Blessed Is The Man

Psalm 1 and 2 are both the introduction to the book of Psalms as well as the conclusion. They combine to reveal the outcome of a person who allows God’s Word to shape their prayers and life.

Psalm 1 begins with the phrase, “Blessed is the man who…”  The first thing about the blessed man is seen what he has said “no” to. He has seen that a person cannot serve God and the world; the two are opposites. The ways of God are not the ways of man.

The ways of man are seen in the downward progression of first listening, “…does not walk in the counsel of the ungodly,” then in keeping company with, “…nor stands in the way of sinners,” then in sharing the influence that has been received and reinforced by that company, “nor sits in the seat of the scoffers.” That way has been rejected by the blessed man because God’s way has been chosen.

God’s way begins with His Word. “But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night.”  The delight he has developed in God’s Word is the result of meditating on it. At first God’s Word seems hard to understand. Understanding does not come from more and more study, it comes from the Holy Spirit. He and He alone reveals the truth and delight of His Word. Meditation on the Word means asking the Holy Spirit over and over, as the Word is mulled on over and over, for light and meaning.

The Hebrew word for “delight” is hapes (pronounced hop-is) and means to feel great favor and pleasure in something because of its intrinsic qualities. It is mostly used in the Old Testament of God and the “delight” He has for various things. For example in 1 Samuel 15:22 when Samuel told Saul that God has greater delight in obedience than in sacrifice. This means that the delight you develop for God’s Word actually comes from His Holy Spirit in you. He delights in His own Word and shares that delight with you!

The blessed man is described “…like a tree, planted by the steams of water,” A tree that is planted by the steams of water speaks of intentional planting. God plants us in His Word. His will is that we stay in His Word with the Holy Spirit teaching us all the days of our lives.

When you stay in the Word, the Word grows in you and, like a tree, produces leaves and fruit. Leaves and fruit are the only two things a tree produces. Without leaves and fruit a tree is just firewood.

The first one is “…that yields fruit in its season,” The fruit that the Word produces is the glory of God. God designed our lives to glorify Him and Him alone. The way that He designed this to take place is by being planted in His Word. His will and ways have not changed since the beginning. Every occasion and situation in life is another opportunity for the glorious light of God’s characteristics to shine forth from your life, if you are planted in His Word. Whether it is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness…it all reveals God’s glory.

The other thing is tree produces is leaves. The promise of God for the blessed man is “…and its leaf does not wither,” So, what are the leaves of our lives in Christ? There are two references to the leaves of the Tree of Life, Ezekiel 47:12 and Revelation 22:1-2. The Ezekiel reference describes the Tree of Life during the Millennium (the thousand-year reign of Christ on earth following the battle of Armageddon in Revelation 20:1-6), while the Revelation reference describes the Tree of Life in the New Heaven and Earth following the Great While Throne judgment.

In both passages it describes the purpose of the leaves as healing for the nations. One thing we all know about the shade of a tree; it is refreshing. To sit under the shade of a great tree is restful whether there is a hammock involved or not!

The promise of God for the blessed man is that his life will always be an invitation to others for them to enjoy the rest and refreshment of God in his life. There is something about just being around someone who is planted in the Word. It is refreshing just to be near and to listen to someone like that.

Psalm 1 sums up the blessed man by saying “…in all that he does, he prospers.”The Hebrew word “prospers” is tsalock (pronounced tsa-lock), which means to complete, to triumph, to be strong, to overcome. It does not mean that you will have an abundance of things; this is the “American” definition of prosperity. Prosperity in the Bible is more related to being faithful than the accumulation of things or having it easy. Being prosperous, according to God’s definition, means that you will rise above every circumstance in your life with God-honoring and Christ-exalting glory!

Be sure that you stay in God’s Word, meditating in it, growing by it, and being fully aware of God’s beautiful purposes being carried through to fullness by it. You will be blessed just like God designed from the very beginning.


©2012 Bubba Stahl. Originally posted on Nov 14, on Bubba Stahl’s Blog.