A Right Spirit
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Very often in counseling, we see people
who have recently turned away from a life-dominating
pattern of sin. They are seeking to be restored by
God. Like David in his repentance from adultery
with Bathsheba, they are asking God not only for a clean
heart but also for a "right" spirit:
Create in me a clean heart, O God;
and renew a right spirit within me (Psalm
51:10 italics added).
By "spirit" David means that inner
person from which flow attitude, emotion, and action.
The Hebrew word "right" means to be erect (stand
perpendicular), thus to set up. It is used
in a wide variety of ways meaning to establish,
fix, prepare, apply, appoint, or render
For example, the priests who carried the
ark of the covenant
"stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan
as the Israelites passed over on dry ground" (Joshua
3:17). And the steps of a good man are ordered
by the Lord (Psalm 37:23).
Again, Samuel instructed Israel to
return to the Lord and put away the strange gods from
among them and
"prepare your hearts unto the Lord and serve him
only; and He will deliver you out of the hand of the
Philistines" (I Samuel 7:3). And David had
prepared a place for the ark of God, and pitched for
it a tent (I Chronicles 15:1).
On the other hand, the generation that
perished in the wilderness were
"stubborn and rebellious."
They "set not their heart aright," and
"their spirit was not stedfast with God" (Psalm 78:8).
Thus the Proverbs say, "A man shall not be
established by wickedness: but the root of the
righteous shall not be moved"
Thus a right spirit is one that
is constant, steadfast, and unmovable, because it is
rightly directed toward God and open to His presence. It
stands firm in obedience and faith. And it worships God,
"my heart is fixed, O
God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give
praise" (Psalm 57:7).
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319 Osler Ste. 130 Arlington, TX 76010