Psalm One

FIRMLY PLANTED BY STREAMS OF WATER
FIRMLY PLANTED BY STREAMS OF WATER

TWO WALKING PATHS

Psalm One not only begins the Psalter (The Jewish Book of Praises), it lays down in six short verses a succinct overview of the entire Biblical message.

In this terse Psalm, the defining line between the two types of man is drawn. Which side of the line we stand on determines our standing with God.

Will we choose the path to eternal fellowship with Him, or will we choose the path to eternal separation from Him?

The characteristics and consequences of each choice are outlined.

THE TWO PATHS

Psalm One compares two paths: The path of righteousness and the path of unrighteousness. The path of unrighteousness is easy. The path of righteousness is difficult. This is why the true Biblical message (in its non-truncated delivery) is not an easy sell. We don't want our lives to be difficult.

After all, isn't this why we go to church? So our lives won't be difficult? I hope not. But I fear the reality may be otherwise.

THE LOCAL CHURCH: NOT A QUICK SIDEBAR!

The local church as the hope of the world is a theme our pastor consistently weaves into the fabric of our church community. I know this to be true! Such a bedrock truth cannot be shaken or unseated. Christ said as much.

"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it." (Matthew 18:19).

Even so, the Christian life is often viewed as unsettling and avoided. But as unsettling as it "appears", this "difficult" life is necessary. Necessary for a life of blessing; a solid Biblical paradox.

The CHURCH is fertile ground for our spiritual development. She is the way to keep us grounded on the right path. The church is the embodiment of the people of God. The church is a place for community, for growth, for fellowship, for learning, and for apprenticeship to the master: the head of the church, Jesus Christ. This is the church!

AVOIDANCE

If we avoid the church and choose to walk the different path, the end is clear.

There is no ambiguity. Wiggle room has been put to bed.

PSALM ONE: ONE

How Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,

Nor stand in the path of sinners,

Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! (NASB)

The initial verse of Psalm One classifies the blessed man as one who has found redemptive favor with the LORD. This man (or woman) has discovered the wellspring of life that comes from our creator God.

In his blessedness, he's learned to avoid individuals openly detrimental to his fellowship with God. Daily interaction in society is to be viewed as a means of witness. This illustration simply warns the believer to avoid people or situations whom they know could lead them down wrong paths.

A focused understanding of sin and it's consequences separates the blessed from the wicked.

Awareness of one's own sin and the desire to be right with God defines the blessed man.

PSALM ONE: TWO

But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night.

As an outflow of his love for God, the blessed man consistently feeds himself with the word of God. It is his spiritual food. The lens through which he sees all of life.

A dedication to the scriptures and subsequent revelation brings great joy to the blessed man. The words are not mere words. They are life-energizing and motivating toward an obedient lifestyle.

Embedding our minds with the word tranforms our daily thoughts and actions.

THE WISDOM PSALMS:

Psalm 1: The Introductory Wisdom Psalm.

Psalm 37: The wisdom of God directed toward man.

Psalm 119: The longest chapter in the Bible. Also the center.

PSALM ONE: THREE

He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,

which yields it fruit in its season

And its leaf does not wither;

And in whatever he does he prospers. (NASB)

A beautiful illustration of the benefits of a Godly life. The blessings that follow a life of obedience remind the blessed man of his dependence on God. He takes great joy in blessing us!

God plants us in life. The blessings we receive are sustained with our obedience (the streams of water).

It is our responsibility to effectively steward our blessings. By doing so, God's ultimate plan of productivity for our lives is achieved. These are the leaves that do not wither and the prosperity that follows.

PSALM ONE: FOUR

The wicked are not so;

But they are like chaff which the wind drives away. (NASB)

Chaff is the remnant after the substantive grain has been harvested and used. It is left to be discarded.

The metaphor of chaff being blown by the wind not only describes the willingness of the ungodly to be blown around by sinful desires; but illustrates the final futility of sin. -- Blown away to nothingness.

PSALM ONE: FIVE

Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgement,

Nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous (NASB)

All men are sinners. So all men will come before Christ in judgement.

