Updated: 2 days ago
Peace & Blessings Beloved,
TGBTG for allowing us to see another day. I pray all is well with you and yours, and that your week has been fruitful & blessed thus far.
Last week we concluded our overview of the Old Testament Book of Psalms. Today, we begin the actual study of Psalms, beginning with the first chapter.
With that in mind, let's get to it.
Psalm 1 (ESV)
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.
3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. 4 The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; 6 for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
Now I grew up on the KJV, and I vividly recall having to commit this Psalm to memory, in Sunday School. In that spirit, I will share the KJV version below, followed by the analysis.
1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6 For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.
The Blessed Man is contrasted to the ungodly man
vs. 1-2 — Practice of the Blessed Man
vs. 3 — Power of the Blessed Man
vs. 4-6 — Permanency of the Blessed Man
Two Men — Two Ways — Two Destinies
Synopsis (Righteous vs Ungodly):
The ungodly are led by the counsel of the wicked, in the way of sinners, to the seat of the scornful; they have no delight in the law of God; they bring forth no fruit but what is evil. The righteous are like useful, fruitful trees: the ungodly are like the chaff which the wind drives away. They are of no worth in God's account, how highly soever they may value themselves. They are easily driven to and fro by every wind of temptation. Those that, by their own sin and folly, make themselves as chaff, will be found so before the whirlwind and fire of Divine wrath.
To meditate in God's word, is to discourse with ourselves concerning the great things contained in it, with close application of mind and focus of thought.
The Hebrew word esher is here translated blessed, which has the idea of happiness or contentment. Esher is a form of the Hebrew word ashar, which in its root means to be straight or to be right. Blessed is the man speaks of the happiness, the blessedness, the contentment in the life of the man or woman who is right or straight with God. The righteous man will be a blessed man, a happy man.
The blessed man does not do certain things. There is a way he will not walk, a path he will not stand in, and a seat he will not sit in.
The righteous man and the ungodly man are different in how they think, how they behave, and to whom they belong.
The righteous man knows how to stay away from the counsel of the ungodly.
The righteous man knows how to discern the counsel of the ungodly. Many fail at this point. They do not even consider if counsel is godly or ungodly. They hear advice, or theories about their problems, and they find themselves agreeing or disagreeing without considering, Is this godly or ungodly counsel?
The righteous man is also discerning enough to know the counsel of the ungodly can come from one’s own self. Our own conscience, our own mind, our own heart, can give us ungodly counsel.
The righteous man knows where to find completely godly counsel: Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors (Psalm 119:24). God’s word is always the best counselor, and godly counselors will always bring the truth of God’s word to help someone who wants counseling.
Sinners have a path where they stand, and the righteous man knows he does not belong on that path. Path speaks of a way, a road, a direction – and the righteous man is not traveling in the same direction as sinners.
The righteous man is not afraid to take a less-traveled road, because he knows it leads to blessing, happiness, and eternal life. Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it (Matthew 7:13).
The righteous can have the confidence of Psalm 16:11: You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. God has a path, and it is a good road to take.
The scornful love to sit and criticize the people of God and the things of God. The righteous man will not sit in that seat.
When others are putting down Christians, it is easy to sit with them and criticize them. It is easy because there are many things to criticize about Christians. But it is wrong, because we are then sitting in the seat of the scornful.
Throughout Psalms, the phrase law of the LORD is used to describe God’s entire word, not only the law portion of the first five books of the Bible. The righteous man is delighted with the word of God.
If a person delights in something, you don’t have to beg him to do it or to like it. He will do it all by himself. You can measure your delight for the word of God by how much you hunger for it.
The righteous man ponders the word of God. He does not just hear it and forget it; he thinks about it. Christians should meditate on God’s word. But this type of meditation should not be confused with secular, pagan meditation
For example, in eastern meditation, the goal is to empty the mind. This is dangerous, because an empty mind may present an open invitation to deception or a demonic spirit. But in Christian meditation, the goal is to fill your mind with the word of God.
The righteous man only has God’s word on his mind two times a day: day and night.
A tree by a river has a continual source of water. It will never wither away, because it is always getting what it needs.
The life of the righteous man is marked by strength and stability.
The righteous man bears fruit, such as the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). The fruit comes naturally from this tree, because it is planted by the rivers of water. It is abiding in a life-source. As Jesus spoke of bearing fruit in John 15:5, as we abide in Him. Fruit also has a season. Some get discouraged when they begin to walk as righteous men, and fruit is not immediately evident. They need to wait until they bring forth fruit in its season.
in the life of the righteous man, God brings forth something good and wonderful out of everything. Even tough circumstances bring forth something that shall prosper.
Everything true about the righteous man – stable as a tree, continual life and nourishment, fruitful, alive, and prosperous – is not so regarding the ungodly.
Chaff is the light shell around a kernel of grain, which must be stripped away before the kernel of grain can be ground into flour. Chaff was light enough that it could be separated from the grain by throwing a scoopful into the wind and letting the wind drive away the chaff. This is how unstable, how lacking in substance, the ungodly are.
Sinners will not share the same glorious future of the righteous.
The righteous can have peace because a loving God in heaven knows their way, and will protect and preserve them.
The way of the ungodly leads to destruction. They are on a broad path that may seem comfortable now and the path gives them lots of company, but in the end they shall perish.
The ungodly are the reverse of the righteous, both in character and condition
The doom of the ungodly is fixed, but whenever the sinner becomes sensible of this guilt and misery, he may be admitted into the company of the righteous by Christ the living way, and become in Christ a new creature. He has new desires, new pleasures, hopes, fears, sorrows, companions, and employments. His thoughts, words, and actions are changed. He enters on a new state, and bears a new character.
The righteous should be proud to follow Jesus Christ
May we establish, nurture, and grow a sincere love for the word of God, and study it lovingly & faithfully.
I pray you receive this with the love intended, and apply it to wisdom.
Love you much.
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Blessed!
P.S- If you have not given your life to Jesus Christ, I implore you to take the time to do so right now. Use John 3:16 & Romans 10:9-10 as a foundation for making your confession of faith. And use Ephesians 2:1-10 to provide proper context for your salvation.