This post last updated on July 31st, 2023
‘Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly.’ Psalm 1:1
Welcome to a guest post by my new friend Grace Oji! Her writing is inspiring and she stays close to God’s word. Grace is one of the kindest, most gracious people I’ve had the pleasure of connecting with. You can read more about Grace at the end of her post.
We know as we live, life is not necessarily a smooth ride. We have questions, other times confusion. Through all these there seems to be an overflow of answers from which we can choose. However, worldly counsel is absolutely dangerous.
God knows this and gave us Psalm 1:1 to guide our decisions and let us move only in the way that represents light.
Blessed is the man who does not walk in the advice of the wicked; nor does he stand in the way of sinners; nor does he sit in the assembly of mockers.Psalm 1:1 (LEB)
Table of Contents
Worldly Counsel: Advice of the Wicked
These are some ‘counsels of the ungodly’ that I’ve heard and why we as believers should not pay heed to them.
Follow Your Heart
This worldly advice is extremely popular, growing up it sounded so good and harmless. Numerous movies and songs we once loved have used this famous line. Yet how many realize the extent to which it can destroy our destinies? Many have followed up with relationships and decisions that were downward spirals.
What we feel like doing or what we want isn’t always what we need at a particular time.
The word of God is in direct opposition to the world’s counsel to follow your heart.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?Jeremiah 17:9
There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.Proverbs 14:12
The Bible describes the true condition of our hearts confirming how we are easily deceived by it, leaving us God’s Truth and the Holy Spirit to follow.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.John 14:6
And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.Mark 8:34
Only Our Hearts Matter
Recall when the prophet Samuel was about to anoint the first son of Jesse as king (1 Samuel 16:6-7). He made that choice based on looks but God restrained him because God sees beyond the physical into the heart.
From here some have deduced that only our hearts matter, regardless what the outward appearance may be.
As believers, we are not advocates of pretense where the outside looks good while the inside is stale and rotten, and vice versa. Our stance should be a clean heart and appearance with reputable conduct. We are called to stand against ungodly worldly counsel.
Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.Matthew 7:20
Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.Luke 3:8
In truth, our conduct should match our hearts and glorify our Father in heaven before men.
Don’t Wait for Sex
Worldly counsel says that sex before marriage is not only desirable, but healthy. Social advice tells you sex doesn’t have to wait until marriage, but when you’re “mature enough.”
With spikes in STDs, STIs and teenage pregnancies, this may sound reasonable and fair and wise till we sit to ponder on the origin of sex and the instructions He gave regarding it.
God created the idea of sex and only He is authorized to give us it’s manual. He says sex is to be expressed only in the bond of marriage and anything else has consequences which only serve to destroy us.
The complications of broken relationships where sex was involved is only one of many reasons confirming the biblical standard of sex. Obviously our maturity has not stopped the damage caused by pre and extra-marital sex or by lust.
Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.1 Corinthians 6:18
For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour;1Thessalonians 4:3-4
The Multitude Can’t Be Wrong
‘How can all these people be wrong.’
Can’t remember the exact time I heard this, I only know I wasn’t ready for a full blown argument. I could only give a quiet voiceless prayer that God would shed His light of understanding on them.
After the flood, only eight were saved of the whole earth. Only eight from the multitude of people (Genesis 7:23).
God cannot be compared to the numbers of men neither the wisdom of men, though in their billions. It is written, ‘the foolishness of God is wiser than man’.
The Lord determines the way we go rather than the multitude of people.
Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance: behold, he taketh up the isles as a very little thing.Isaiah 40:15
Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.1 Corinthians 1:25
The Pastor Is Doing It So Why Can’t I?
Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.Matthew 15:14
A pastor or leader in church is like a Shepherd caring for the sheep. While they are meant to be our examples, they are still human.
It is great disservice to oneself to forget who we’re truly following. Jesus is our perfect example, only He can we follow without question. Anything short of this and you might find yourself falling into a pit.
Humans, including believers, may have weaknesses like pride or anger which may infect their judgement and decisions.
Therefore, it is safe to say only Jesus deserves this statement, ‘If he’s doing it then it’s the right thing to do.’
As Long As It’s Not Harming Anyone It’s Not So Bad
Harming here is supposed to mean causing physical injury.
In other words, as long as an act is not causing someone else to bleed or break some bones it should be okay. This has been one of the ways porn and some other forms of sexual defilement are justified. Such response is also used to lessen the gravity of these crimes.
Neither give place to the devil.Ephesians 4:27
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.1 Corinthians 10:31
The Bible says the devil is like a roaring lion seeking whom to devour, seeking doors and passageways into our lives to make a total wreck. By such acts not only we, but our loved ones are hardly left out when it comes to consequences.
There becomes broken trust. Families, marriages, or businesses might even be ruined, though none escape with the tiniest scratch on his skin.
Living is never about selfish desires but godly desires that God alone may be glorified.
When You’re in Rome Act Like the Romans
This has to be included here not because it’s outright evil, but due to an interpretation given to it not for the good.
This worldly counsel has to do with behaving like others in a particular place, adapting to their way of life, or if possible even their mindset.
I witnessed it being used in school in a string of mockery towards a fellow student who was not in terms with malpractices for the sake of higher scores and grades. I thought how many times it may have been used to pull someone into a chain of wrongdoing and ultimately a dreadful end.
It’s true this is the way to go sometimes, but not all the time, and never for the things God clearly condemns.
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.Romans 12:2
They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.John 17:16
You Don’t Need to Display Your Faith Openly
You don’t need to display your faith openly at all; wrong. You need to display your faith with an upright state of heart in a truly God-honouring way; correct.
While we don’t need to give alms with a loud noise and extravagant party so everyone can see and praise us, we need to close our eyes and pray for a friend or colleague at work, while shopping, or any where else if we need to. We need to practice our faith although with a heart of humility and wisdom.
Nothing should dissuade us from praying over our food in a restaurant because of subtle stares people nearby may give, as long as our acts are not rooted in pride and are not done in a way to show an obvious need for attention.
Some believe any such act must be due to an over-hyped view of oneself. This is not a balanced stance as there’s a place for humble acts of service and examples towards society.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.Matthew 5:16
Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.Philippians 2:3
Grace is a Christian writer and editor who has been working with bloggers and ministries for over three years to bring more light of the Gospel to people. You can connect with her online: