The godly are chosen, and by distinguished grace set apart and separated from men,
all the longings of the soul being satisfied in God.
How rash are they, who by rejecting Christ, hate their own mercies merely that they might discover the vanities of sin.
1 Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.
2 O ye sons of men, how long will ye turn my glory into shame? how long will ye love vanity, and seek after leasing? Selah.
3 But know that the LORD hath set apart him that is godly for himself: the LORD will hear when I call unto him.
4 Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. Selah.
5 Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD.
6 There be many that say, Who will shew us any good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.
7 Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn and their wine increased.
8 I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.
Psalm 1 – J. Vernon McGee
Psalm 4:3—Know that the LORD hath set apart him that is godly for Himself.
The Lord sets apart for his own enjoyment.—“A garden inclosed is my sister” (Song of Solomon 4:12). Out of the wild prairie Christ encloses favoured bits of land, that they may become fair gardens in which to walk. God must have spirits with which He can commune; and therefore He shuts selected ones away in sick chambers, in loneliness, and in prisons, that there may be nothing to divert them from the holy intercourse with Himself which he his refreshment and delight.
The Lord sets apart for fellowship in intercessory prayer.—He leads three of the apostles into the shadows of Gethsemane, that they may add their intercessions with his. In each church there is a favoured band to whom He tells his secret anxiety for other souls, and whom He leads out in prayer on the behalf of them and of the world.
The Lord sets apart for service.—Those that separate themselves from evil become vessels unto honour, sanctified and meet for the Master’s use. Do not be surprised if you are withdrawn from the molding crowd, from the ambitions and interests of earlier years; it is the Lord’s way of engaging you for special service.
We can never forget how the Holy Ghost bade the early Church separate Barnabas and Saul to their appointed ministry. They were separated unto the Holy Ghost. A similar separation may become ours. Let us live in the world as those who are set apart for God, like the Temple vessels that might not be put, as Belshazzar attempted to put them, to idolatrous and lascivious purposes. Oh to know what God means when He puts his reserve on the soul, and says, This is my rest for ever, here will I dwell! —Our Daily Homily