You have two choices.
Everyone has two choices, but it doesn’t seem so. It seems that the choices are infinite.
This is world is so large and so complex that it seems that you can choose from a never ending variety. That’s not the case. In reality you get to make two and only two choices. Those choices are life changing and life determining. Yesterday, I mentioned that the choices are God or self.
Psalm 1 seems to have been placed exactly in this position as the first of the psalms to make us struggle with how we will live our lives. These brief verses point us to the two ways. The structure of the psalm itself points to these ways. The first and last words of the psalm emphasize this struggle and decision. The first word is blessed. This word describes those who love God and seek His ways. The last word is perish. This word describes those who reject God and live for self.
How does a person who is blessed live? The psalmist gives three main ways.
First, the blessed person has made a conscious decision to turn from sin and thus to turn toward God (Psalm 1:1-3). This decision is a form of repentance. He deliberately chooses to turn away from sin. He does this in three ways.
(1) He chooses not to entertain sin in his life in any form (he does not walk in the counsel of the wicked). This might refer to his thought life. As soon as an ungodly thought occurs, he quickly dispenses with it or repents of it. (2) He does not linger with those who are doing evil (he does not stand among sinners). (3) He is not settled among rebellious people (he does not sit among scoffers).
This verse seems to describe a progression of sin and rebellion. If you stop this transgression in its tracks (in your mind), you are more likely to live the life that pleases God.
Second, the godly person is immersed in God’s ways and God’s teaching. He meditates on God’s law day and night. Day and night means that this is a way of life. God’s Word helps keep the person from sin.
Third, Psalm 1:3 describes the consequence of rejecting of evil (what he doesn’t do–the negative) and choosing good (the positive).
Therefore, the person is blessed by rejecting evil and choosing good (that is, God).
What constitutes this blessing?
“He is like a tree planted by streams of water, that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not whither. In all that he does he prospers” (Psalm 1:3).
Tomorrow: The wrong way.