Monday 28 November 2011

Bible Book:

and on his law they meditate day and night." (vv. 1-2)

Psalm 1 Monday 28 November 2011


Psalm 1 sets the scene for the whole book of Psalms. In sometranslations, it's even treated as a prologue to the book, and somescholars that it was written by Solomon as an introduction.

Here the author sets out some basic principles for good living,linking wisdom and sound choices to a good quality of life.Righteous people are "happy" for two reasons. Firstly, they desirethe things of God - they delight in God's Law ("the law of theLord") and take only sound advice. This keeps them rooted andfruitful in life, like a strong tree planted near to a river.Secondly, the psalmist tells us that the righteous prosper in allthat they do.

Conversely, wicked people have nothing to keep them anchored inlife and are vulnerable to the winds of life, blown about likechaff (finely chopped straw) (verse 4). They have no hope ofstanding firm or making wise choices and their path will end indestruction.

The secret of the righteous person's success is their proximity toGod and their commitment to following God's path, rather thanlistening to those who are wicked. Scottish poet Robert Burnsparaphrases Psalm 1 in a poem. The first verse summarises the psalm'score message perfectly:

The man, in life wherever plac'd,
hath happiness in store,
who walks not in the wicked's way,
nor learns their guilty lore!

The psalmist is urging all those who seek the right path in life tostick close to God and learn his ways. If they trust othersinstead, they may learn bad habits from the wicked.

To Ponder

Do you 'meditate on God's law day and night'?What impact does it have on your faith and discipleship?

Who do you go to for advice? Are there people youavoid asking for guidance? Why?

Psalm 1 seems to imply that 'righteous' peoplehave a better and more prosperous life than the 'wicked'? Do youthink that's what the author means? How does that make youfeel?

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