The Bible says in Psalms Chapter 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. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. 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. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.”
The Book of Psalms is just that, a book of songs and poetry. Even music and poetry teaches and influences. Ideally those teachings and influences should be things that are true and things that praise and give glory to the name of God like the book of Psalms. In the book of Psalms one of the most well known passages is perhaps Psalm 1. It is so well known because it is a song which gives one of the most important and most basic pieces of advice that can be given to anyone about life from both a spiritual and a practical standpoint. And it begins by saying in verse 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.”
Everyone wants to be blessed. To be blessed means to be happy, to have good things happen to you, and to be full and satisfied. It all comes down to decisions. Every time you make the right decision you will be blessed. And every time you do not you will not be blessed. It’s very simple in this life. There are three things you must not do and one thing you must do, if you want to be blessed. Verse 1 talks about the three things you must not do. The first one is: do not walk in the counsel of the ungodly. This sounds very simple and it is, but if the statistics could be counted the truth is that most people fail at this.
Everywhere you go on your journey in life you are going to find yourself bombarded with ideas and philosophies and teachings. And you are going to choose which to accept and which to reject. In school, at work, from your neighbors, when you turn on the TV or go to the movies, when you listen to music, when you read a magazine or a book, even when you look at a billboard as you are driving down the road you are going to find yourself bombarded with council. Most of this council is bad. “Ungodly” simply means anything that is not of God. How can two walk together except they be agreed? Do not agree with and do not walk with the council of the ungodly if you want to be blessed. You will find that if you do not walk in the council of the ungodly, that those who do: will not want to walk with you and that is a blessed situation.
The second thing to not do is: do not stand in the way of sinners. God gave man a human will. The human will is only stoppable by the will of God. Some people are determined to do what they do. Don’t stand in their way or you just might find yourself dragged down with them. This word carries with it the idea of a “continual abiding with.” If your friends go to bars and drink, don’t go hang out with them thinking that you can hang out with them and not do what they do, and still be a testimony to them.
The third thing this verse says is: do not sit in the seat of the scornful. To sit has the idea of “to marry,” in other words it’s the idea of a union and an agreement with. Scornful means to be a mocker. This mostly implies the idea of people’s attitudes and the things they say. People who take God’s name in vain are mockers. People who do not give God credit and glory and thanks and who do not recognize what God does are people who are scornful. In other words stay away from any and all teachings that are not of God, do not hang around the people of the world when they do their worldly activities, and don’t agree with those who go around with scornful mouths, who are blind, void of faith, who cannot see all that God does in His matchless grace.
As we consider these three things to not do, we should also remember there are always those who are totally opposed to the will of God. Such persons will be whole heartedly following after these three things rather than trying to not do them. And even more than that some people will be determined to do everything they can to try to get you to fail at making the right decisions. Do not fear. Such people think they are smart but God has a fiery destiny waiting for them. It is important though to be wise unto such.
Psalm 10:2-8, “The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined. For the wicked boasteth of his heart's desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth. The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts. His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them. He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity. His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity. He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor. He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.”
Micah 7:2, “The good man is perished out of the earth: and there is none upright among men: they all lie in wait for blood; they hunt every man his brother with a net.” Remember as you strive to heed the warning of Psalms 1:1 there are those who will be doing just the opposite. Avoid them like the plague once you recognize them because they will come after you, not ostentatiously, not in an obvious manner but with as much subtlety as the human intellect can devise because to lie in wait means to ambush.
Psalm 1:2 tells us 1 thing to do to be blessed, “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.” Delight has the idea of pleasure and willingness. It certainly is hard to delight in something if you know nothing about it. The Word of God is profound in its wisdoms and its knowledge runs deeper in their mysteries than the paths of the seas. It requires effort and thinking, time, patience and study. It certainly is hard to do something if you don’t enjoy it. And it is going to be a lot harder to do something 24 hours a day if you don’t delight in it.
It should be obvious why in Psalm 1:2 there is only 1 thing mentioned to do and that is to study the Bible. In the beginning God spoke and said, “let there be light,” and there was light, and the light divided the night from the day. Psalm 29:7 says, “The voice of the Lord divideth the flames of fire.” The most powerful force in this world is not the will of man. It is not nuclear power. It is not anything other than The Word of God.
The first and foremost importance of God’s Word is that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. The Bible is essentially a book about Jesus and what He has done and will do for men. The most important thing that God has done for men is to send Jesus to die for our sins. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the World, that He gave His only begotten Son that whosever believeth in Him should not perish but have life everlasting.” The most important part of the journey of life is to hear and to believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But once you have heard and learned and believed, how can you possibly grasp all there is to grasp of the eternal Gospel unless you meditate on it day and night. Meditating day and night is not an exaggeration. There are 24 hours in a day. How often do you ever willingly and with delight go without food? Most people delight in eating. And when you eat food it is ingested into your body and it continues to be broken down and digested. It doesn’t just pass into the mouth and then through the body to be immediately disposed of. Jesus said man shall not live by bread alone but by every Word of God. You have 24 hours of opportunity every day to meditate on God’s Word. How much of that opportunity do most people take advantage of?
