Psalm 37:27

ESV Turn away from evil and do good; so shall you dwell forever.
NIV Turn from evil and do good; then you will dwell in the land forever.
NASB Turn from evil and do good, So that you will dwell forever.
CSB Turn away from evil, do what is good, and settle permanently.
NLT Turn from evil and do good, and you will live in the land forever.
KJV Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore.

What does Psalm 37:27 mean?

David exhorts his readers to reject everything morally wrong and to do what is morally right. Choices are a necessary part of life, but the choice between evil and good has everlasting consequences. No choice is more important, or more fundamental, than to obey the will of God by believing in Jesus Christ (John 3:16–18; 6:28–29).

This verse contains an interesting comment: that the choice between good and evil is tied to life. And, not merely any kind of life, but something phrased as to "dwell forever" or "abide forever." The NIV includes the phrase "in the land," but there are no actual Hebrew words for this in the manuscripts. The CSB makes this "settle permanently," also interpreting this as another reference to the Promised Land (Psalm 37:9, 11). However, this remark is not tied explicitly to any territory. Believers are guaranteed eternal life (John 10:28), a theme which seems to be echoed in the next verse (Psalm 37:28).

When the Hebrews camped in the wilderness on the border of Canaan, they had a choice: to believe God and enter Canaan promptly and possess it or to remain in the wilderness and die. They made the wrong choice, and only faithful Joshua and Caleb and the younger generation entered Canaan, the Promised Land (Numbers 13—14). When faced with temptation, believers in God have a choice: to flee from it or yield to it. Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:19: "Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity" (Luke 13:27; Matthew 7:21–23).
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