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                         "THE BOOK OF PSALMS"

               Psalm 15 - The Marks Of A True Worshiper

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS PSALM

1) To note the character of those whom God would have worship Him

2) To be reminded of basic principles of righteous conduct required by
   God

SUMMARY

The heading attributes this psalm to David, and may have been written
in anticipation of the ark's restoration to Israel and establishment of
public worship in Jerusalem (cf. 2Sa 6:1-19).  It is didactic in
nature, and is entitled by Leupold as "The Marks Of A True Worshiper."

The psalm begins with two questions addressed to Jehovah (LORD),
perhaps prompted by the incident involving Uzzah touching the ark when
it was being transported improperly on the back of a cart (cf. 2 Sam
6:3-7; Num 4:5-15; 7:9).  Since no one could actually take up residence
in the tabernacle, the inquiry could be paraphrased "Whom will You
accept when he comes to Your house, O Lord?" (1).

The answer provided begins with a general description of a true
worshiper as one who walks uprightly and works righteousness.  More
specifically, the true worshiper is one who does not lie (cf. Ep 4:25),
backbite with his tongue (cf. Jm 4:11), do evil to his neighbor, or
take up a reproach against his friend (cf. Ps 101:5-8).  He despises a
vile person, but honors those who fear the Lord (cf. Ps 16:3;
119:63).  His upright character is illustrated by his unwillingness to
go back on his word even if he has sworn to his own detriment (e.g.,
Josh 9:18-20; Judg 11:35).  He also will not loan money at interest (cf.
Exo 22:25; Deut 23:19,20), or take bribes (cf. Exo 23:8) against the
innocent (2-5a).

The psalm ends with a declaration that one who does these things shall
never be moved.  This is because he is privileged to draw near to God
(cf. Ps 16:8), and is reminiscent of the blessed man of Psalms 1 who
prospers in every thing he does (5b).

OUTLINE

I. THE QUESTION POSED (15:1)

   A. WHO MAY ABIDE IN THE LORD'S TABERNACLE? (1a)

   B. WHO MAY DWELL IN HIS HOLY HILL? (1b)

II. THE ANSWER PROVIDED (15:2-5)

   A. IN GENERAL TERMS (2a)
      1. He who walks uprightly
      2. He who works righteousness

   B. IN SPECIFIC TERMS (2b-5)
      1. He who speaks truth in his heart
      2. He who does not...
         a. Backbite with his tongue
         b. Do evil to his neighbor
         c. Take up a reproach against his friend
      3. In whose eyes...
         a. A vile person is despised
         b. One who fears the Lord is honored
      4. He who swears to his own hurt and does not change
      5. He who does not...
         a. Put out his money at usury (interest)
         b. Take a bribe against the innocent
      -- He who does these things shall never be moved

REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE PSALM

1) What are the main points of this psalm?
   - The question posed (1)
   - The answer provided (2-5)

2) Who is the author of this psalm?
   - David

3) What is the character or style of this psalm?
   - Didactic (designed to teach or instruct)

4) What question(s) does the psalmist ask at the beginning? (1)
   - Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle?
   - Who may dwell in Your holy hill?

5) What is the answer in general terms? (2a)
   - He who walks uprightly and works righteousness

6) What is the answer in more specific terms? (2b-5a)
   - He who speaks the truth in his heart
   - He who does not backbite with his tongue
   - He who does no evil to his neighbor
   - He who does not take up a reproach against his friend
   - He who despises a vile person
   - He who honors those who fear the Lord
   - He who swears to his own hurt and does not change
   - He who does not put out his money at usury
   - He who does not take a bribe against the innocent

7) What is said of one who does all these things? (5b)
   - He shall never be moved
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