Jan 22, 2015

Our All-Seeing Lord

Proverbs 15:3

"The eyes of the LORDŽ‘’ are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good."

Most of us reading this devotional are likely what the world would consider "ordinary" people. We are not leaders of great nations. Our accomplishments will never make it into history books. Our actions will never be the focus of the paparazzi. Given such a reality, it is all too easy for us to think that what we do is essentially insignificant. Few, if any, will notice our contributions and our service, so we might wonder if our actions are meaningful in any real sense. Similarly, the fact that we are "ordinary" and that no other human being sees much of what we do or think might lead us to believe that the sins we commit in secret will never be found out. No one will see what we do behind closed doors, so we need not worry about bending the rules when no one else is around.

Only a solid grasp of the omnipresence and omniscience of the Lord disabuses us of these notions. Today's passage gives perhaps the most succinct statement on these attributes of God in all of Scripture. We read in Proverbs 15:3 that "the eyes of the LORD are in every place." No one is so insignificant as to be ignored by our Creator. Nothing is so trivial that God overlooks it. We never find ourselves in a situation where no one is looking, for even if other people never see our thoughts and deeds, the Lord does. When the psalmist asks God, "Where shall I flee from your presence?" the answer is clear: nowhere (Ps. 139:7).

This is sobering because Proverbs 15:3 also says the eyes of the Lord are "keeping watch on the evil and the good." The Almighty is no passive observer. He takes stock of every situation, evaluating it according to His unchanging standards. The use of the verb keeping watch in other contexts indicates that our Creator observes in such a way as to prepare Himself for the appropriate course of action. When people do good, God will reward them. When they do evil, they will suffer the consequences. We may not separate this from the biblical truth that outside of Christ, no one can do what is fully good according to God's perfect standards and that even followers of Jesus fall short in their obedience. This is why we rely only on Christ's perfect righteousness for our justification (Rom. 3:21-26; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 John 1:8-9). Still, we cannot allow that precious truth to blunt the force of Proverbs 15:3: God will deal appropriately with all of our deeds. This should motivate us to do what is right—not to get into the kingdom, for our deeds cannot merit salvation—that we might please our Father and receive blessings over and above our heavenly citizenship (Matt. 25:14-30).‰

Coram Deo

Matthew Henry comments that God has "an eye to discern all, not only from which nothing can be concealed, but by which every thing is actually inspected, and nothing overlooked or looked slightly upon. . . . An eye to distinguish both persons and actions. He beholds the evil and the good, is displeased with the evil and approves of the good, and will judge men according to the sight of his eyes." God sees all that we do, and He will not forget those who obey Him.

For Further Study