Perhaps one of the best ways to come to understand the meaning of Psalm 1:2 is to take a look back in the book of Genesis: at the creation of the world. Genesis Chapter 1 says, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day. And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”
By reading Genesis chapter 1 there can be no doubt that the Words of God are more involved in this world than most of us realize or often think about. The Word of God is somehow involved in every molecule, every atom, every life, every stone, every blade of grass, every cloud that passes in the sky, every moment that the stars shine, and every time the sun rises and falls: behind it all is the Word of God. There are three things to not do, Psalms chapter 1 says, but there is only one thing to do: to meditate day and night in the Word of God. Any given moment of the day most people’s minds have at least several streams of thought consciously flowing. There is no excuse to not be always thinking about God’s Word, unless of course you do not delight in it. Who knows what blessings you will be missing out on in life any moment that you spend not meditating on the Word of God. The reason that some people do not delight in God’s Word is simply because they do not know it. The more you know about God’s Word, the more you will delight in it.
goes on to say, “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.” Jesus also made reference to a tree when he said in
Luke 13:18-19, “Unto what
There are different kinds of trees. As we just read in Genesis Chapter 1, the first words that God spoke unto Adam was the commandment to be fruitful. There are of course two kinds of fruit, physical and spiritual. A person who can be called successful in the truest sense of the word is one who brings forth fruit. Psalms 1:3 is referring to a tree that brings forth fruit, a fruit tree, just like many of the trees which Adam found in the Garden of Eden.
In Genesis Chapter one it says of man and woman that God blessed them, then commanded them to be fruitful. The truth is you have already been blessed. There is nothing you need to do to be blessed. God has already blessed you: Jesus died for your sins. Thus there is forgiveness and eternal life. God has also given you abilities and opportunity, the opportunity of each day. There is also the certainty of the promises of what God is going to do in the future. It’s very simple to avoid walking in the council of the ungodly, to not stand in the way of sinners, and to not sit in the seat of the scornful, but rather meditate in the Word of God day and night. Then you will be fruitful in everything else that you do.
Psalm 1:4 says, “The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.” Have you ever heard the phrase the winds of change? Life is uncertain, it has change, nothing stays the same forever, life has sorrow, life has disappointment, life has injustice, life has evil, and life even has our own sinful failures that can beat us down. At its end life has death. These things will give you heart-ache, these things will give you mental problems, and these things will make you think you are not blessed even though you are. All of these things will blow you about like chaff in the wind. An ungodly person is simply a person who does not trust in God. Of course the first thing you must trust in God for is forgiveness of your sins through His Son Jesus. And after that you must learn to trust in God for everything else in life. Otherwise you will be like chaff blown about in the wind. When it comes time to stand for the truth and be a witness to Jesus you will fail and you will falter against all the forces of evil and the peer pressure of men because you will be but chaff blown about in the wind. When it comes time to suffer, will you fail? Do you want to fail? Or do you want to succeed? For those who do the will of God there is no such thing as broken dreams because God’s will is always accomplished.
Jesus said in Luke 6:43-49, “For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh. And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.” This parable of Jesus is another way of saying what is said here in Psalms chapter 1. Jesus also mentioned a tree and the bringing forth of fruit. There is an old Hymn whose chorus goes, “On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand.” Remember what Psalms 1:4 says, “the ungodly are not so but are as the chaff which the wind driveth away.” Lastly Psalms 1:5-6 says, “Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.”
The judgment referred to here in Psalms 1:5 is what is often referred to and depicted in the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ as the great White throne judgment. Hebrews 9:27 says, “It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” There must be a judgment because there must be justice for all the wrong done in this world because God is holy and God is just. First notice the word “stand.” In reference to this judgment Revelations 20:12-14 says, “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
Next notice the word “congregation” in Psalm 1:5. This word means family. The congregation of the righteous is the family of God. This may seem odd considering it also says in Psalms 1:5 that sinners will not stand in the congregation of the righteous. But we are all sinners! Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” However Revelations 20 mentions that only those not found in the book of life are cast into the lake of fire.
Lastly notice that in verse six the word “LORD” is used. This is the Old Testament Word for Jehovah, and Jehovah is the Old Testament equivalent to the New Testament name Jesus. Psalms 1:6 says, “For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: But the way of the ungodly shall perish.”
Let us not be confused. The congregation of the righteous is the family of God, and it is not a congregation that everyone belongs to. You must first become part of that family by trusting in Jesus. God loves everyone equally. That’s why the Bible says in John 3:16, “For God so Loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son.” There can only be unity through truth, which means there must be separation from that which is untrue. Remember the 3 things Psalms 1:1 says, “Blessed is the man that walks not in the council of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful.”
Remember also what we just read in Genesis 1. It says God blessed them and then said be fruitful and multiply. You are already blessed. The truth is there are just too many blessings from God for anyone to possibly ever be thankful or appreciate them all in this life. Even if you spent all your time sitting and thinking and trying to be thankful for those blessings you would not be able to do it, there are just too many. And God made it that way.
1 Peter 1:18-20 says, “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.”
The blessings of God began before even the world was made. And Psalm chapter 1 is a Psalm which tells us how to enjoy those blessings and to be fruitful. It’s very simple. Concerning the blessed man: Psalm 1:2 says, “His delight is in the law of the LORD; and in His law doeth he meditate day and night.” Paul said in Romans chapter 7:25, “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.” How much you actually serve God might actually be dependant upon just how much you think about and study God’s Word. Psalms chapter 1 verse 2 may be more important than you yet realize.
Notice the word “LORD” again in Psalm 1:2. There is the written Word, and there is the Living Word, Jesus. Both make up the Word of God. We now have all the Word of God that we are going to get in this life because that’s all we need and God spent 2000 years giving those words to us. In eternity one can only imagine the Words of God that will be given to us face to face by Jesus Himself. Blessed is the man who delights in the law of the LORD. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth fruit, and he shall be known of God.
Just remember what Psalm 1:2 says concerning the blessed man, “His delight is in the law of the LORD; and in His law doeth he meditate day and night.” If you are uncertain still of the importance of this consider Psalm 10:4, “The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.”
Copyright; 2011 by Charles
F. (Rick) Creech
All Rights Reserved