Blessed is the man….
It is so beautiful to be at the river side and enjoy the view of the vegetation along it. The trees seem to be evergreen, even when the rest of the trees on dry ground wither due to lack of enough moisture in the soil. Theirs is an ever present source of water form the river. This also means that the trees always bear fruit in their season.
And such is the picture there is in Psalm 1.
Happy is the man who doesnt involve himself in immoral ways of life. ‘Happy is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers…’ There is proggression from walk-stand-sit amongst the wicked, the sinners or the scoffers to mean, that whatever relationship there should be between sin and the man is none. There is a way in a sense a little gossip, or a little mischief here and there, or a small coarse joke towards a neighbour or a little pride or a little envy….spices up the day in man’s own judgement. It is naturally pleasurable to be in sin!
There is an instruction however to an otherwise lifestyle that defines a happy and blessed man. It involves delight (pleasure) and meditation in the Law of God. In the psalmists times that would have meant the Law of Moses, and in our time this takes us to the Word of God and the law of Christ that came to us through Christ’s death on the cross. It is only through Jesus that a man beholds righteousness. Man will naturally delight in sin, and there has to be an external ‘woo’ to instead find pleasure in the law of God.
The righteous man, just like the tree along the river yields fruit and prospers in all that he does. He yields fruit in obeying the Word of God, in exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit and teaching it to others. His steps are ordered by the cross upon his shoulders as he follows Christ. He prospers in benefiting the others by loving his neighbour and laying down his life for others (1st John 3:16). The bar of righteousness is way too high for human beings, that even in their best efforts its like filthy rags before God. And therefore a delight in being in Christ who stands to silence the accuser-the devil-of all our sinfulness.
Woe to the wicked (those without Christ) for theirs is a temporary reign and they will be swept away from the face of the earth like chaff that the wind drives away, and they will not stand in judgement, nor fellowship with the righteous ones on judgement day. It is better and more desirable for man to be amongst the righteous (thanks be to Christ) than to be in the way of the wicked.