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Showing posts from May, 2008

Thoughts on Psalm 1: Things the Blessed Man Refuses To Do

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"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful." (Psalm 1)

The Bible starts with pointing out what the blessed man refuses to do. So many today do not like Bible preaching because this kind of preaching always points out error and people do not want to be corrected. As a result, some Christians foolishly ask an audience with the preacher to persuade him to "tone it down" or to "focus on the positives." It is amazing to see, here and in other portions of Scripture, that God's ways and Word is directly opposite of man's ways. John Phillips in his excellent commentary work on Psalms points out that man's philosophy starts with "The Power of Positive Thinking" but God starts with "The Power of Negative Thinking." I thought John's observation was right on.
To start with, the blessed man refuses to listen to advice which stems from …

Thoughts on Psalm 1: Blessedness is qualified happiness

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"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful." (Psalm 1:1)

While it is true that happiness can be inserted in the place of the word blessed in the text, we must be careful to qualify the word happiness. Many who enjoy the world's sinful pleasures do so because it does bring happiness to them, however, it doesn't go to say that they are blessed. There is then a great gulf fixed between the broad and generic use of the word happy and the specific use of the word bless, or blessed. Jay Adams in his book on counseling observes that happiness relates to happening. Obviously, we may readily attest to that as a true statement. When things are happening, we are happy, and when things aren't happening, then in a way, we aren't happy.
But what about "blessings?" First, what do we mean by "blessing?" Second, where do they stem from? A blessing is a goodn…