Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Psalm 1:1 says, "Blessed is the man who walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful." The English word "blessed" is almost always understood as one benefiting from the good will of others. In Numbers 6:22-27, the Lord told Moses to pray for Israel and ask Him that Israel would be blessed, would be kept, would find favor and receive God's grace, and would receive God's peace. Jesus told His disciples to be a blessing to those who cursed them (Matt. 5:44). They were to love their enemies, and show it by their words and actions.

However, in the context of this verse, "Blessed" means happy. The Psalmist is telling his readers that the way to be happy is to avoid some things. Believers will be happier if they take the advice of wise Christians on which path they should take. Believers will be happier if they spend time with other believers. Believers will be happier if they sit and fellowship with those who have a positive attitude and who spend their time encouraging others. This use of the word is found in Matthew 5:3-11, but He clarifies His meaning in verse twelve. It is when we are persecuted for our faith in Jesus Christ that we are to rejoice or be happy. But when the car breaks down, the kids are rebellious, money runs out, etc., we are allowed to be sad. Paul said we were to rejoice and weep with others (Rom. 12:15). Solomon said there was a time when each was appropriate (Eccl. 3:4). For years I felt guilty because I wasn't like the "TV Christians" who are always saying God wants us to be rich, healthy, and full of joy. But the Spirit of God has reminded me in my lowest times that "Jesus wept" (Jn. 11:35).

Christians are to walk in the Spirit (Gal. 5:16, 25). Christians are to stand and fight when Satan tries to defeat us (Eph. 6:10-17). Paul says we are to stand and face the enemy and not retreat; our armor is protecting our front side, not our back side. James 4:7 tells us to resist the devil and he will be forced to flee. Jesus told His disciples that the gates of hell could not withstand the advance of the Church (Matt. 16:18). Satan's gates are meant to keep the Gospel from rescuing those souls who are still being deceived by him. We are not only supposed to withstand him, we are to attack him. Jesus said for us to go into all the world and make disciples out of those still belonging to Satan (if you don't belong to Jesus, you belong to Satan).

Psalm 1:1 reminds me of my journey in Christ. When I was a young man, I walked about spreading the Gospel. When I got a little older, I would stand in the pulpit or before Bible classes. Now that my health has rendered me unable to stand very long, I sit at this computer for hours and write to those whom the Spirit leads to read my witness. But no matter whether we are able to walk, stand, or merely sit, we are to "charge the gates of hell" using every ounce of strength and whatever weapons we have. So my charge to you is: CHARGE!

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