Read today’s chapter here... Psalm 1
Psalms Chapter 1
There is no Psalm more fitting to start this most beloved and inspirational book in the Bible. Psalms is a book of worship. In Judaism, studying the Torah (or the law) is a form of worship. To them, reading/studying the law is not only a religious discipline but a delightful spiritual experience, where they can come and connect with YAH.
The Psalms are used heavily in the Jewish culture in daily prayers, special celebrations, and many are sung.
Psalm 1 is a didactic (intended to teach) psalm as well as an example of contrast. This psalm’s aim is to contrast good and wicked as a way to teach a cause and an effect.
Do you know what the cause and effect of studying the scriptures are? Click To Tweet
Happy & Blessed
Blessed as used in verse 1, is a translation of ashrei, in Hebrew, meaning happy, bringing joy. Jesus used the same form of ashrei in the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:2-12). If we exchange blessed for happy verse 1 should read:
Happy is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked…
What the Psalmist is trying to say is that the man who does not incline his ear to the scoffers, nor congregate with them, will walk in happiness which is a great blessing. We reap what we sow; sow with good counsel, reap in happiness.
How can we sow with wise counsel?
Delighting in the Law
Wise counsel may be found in not only studying the Scriptures (anyone can do that!) but in delighting in them! What a world of difference this makes, brethren. If we study the Word with a bored mentality or as though it were homework or a chore, we will miss the hidden manna. This daily bread that should feed and refresh our spirits, our souls, can indeed not satisfy if one does not come with hunger. How then, will we delight in the law if our souls are full of carnal meat? The Psalmist exclaims, that the blessed man finds happiness; his joy is caused by delighting in the law. So much is his joy, that he meditates on it day and night! His hunger is never satisfied, but he never runs out of sustenance.
Not only is the law his nourishment and his source of happiness, but it’s also his wise counsel to be able to stand apart from the wicked scoffers.It's not enough to study the Scriptures but to delight in them as well. Click To Tweet
Have you ever tasted fruit that was not completely matured? If you have, you know that unmatured fruit does not have the best taste, it’s either too sour, unsweet, or bitter. When fruit is too late or too early in the season, this may be the cause to its immaturity. Pay attention to the parallel the Psalmist makes in verse 3. The happy man has been planted in fertile soil beside waters and as a result, his fruit is yielded in maturity. He has wisely, continuously fed himself to maturity but he has also landed on good soil (Matthew 13:1-9). Studying the Scriptures causes the devout Christian to lead a life of continual growth and in turn bear fruit (John 15:1-11).
Torah/the Law brings life to the fertile tree, replenishes it with water, and causes it to bear fruit in season.
The Great Contrast
What is the end result of the foolish scoffer? He is separated from happiness and blessedness. Without wise counsel, the wind easily blows him away like chaff. He will ultimately be separated from enduring joy and happiness, and will not enjoy the blessing of fellowship with the blessed.
The “wisdom” of men is a great folly, as it will fall away and perish. But the Word of God will endure til eternity (Isaiah 40:8). Torah separates the foolish evil from that which is good and our guide on how to live. His Word leads the way which we should take and instructs us on how to walk. His Word is a lamp unto my feet (Psalm 119:1).
If thee craves to grow, then thy soul will be famished.