Text: “Come unto Me (Christ Jesus), all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”
Good morning, legitimately covetous Christian! Knowing well the gravity of the Tenth Commandment, forbidding us to ‘covet’ things belonging to others - how can we, Spiritually regenerate Christians, legitimately practice coveting? Read on, beloved friend in Christ, and I will teach you a legitimate, God-honouring method of coveting.
“Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.” (Exodus 20:17)
Dictionary Definition - Covet: (verb transitive) to desire or wish for eagerly; to wish for (something belonging to another)…(adjective) Covetous: inordinately desirous; avaricious (greedy for). (The Chambers Dictionary, page 377)
So, with the above dictionary definition clearly established, and the Tenth Commandment of God to the fore of our Christian minds - let us ask ourselves the question: ‘Is it legitimate, in obedience to the Lord God, to ever be covetous?’ I believe it is, and I will now reveal from God’s Word how we can legitimately covet.
True, legitimate coveting, for the sincere Christian, is when our Spiritually regenerate, ‘born again’ hearts are earnestly desiring, eagerly lusting, for the Presence of the Living Lord God Who has saved us; Who has loved us with an everlasting love; and in time sent His only begotten Son, Christ Jesus, to suffer and die on a cruel cross for us, to bear away our sins and redeem us with His precious and sinless Blood. Our coveting is, therefore, totally legitimate when we are coveting more of the Presence and fellowship of the Lord God Almighty. Praise His Holy Name! We love you, Lord!
“As the hart panteth after the water brooks (covets), so panteth my soul after Thee, O God. My soul thirsteth (covets and continues to covet, lusts, and continues to lust) for God, for the Living God; when shall I come and appear before God?” (Psalm 42:1-2)
“If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth; but if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the Blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth (cleanses and continues to cleanse) us from all sin.” (1 John 1:6-7)
It clearly follows then, beloved in Christ, that IF we have true fellowship with God, and ‘covet His Presence’ continually - God, being a Holy Lord God of wrath against all sin, cannot allow us into His Holy Presence, unless we are progressively sanctified by confession of personal sin and a ‘…washing by the water of the Word…’ of God.
Only progressively sanctified sinners can come near the Presence of God without fear of being consumed by the fire of His Absolute Holiness. (1 Peter 1:15-16)
“Wherefore we receiving a Kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: for our God is a consuming fire.” (Hebrews 12:28-29)
Verse 7. “Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me. The first prayer of all those seeking close fellowship with God, who are coveting to be permitted into God’s Presence, should be a prayer of true repentance from sin; a plea to be cleansed afresh from all known and unknown personal sins. To covet God’s Presence and fellowship with a sin-stained heart, is to seek the truly and Spiritually impossible. God’s Holiness, and our sin just cannot mingle. Be honest!
“Behold (look!) the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither His ear heavy, that it cannot hear: but your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear.” (Isaiah 59:1-2)
Verse 8. “When Thou (God) saidst, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek. Oh, for more of this Holy readiness! Would to God, that we were more plastic to the Divine hand, more sensitive of the touch of God’s Spirit.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 137)
God is willing to be known: He is willing to open and discover Himself; God delights not to hide Himself. God stands not upon state, as some emperors do that think their presence diminisheth respect. God is no such God, but He may be searched into. Man, if any weakness be discovered, we can soon search into the depth of his excellency; but with God it is clean otherwise. The more we know of Him, the more we shall admire Him. I desire to be made known and lay open myself to you. As if God were a God that delighted to hide Himself. No; the fault is altogether in us. Seek ye My face. He desires to reveal Himself.” (Richard Sibbes 1577-1635)
Verse 8. “When Thou saidest, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek.’” When we are listening for the Voice of God, we will always be drawn into His Presence in regenerate obedience to our First Love. (Dr C.K. McClinton 1947 - ?)