My son, do not forget my teaching,
but let your heart keep my commandments,
for length of days and years of life
and peace they will add to you. How to live longer and healthier is vitally important in our society, especially to those entering retirement years. When we reach middle-age we begin to measure our life-span. We are at the halfway mark to death if we remain healthy. Now is the time to watch what we eat. We make some lifestyle changes that lessen stress. We read the innumerable articles and books that teach diet, exercise, spirituality, relationships, and so on that will help us achieve a long, healthy life.
There is nothing new under the sun. Proverbs is the ancient book on how to live such a life. Its secret formula is somewhat different from the modern approaches, for its “secret formula” is to live a morally good life, which is defined by righteousness, which is defined by keeping the commandments of God as revealed in Scripture, which are summed up as “the fear of the Lord.”
Remember and keep. Many people forget the good principles and commandments taught them in their early years and so are led astray. Many remember these lessons but reject them in rebellion or like to think of themselves as outgrowing such childish beliefs. Remember and keep, or as the epistle of James says, hear and do. If we are not doers of the word, we become forgetters of the word. We may remember what we are taught, but we forget the power and the blessing of obedience. Like a former athlete, we remember what we performed but we forget the feeling of the performance – we forget how healthy we felt.
Remember and keep. Remember the commands of your Lord – of your Lord Jesus Christ – and keep them. Remember his command to believe in him whom God the Father sent (John 6:29). Remember his instruction that if we love him, we will keep his commandments (John 14:15). Remember his own example, for he remembered all the commandments of his Father and kept them, that he might win our salvation. All the more then, we should remember and keep.
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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By D. Marion Clark. © 2023 Tenth Presbyterian Church. Website: tenth.org