Vol.XX No.V Pg.3
July 1983

Advice To Avoid

Dan S. Shipley

"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly..." (Ps. 1:1).

God's people, above all others, ought to be a happy and joyful people. Why, then, are so many of them so often otherwise? Simply because they either ignore or forget to apply Bible truth to situations and circumstances of everyday living! — such as that found in this text, for example. God is saying, in effect, "If you want to be happy, don't be influenced by the counsel of ungodly people."

But, who are the "ungodly"? Many tend to view them as the base, immoral, and criminal elements of our society. However, the ungodly may be respected citizens, good neighbors, and even people of high morals. The thing that makes them ungodly is that they are simply without regard and reverence for God. God does not rule their lives. They either have disregard or defiance for the person of God. Now, why does God want His children to avoid the advice of such?

In the first place, they are foolish people. Of the few men God refers to as fools in the Bible, one is the man who says, "there is no God" (Ps. 14:1); the other is the man who lives as if there is no God. He is a practical atheist, something like the foolish farmer of Lk. 12. No doubt he professed faith but, like so many of his modern counterparts, he had no time for God. Finally, his selfish planning is interrupted one night with these words: "Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee..." "This night" shall come to every such foolish man — and, with it, the belated realization that life without God is a tragic mistake. It is foolish for man to say, "There is no God" or to live like it. But it is also foolish to be influenced by the counsel of men who refuse to be influenced by the counsel of God!

Furthermore, and as you might expect, the counsel of ungodly people ignores spiritual relationships and needs. This is one reason why Christians should be very careful in the selection of a professional counselor such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or lawyer. It is not unusual to hear of ungodly "pros" offering solutions and encouraging conduct contrary to God's laws. Doesn't Paul touch on this principle in shaming the Corinthian Christians for going to law with brethren before pagan judges? (1 Cor. 6:1-8) Those who "live by bread alone" are ill equipped to render judgments affecting moral and spiritual issues — and Christians need to remember that! (Especially those seeking help from ungodly marriage counselors!)

But, ungodly professionals are not the only ones that dispense advice worth ignoring. You can get it free. You can get it from an ungodly professor in school who ridicules the Bible and teaches our monkey ancestry or who encourages situation ethics. You can get it from people in high and influential places like Washington and Hollywood and Nashville. They live it, they sing it, and they write it. Advice to be avoided may even come from an ungodly parent or friend. Ignore them and "hear ye Him."