivers (Proverbs 6:19). So, stay clear of one who gossips, who accuses others and spreads strife. And you definitely want to make sure you aren’t that kind of person yourself!
Determine to do “no wrong to a neighbor” and “speak no evil of your friends” (Psalm 15:3). There are so many people in the world who are ready to tear others down and criticize. Don’t be that kind of person! “So encourage each other and build each other up” (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Purpose in your heart to respect, love and consider others before you consider yourself (Philippians 2:3). Then you will have success, and be one who cannot be shaken.
If you struggle in that area—speaking harshly to people—repent and turn around. Look up 1 Corinthians 13 about the love of God, and put it in your eyes and heart until it becomes a checklist for you. If you’ve wronged someone, repent. Make things right. Put strife aside and determine to succeed in becoming a flourishing palm tree.
3. Stand Against Evil, Honor the Godly
“They will speak out passionately against evil and evil workers while commending the faithful ones who follow after the truth.” –Psalm 15:4 (TPT)
When a storm comes, no matter how big, the palm tree won’t stand down. It looks adversity in the face and refuses to be moved. That’s a picture of us as believers living the Psalm 15 life.
As you obey the Word of God and walk in love, it will become easier for you to fulfill the requirement to speak passionately against evil—it will be a natural response from your heart. There is a temptation among Christians today to avoid controversial issues for fear of becoming involved in an uncomfortable confrontation. But Jesus did not advocate this, nor did He demonstrate it in His own life.
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As the Church, and as rooted and unshakable Christians, we cannot call evil good and good evil. This includes abortion, same-sex marriage and the opposition to Israel, to name a few. Psalm 15 tells us that the person who may dwell in the Lord’s secret place and cannot be moved is one who will “speak out passionately against evil and evil workers” (verse 4, TPT). They are not silent or passive. They stand for what is right.
Further, the righteous will not elevate those who do evil simply because they are admired in the public eye or happen to be popular celebrities. Uncompromising Christians are just that—unwilling to move with the winds of change in the world around us. That is why “anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God” (James 4:4, NIV). In other words, the righteous will align themselves with the right people and avoid the wrong ones.
While we oppose evil, living the Psalm 15 life means recognizing and honoring those who are faithful to the Lord and His ways. To honor is to respect, and not criticize or tear down, Christian leaders and ministers, as well as our fellow believers. Did Jesus say everyone will know we are Christians because we go to church? Or because we tell them we are? No. He said they will know we are Christians because we love one another (John 13:35).
4. Keep Your Word
“He who swears to his own hurt and does not change.” –Psalm 15:4 (NKJV)
One of the major reasons people have a hard time believing God and understanding how He keeps His Word is because their word isn’t any good. But the righteous, unshakable person described in Psalm 15 is one “who swears to his own hurt and does not change.”
What does it mean to swear to your own hurt?
It means if you make a commitment, you don’t call later and ask to get out of it. It means you always tell the truth—you don’t lie—not even a little bit. You’re trustworthy and dependable. People respect and honor you because they know you keep your word no matter what it costs.
Make a decision that your say-so is something people can always count on. “Let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’” (Matthew 5:37, NKJV). Don’t go back on your word—keep it. Be faithful and reliable. Then, you’ll be unshakable and immovable.
Of course, this will help you think more seriously before you make any commitments, because you’ll know once you’ve said you’ll be somewhere or do something—it’s done.
That’s how God operates. When He speaks, He means what He says. He won’t go back on His Word. And when you begin to operate that way as well, you’ll begin to have a revelation about God and His Word, and it will activate your faith in a whole new way.
5. Refuse to Misuse Money
“Those who lend money without charging interest, and who cannot be bribed to lie about the innocent.” –Psalm 15:5
The one who lives a Psalm 15 life and cannot be moved is a giver. He doesn’t help you just because he wants to make money off you. He’s a giver, not a loaner. In other words, this is the kind of person who isn’t out looking for people who are in trouble, so he can loan them money and then strong-arm them for five times the amount or take everything they own. No, the righteous will never crush others with exploitation or abuse.
Those who live the Psalm 15 life are those who can never be bought with a bribe against the innocent. There are 84 verses in the Bible about bribery, all with the same message—it is wicked, and those who participate in it will be ruined and will not prosper. One verse is Proverbs 15:27, which says, “The greedy bring ruin to their households, but the one who hates bribes will live” (NIV).
God Himself has given us grace and forgiveness, and we are expected to give and love in that same way. The righteous don’t give only when they can get a return. Those who cannot be shaken are those who love and serve, whether there is a profit involved or not. They put God and people before money. Their priorities are straight.
In conclusion, when you live the Psalm 15 life and walk uprightly, refuse to speak against others, stand against evil, keep your word, and keep integrity in the way you handle money, you will become like a palm tree—immovable, unshakable and fruitful. No matter what comes your way—you will stand firm and prosper!
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