Blessed is the one – Psalm 1

Blessed is the one
Depending on context Blessed can mean “under God’s blessing,” “happy or fulfilled,” or “intrinsically right.” All three meanings apply here. When we are doing right God’s blessing will fall and we will be happy and fulfilled. But we each have a choice to make, as Jesus said.
Matthew 7:13-14 13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
We all face a choice in life. The popular broad road which leads to destruction or the hard to find narrow road which leads to life.
Death or life? What does following the narrow road involve?
Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
The blessing and happiness and the life come as the by-products of living a life which is pleasing to God. How we walk … stand … sit.
How can we find the narrow road?
but whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
Bible Study – teaches us what God wants to know about Him
Meditation opens the door for God to speak directly to us. Not to learn from the written Word but an encounter with the Living Word.
Psalm 119:97 Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.
98 Your commands are always with me and make me wiser than my enemies. 99 I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes.
Psalm 119:148 My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on your promises.
“Meditation is the soul’s chewing”. Meditation simply means thinking about or dwelling on a particular subject or theme or passage of Scripture. It is different from studying. It is more reflective and prayerful. Listen to David Watson.
“Today, the majority of Christians find it extremely hard – almost impossibly so – to hear the voice of God. The problem is that we have forgotten how to be still before him, and we give little time (if any) for Christian meditation.
We need to use God’s word to bring us consciously into God’s presence. Let God’s word speak to us, drawing us to the Father and glorifying the Son. By letting our whole mind and being dwell on one of the names of God or on one aspect of his character, the Spirit will help us to ‘see God’. Words, phrases or even whole passages of scripture are invaluable for this fresh encounter with God. …
The purpose is not to empty the mind of everything, but to detach the mind from worldly cares in order to attach them to Jesus and his word. This aspect is often neglected because in many circles it is assumed that the most important thing about the Bible is its “teaching”. However, much of its poetry, its psalms, its parables, its humour and irony, is lost when it is reduced conceptually to “teaching”. It confronts us not just with information, but with verdicts. In one direction the evangelical approach may be criticised for being too cerebral. The question: “What can I learn from all this?” is not always the right one to ask. Some parts of Scripture serve not to speak about joy, but to give joy; some serve not to instruct us about reconciliation but to reconcile us. The Bible not only tells us about Christ, but also brings Christ to us.”
“To begin with, start with five or ten minutes in silent meditation. As you continue, you will be able slowly to increase the length of time, and, more important, you will begin to hear God speak to you through his written word or by his Spirit in your heart. Soon you will be able to enjoy an increasing sense of the presence of the living God, and better able to hear him as he speaks to you each day.”
The blessings of the narrow road
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.
The dangers of the broad road
Not so the wicked!
They are like chaff that the wind blows away.
Remember how John the Baptist picked up on this picture of wheat and chaff symbolising good and evil when said this about Jesus.
“His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing-floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” (Matthew 3:12)
Sometimes it seems as if the wicked have an easy life! They prosper while Christians suffer. They are lifted up while Christians are overlooked. But we must look at the world from God’s perspective.
The ultimate destiny of all who are on the broad road
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.
There is a symmetry in the Psalm. The final word tells us that DESTRUCTION is the destiny of the wicked – the very opposite of the happiness and fulfillment which the first word of God’s BLESSING promises to the righteous person.
Blessed is the one whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
Meditation is the soul’s chewing. In meditation we mustn’t race through to get to the end, but instead savour every phrase! We invite God to speak directly to us through every single word. That way God’s word can take root and grow and bear fruit within us.
We need to discover the benefits of a sanctified imagination. Entering into the story in our imaginations so that we become a part of it and it becomes a part of us. Experiencing it with our emotions as well as (or sometimes instead of) our understanding. We don’t so much learn about Christ in the written word as have an encounter with Christ who is the Living Word. We need to learn to seek out “the Word who is in the words”. Then the Bible will no longer speak only to our minds but also to our hearts!
God often speaks to people through imagination and intuition and flashes of inspiration. Most of us just need to learn to listen. Then sometimes God will speak to us through specific Bible verses and passages, which will come alive to us as if they were God speaking directly and personally to us.
We have thought briefly about what Psalm 1 can teach us. But for this Psalm to actually touch our hearts and change us, we need to meditation upon it. Let it soak into us so we can hear God speaking to us through it!
So that is what we are going to do now.

This entry was posted in Psalms.

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