Sometimes it feels like today’s pop-culture is a slow-motion train wreck flying off the rails, and I often wonder how the early Church dealt with similar circumstances. I’m sure there was plenty of discouragement, but along with inspired letters from the Apostles, they would have also had this “gem” from the Psalms as a daily encouragement:
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so but are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore, the ungodly shall 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 ungodly shall perish.” – Psalms 1:1-6 NKJV
We too can draw strength from the fact that God knows us. In Christ, we’ve been made one of the righteous. Here are three benefits from applying this Psalm:
- Joy from the Word – Our delight should be in His Word (v.2). To the Believer, “the Law” represents Christ’s work on the cross, satisfying God’s requirements and the grace He’s shown. Prayerfully pondering the depths of His Word should be part of my life each day. Christian authors/speakers are good, but only the scripture is the actual revealed truth of God. Don’t sacrifice time “in the Word” for someone talking “about the Word”.
- Health from Staying Connected- The image of a tree growing and producing fruit is common in scripture to represent a person following God’s instructions (such as Galatians 4:22-23). The most important part of a tree is the hidden root system below the surface. Our roots must sink deep and be connected to the source of living water-Christ; or we’ll be prone to stunted growth and low fruit production.
- Peace from Keeping Wins/Loses in Perspective – The cultural battle can easily drift into terms of wins and losses, but this Psalm helps me remember that God will ultimately “put things right”. There will be a day when God’s sovereignty will be on full display for everyone to see, but it isn’t a reason for smugness. We are to share truth in love and a prayerful way (Colossians 4:2-6). Bible passages aren’t bullets for a holy six-gun, but life-giving seeds for new trees.
Remember, the race is set before us (Heb. 12:1-2) and it’s not over yet, let’s keep running…