For other posts in this series, click here.
Over the next many weeks, I plan to follow the Psalms on Thursdays/Fridays. Why? Because they tell us the most about who God is. So far, I have picked and chosen different passages to talk specific attributes. I realize that one reason we have the Psalms is because they tell us so much about who God is. Of course, they aren’t the only place in the Bible where you can find that out, but these are songs of worship and include a concentrated segment of that truth in poetic form.
To grow in bope, you must have confidence in the One in whom you are putting your hope
Since I write specifically to a group of people who need hope, a large part of building hope is to know who we putting our hope in. Too often, we are trusting in a god who is a caricature of the true God. The Book of Psalms is a place where we can find truth about the actual God that exists.
In denominations with more liturgy, you will hear a psalm read or sung from the Psalter every Sunday in the worship service. There is a lot to be said for that. Imagine growing up in that kind of church. By the time you are grown, you would have memorized many of the Psalms. You might not be consciously aware of all you actually know, but it is in your mind somewhere. So join me as we go through these Psalms, specifically looking for what they have to say about God. We might learn some other things as well.
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;
but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
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.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the Lord knows the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
The contrast between the wicked and the righteous person
This Psalm contrasts the person who follows after God: doesn’t take counsel from the wicked, doesn’t follow in the way of sinners, doesn’t sit with scoffers, delights in God’s Word, meditates on God’s Word. This person is like a tree planted near water. that flourishes. It bears fruit during the season for fruit. Its leaves don’t wither and dry out. What this person does, prospers.
The wicked aren’t like this. They are like the chaff from wheat. When the wind comes, the chaff blows away. In the end, the wicked person will not hold up in judgement before God. She will be declared guilty and will perish.
But God knows the way of the righteous intimately. She will live. In the end, her righteousness is based on Jesus’ perfect righteousness, not the good things she has done.
A beautiful word picture of the righteous person
One thing I want to mention here is the beautiful word picture seen in the second section of this chapter, that describes the righteous person. Picture that large, beautiful, healthy tree that is full of fruit. Why? Because it was planted near a river and has plenty of water supply. Imagine how lush and beautiful it is with luscious fruit growing on it. That is a picture of the person who delights in God”s Word and spends time meditating on it. It keeps your mind and heart healthy and refreshed. I love word pictures and that is a great one for your encouragement!
What I learned about God from Psalm 1
I found that God is a perfect judge. He sees each person including everything they are doing. He knows all they are doing and thinking, who they spend time with, what informs their decisions. In the end, God, the just and righteous judge, will make a decision about each person. It will be just and right. Were you wicked or righteous?
No one is perfectly righteous apart from Jesus. That answer isn’t in this chapter, but it is in the Bible. If we are meditating on God’s Word, we find that out. For more information, Look here.
Blessings to you as you continue reading the Psalms.