Psalms 1:1-2 ESV
“Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.”
We are blessed of God who do not walk in the counsel of the wicked. And who are the wicked? They are not just those who make no profession of faith in Jesus Christ, but they are also many who profess faith in Jesus Christ but who are still making sin their practice. They are the ungodly who live for themselves and not for God, for they live for the sinful pleasures of this world. Righteousness and obedience to the Lord are not their practice.
So we are not to take counsel from such people. We should not be seeking them out for wisdom to know what to do. We should not be looking to them for guidance. And we should not be following their advice. And we should not go in their ways, in the ways of sin, and in the ways of those who scoff at God and at the truth of the gospel and at those of us who serve the Lord Jesus with our lives. These should not be people of influence in our lives.
But our delight is to be in the Lord and in his commandments (New Covenant). He should be our counselor and guide and advisor. We should go to him and to his word to get our counsel and our direction for life. And we should feed our minds and our hearts with the truths of the Scriptures, for when we need counsel they will be in our minds. So it is critical that we learn Scriptures in their context so that we don’t come to wrong conclusions, too.
Psalms 1:3-4 ESV
“He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.”
When we get our counsel from God and not from other humans, then we can be assured that we are going in the right direction and that we are standing on solid ground. There should never be any question in our minds as to whether or not God’s counsel is good counsel to us. Now we need to make certain that we are hearing God correctly and that the counsel we believe we are receiving from him is from his word, but we should not doubt God’s counsel to us. We should believe him and follow him.
I find it interesting here that those of us who are getting our counsel from the Lord and from his word are described here as those who yield our fruit in season. Now, sometimes we see immediate fruit for our labors in the Lord, and other times we don’t see any fruit, not that the fruit is not there, but it is just not visible to us, especially if our ministry is online and what we are sharing is going out to people we don’t know. And sometimes people will respond much later. And we may never know in this life how God is using our obedience to him, but our rewards will be in heaven.
Now, when this says here that in all that we do we prosper – obviously in reference to the people who find their delight in the word of the Lord – it is not speaking of prosperity in the eyes of the world. It just means we will be successful, that we will have accomplished what we set out to do, which was to obey the Lord and his word in following him where he leads us and doing what he has called us to do. And so there will be fruit for our labor in the Lord in our own lives and in the lives of the people who are touched by it.
Psalms 1:5-6 ESV
“Therefore the wicked will 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 wicked will perish.”
And this really is the bottom line in all of this. If you are among the wicked, meaning that you are still making sin your practice, and righteousness and obedience to the Lord are not what you practice, then you will not stand in the judgment. You will hear Jesus say, “I never knew you. Depart from me you workers of lawlessness,” because you would not bow the knee to Almighty God, and you would not surrender your lives to Jesus Christ, but you stubbornly held on to your sin and you rebelled against the Lord.
You will not be numbered among the righteous who sought after God with all their hearts. You will not inherit eternal life with God. And you will not enter the kingdom of heaven because you gave lip service only to the Lord but you would not obey him (Matthew 7:21-23). So, you will perish in your sins because you refused to forsake your sins to follow Jesus Christ in obedience to his ways, which you were commanded that you must do if you want to have eternal life with God.
But the righteous – those of us who are living righteously, who have forsaken our sins, and who are following Jesus in obedience to his ways – we will be blessed with heaven as our eternal home. We will get to be with our Lord face to face for eternity in a place where there is no sin, but only righteousness and holiness, and where there is no pain or sorrow or sickness or death. And this is because Jesus is truly our only hope, and we did not put our trust in the gods of this world.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
By Jonathan Foreman
I give you my destiny
I’m giving you all of me
I want your symphony
Singing in all that I am
At the top of my lungs
I’m giving it my all
So, I lay my head back down
And I lift my hands and pray
To be only yours I pray
To be only yours I pray
To be only yours
I know now you’re my only hope
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