Walking in the Counsel of God

Paul PayneTeaching Resources

1Blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable) is the man who walks and lives not in the counsel of the ungodly [following their advice, their plans and purposes], nor stands [submissive and inactive] in the path where sinners walk, nor sits down [to relax and rest] where the scornful [and the mockers] gather. 2But his delight and desire are in the law of the Lord, and on His law (the precepts, the instructions, the teachings of God) he habitually mediates (ponders and studies) by day and by night. 3And he shall be like a tree firmly planted [and tended] by the streams of water, ready to bring forth its fruit in its season; its leaf also shall not fade or wither; and everything he does shall prosper [and come to maturity].

Psalm 1:1-3 (AMP)

How thrilling it is to know that God has provided a way for His children to live in abundance and prosperity even while the rest of the world is in the midst of lack and shortages. Some of you may be asking, “How?” The answer is very clear from the scriptures upon which we are basing this lesson: by learning to walk in the counsel of God.

You must make a choice to either walk in the counsel of the world or the counsel of God. You cannot walk in both counsels. To walk in the counsel of the world is to follow their advice, their plans, and their purposes. The world’s counsel is founded upon wisdom which comes not from above, but is sensual, earthly, and devilish (James 3:15-17).

When a man chooses to walk in this counsel, he will walk with an attitude of being insecure simply because he cannot depend upon the world’s system of doing things. The world’s system is not stable, and it is capable of failure – thus making the man unstable and capable of failure.

Walking in the world’s counsel also causes you to stand submissive to all the problems, troubles, woes, and cares that come your way with no resistance at all. You begin to take the attitude of there’s nothing I can do; what will be, will be. But thanks be to God, there is something you can do according to James 4:7. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. When a man has made a quality decision to walk in God’s counsel, he will begin to stand with a sense of authority and an attitude of being immovable. In Ephesians 6:10-17, we find the advice and instructions of the Holy Spirit:

10Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 13Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; 15and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. 17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God.

Following His advice will cause you to become like the man described by the psalmist: fruitful, prosperous, and mature.

Our very first step of walking in faith is the new birth. In Ephesians 2:8 we read, For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God. The manner in which you release your faith towards the new birth is found in Romans 10:9. It states, That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

After the new birth, our entire Christian walk should be by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). Walking in faith demands that you not be moved by five physical sense evidence or the circumstances around you. You must learn to be moved only by the Word. Your attitude should become like that of the centurion who approached Jesus in Matthew 8:5-13. In verse 8, the centurion said, speak the word only, indicating that his confidence was in the Word and its authority alone.

If you’ll read the entire eleventh chapter of Hebrews, you’ll notice that the words by (or through) faith appear eighteen times. There must be a reason for this. It is the keynote to Christian living. By faith we work, by faith we worship, by faith we endure, and by faith we win.

In Ephesians 2:2-3, the Apostle Paul gives us a description of how we walked before the new birth took place:

2Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the LUSTS OF OUR FLESH, FULFILLING THE DESIRES OF THE FLESH AND OF THE MIND; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others (emphasis added).

After the new birth, you are not to be lorded over any longer by your senses, nor should you continue to fulfill the lust of your flesh. In Romans 6:4, we are told to walk in newness of life. How? The answer is found in Galatians 5:16-18:

16This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. 18But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.

You are not to allow your flesh to dominate you but to allow your recreated spirit to reach the position of ascendency over your flesh. If you’ll read Romans 7:1-25, you’ll notice the warfare described between the spirit and the flesh. Your new spirit nature desires to follow the things of God, but the members of the flesh desire to follow carnal things. This warfare becomes so intense that finally, in verse 24, Paul cries out, O wretched man I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? Praise God, we don’t have to be lorded over by a carnal nature any longer. We are free – spirit, soul, and body!

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