Remove Not the Ancient Landmark

This directive was written to the Israelites in the long ago and had to do with real estate and land markers between neighbors (Proverbs 22:10ff). But it has real application in a spiritual sense as well. The spiritual roadmap remains forever unchanged. The human spirit is the same as it was at creation. It needs to travel the path mapped by its God. The ancient landmarks are on that road for the protection of spiritual travelers making their way back to their eternal home.

When physical landmarks are changed or removed, we can lose our way, blur our real estate property lines, etc., all perhaps rather minor inconveniences when compared to the spiritual lostness that results when spiritual landmarks are removed or dishonored.

The ancient landmark of purity of life has been, and is being, summarily discarded even by those who profess some degree of allegiance to God. There is a sharp contrast between spiritual purity and its opposite. The line is not blurred and hard to understand. Following God's way leads to purity of life; an abandonment of it leads to lack of purity of life. The problem is not a gray area of misunderstanding. It is clearly a lack of making a right choice and subsequently practicing self-control. On every hand we have expert professionals to help cloud the issues; humanist psychologists and social scientists rationalize (rational lies?) and decorate wrong until it looks acceptable. Right motivated people are wrongly influenced and seduced by professionals who have altered or removed God's ancient landmarks.

Fidelity in the relationships of marriage, parenthood, and friendship; commitment to right principles in business; the sanctity of one's word: all these are ancient landmarks placed on life's roadmap by a loving Father who doesn't want his children straying off the old paths to their hurt. Physical landmarks come and go as we progress or regress, but spiritual landmarks are there for all time and are changed at the changer's peril.

Spiritual landmarks do not need updating and changing because human needs and nature remain as they were from the beginning. The safety net from creation to judgment remains the same: it is the honoring of a loving Father's safeguards - the ancient landmarks are in place for our protection.

Commitment and fidelity are ancient landmarks whose removal endangers human happiness. Those who honor them have it all: inner peace and satisfaction here and a happy return home when this life is over. To him that has it shall be given (Matt. 13:12). The value system that leaves God out, loses happiness both here and eternally. From him that has not, it shall be taken away.

Today, as a society, we are unhappy, dissatisfied, unfulfilled. We have unnumbered teenagers who see no meaning in life; suicide is rampant; homosexuality, abortion, divorce, casual sex - you name it, great segments of our society have tried and are trying it. But it's readily apparent that it's not working, nor will it. We've lost our way because we have removed or ignored the ancient landmarks, and we are paying the bitter price. There is a better Way, and we would do well to seek it out and return to it before our journey is over.

Aline Edson

Published in The Old Paths Archive (