Praying and Meditating through Psalms
For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish
~ Psalm 1:6, KJV ~
Much of our modern culture appears to be wallowing in a defeatist and pessimistic attitude. This is apparently evident by many protests, marches, violence, cynicism, political divisiveness, and even religious intolerance. Sadly, much of this appears to come from so-called Christian believers. There is a serious spirit of contention that has permeated our social consciousness. Yet, scripture stands true against the seemingly growing darkness and cancerous tumor of contention.
Scripture also teaches us of only two paths in our mortal existence. These two paths are eloquently spoken of in Psalms 1:1-6. One is the path of the righteous. The second path is that of those who are condemned to perish due to their unrighteousness.
Blessed or Cursed are you?
Psalm 1:1 opens up with the Hebrew ashrey for blessed. This expression gives us insight in the sense of happiness, joy, and sense of fulfillment one experiences through a genuine Christian Faith. This comes from our deep and authentic trust in our Heavenly Father as we walk in obedience to His sovereign and divine will. Following this statement are three negative and progressive characteristic traits of the unrighteous. We are blessed when we:
- Do not walk in the counsel of the ungodly
- Stand in the way of sinners
- Sit in the seat of the scornful
When we walk in the counsel of the ungodly – we are heeding the advice of those who are not walking in obedience. Christ taught us “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” (Matthew 7:14, KJV). For many of us, we have given ourselves over to the advice and counsel of those whom we have chosen to follow. As we give into the advice of society, we naturally move to where we stand in the way of sinners.
There are two ways we may find ourselves standing in the way of sinners. The first regards our choice to heed the advice of the world and begin to walk in disobedience and unrighteousness. The other is where we impede the work of God’s glory and divine grace by preventing those to come to the fountain of living waters and partake of the fruit of the Tree of Life.
And as we progress from following the counsel of the unrighteous. Progress from standing in the way of the sinners. We inevitably place ourselves upon the sit with the scornful. These are the people who have developed a hatred for God. A hatred toward their fellow brothers and sisters. They have fully succumbed to the spirit of contention and operate out of sheer anger. These are those who stand in judgment. They preach tolerance while proclaiming intolerance toward the sons and daughters of God’s Kingdom. Many of whom sit in the pews and chairs on Sunday mornings.
Planted and Nourished by god’s divine truth
As we walk in obedience to God. Following the path and example of our savior, Jesus Christ. We surrender ourselves over to personal revelation through our studying and meditating of God’s teachings and instructions. The image here shows us that we are like a tree planted by the rivers of water. The image continues to share the divine characteristics of those who seek Heavenly Father through prayer and meditation:
- Grows in strength and rooted in God’s truths and teachings
- Sustained by personal revelation and growing from faith to faith
- Bearing fruit in due season
- Our testimony and faith does not wither
- We are continually blessed and prosper according to God’s will and good pleasure
Today, we do well to focus on the teachings of our Heavenly Father. Work to walk in faithful obedience to His divine and righteous council. Stand firm on the truth of His personal revelation and will for our lives. Sit with those who are working out their faith with fear and trembling and fighting the good fight (See, Philippians 2:12 and 1 Timothy 6:12, KJV).
the path of the unrighteous is judgment and condemnation
Contrasting the way of the righteous – Psalm 1:4-5 declares the consequences of living in disobedience before God. Here, the chaff refers to the useless part of the wheat when it is processed through threshing, winnowing, or riddling. It is the fruitless ideas, wicked council, and false teachings and doctrines. There is no inherent value and is merely refuse.
Because the unrighteous and disobedient are compared to chaff, they are not able to withstand the slightest breeze (See, Ephesians 4:14, KJV). This is apparently due to the craftiness and manipulation that occurs. In the end, they are driven away.
Not only are they driven by every whim of doctrine, craftiness of man, and the unrighteous council. Those who follow the path that is broad and wide (See, Matthew 7:13) lead to a way that is destructive. They are not able to stand the judgments that come. And eventually they will be separated out of the congregation of the righteous (See, Matthew 3:12) when the righteous is sifted like wheat (See, Luke 22:31).
Chose the strait and narrow or the broad path
Our mortality is not a passive game where we sit in the stands and watch. We make choices every day that impact our lives. These choices come down to the way we think, how those thoughts evoke emotions, and those emotions evoke behaviors. Within our human volition we are choosing to follow Christ in obedience to God’s divine will and commandments to receive the reward of eternal life – o,r follow the path that leads to destruction where we are separated and our lives wither away because of how useless and worthless it is.
~ Prayer and Meditation ~
Heavenly Father, bring to my awareness those areas where I lack in my faith. You know my path and are graceful in forgiving me of my transgressions. As I submit myself to you daily, guide me through the Holy Spirit to keep me in the way of the Righteous. Assist me in recognizing the true path and strengthen me as I meditate upon your words, your messages, your teachings, and your instructions. In Jesus Christ’s name – Amen.
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