Those who stand in the judgement will be separated for an eternal fellowship with God. Those who fail the judgement (by not accepting the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior), are sent away.

PSALM ONE: SIX

For the LORD knows the way of the righteous,

But the way of the wicked will perish.

To know in Biblical terms is to maintain intimacy with another.

Since God operates outside our paramaters of time, He knows who will follow Him and who will not. For those who follow Him, He becomes involved in their lives and leads them to greater knowledge of Him and His blessings.

Those whom God does not know, He leaves alone!

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS

The Book of Psalms is truly a masterpiece. It is timeless and alive!

My hope is that you take some time to reflect on the incredibly important life you lead. Ask yourself what path you are on? Then decide where to continue.

The Bible is clear. The words are God-breathed and true!

Blessings and peace!

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Comments 17 comments

In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California

Rob,

I love the poetic teachings that are shown to us in Psalms. Such great promises are given in this verse of scripture. The prophet Jeremiah also elaborates, "Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit." Thank you for these wonderful teachings from the Old Testament.


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 8 years ago from Midwest USA Author

Thanks again for your nice comments. Bad on me to forget the passage in Jeremiah. So much of Psalms coincides with the rest of scripture how can we not believe the overall integrity of holy writ! I always enjoy a visit from the doghouse. BTW: Your hubs on the airline industry are very informative.


Froggy213 profile image

Froggy213 8 years ago from On A Mountain In Puerto Rico

Thank you Rob--great hub--one which I needed


joapan profile image

joapan 8 years ago

Rob,

Very good teaching! God's word is so true! (although I would change one thing .... Jesus is building His "assembly" (ekklesia), not "church" which was a wrong translation from Greek to English, as "church" means the building (KJV translators changed it to mean "the Lord's house").

I love this Psalm. When my younger daughter was in 1st grade in Christian school she had to memorize it. It was a special time hearing her recite it.

Thanks for posting this!

Joanne


commentonthis7 profile image

commentonthis7 8 years ago

Great Hub Keep spreading the word


LisaG profile image

LisaG 8 years ago from Caribbean

Nice work Rob. The bible is the God's instruction manual for us and the psalms are good examples for us to learn to pray.

Keep it up.


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 8 years ago from Midwest USA Author

Thanks everyone for your continued kindness. Blessings to all!


chuckconcepts 8 years ago

I enjoy the Psalter. In the old Presbyterian and Reformed Churches. Metrical versions of the Psalms were sung weekly!


RGraf profile image

RGraf 8 years ago from Wisconsin

Beautiful words. I always go to the Pslams when I need help.


BDazzler profile image

BDazzler 8 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

Thanks for posting this!


RGraf profile image

RGraf 7 years ago from Wisconsin

Very good piece. thank you for the words to help me today!


Vladimir Uhri profile image

Vladimir Uhri 7 years ago from HubPages, FB

 

I am really late discovering your writings. This was blessing for me. I like expression of Church: "The CHURCH is fertile ground for our spiritual development. "One my friend is disappointed of Hubs, since it is more on the liberal side. But now I see we have many believers here. Thanks Lord for this. We call Church different names but it is the same whatever we call it. I love all Hubers.

Thanks very much.

 


drpastorcarlotta profile image

drpastorcarlotta 7 years ago from BREAKOUT MINISTRIES, INC. KC

Wonderful Hub!!! Well written!!! Blessings!!


bjspivey-rivers profile image

bjspivey-rivers 6 years ago

This is a great teaching. I love this Psalm and have written about it also. Thanks for your insights!


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 6 years ago from Midwest USA Author

Wow! Looks like I've been away from here WAY too long!! I hope this Psalm works wonders in the hearts of men; for without it, all life is futile! The fear of God is really NOT a fear at all. It is welcome!


yolanda yvette profile image

yolanda yvette 6 years ago

This is simply, amazing....


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 5 years ago from Midwest USA Author

Thanks Yolanda! I am glad you dropped by! Psalm One, no matter how many times you read and reflect, is always a treasure!

Blessings!

RJ

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