January 7, 2014.
If you have been following along so far, I hope this journey has been profitable so far and I hope it continues to bless you and I both as we continue along. I have realized that this project is going to take a lot more time than I expected, as I pour in quite a bit of time to each of these in effort to do the word justice, though I know that my words will always come up short when describing the word of God. Though it will be difficult, I trust in the Lord that He will provide both you and I with the strength and stamina to get through it as we will be drawing close to Him (ref. James 4:8). If you are just now joining, you still can easily catch up starting with the first reading here. I have changed up the format some and I am continuing to tweak it, so if you have any feedback, please let me know how you like it. Each day might have a slight different format depending on the passage style. May the Lord of Heaven and Earth bless your soul and sustain you by His mighty hand.
Daily Reading: Psalm 1-2.
The book of Psalms is a collection of 150 different psalms collected over the span of many years. Many of the psalms are attributed to King David, but there are other authors, known and unknown. The book of Psalms is actually split into five different books or sections, likely to reflect the five books of the Law (Genesis-Deuteronomy). Many of the psalms have a header line that gives some detail or note on how the psalm was to be preformed, much like a what performance note on a piece of music serves to do for a musician today. There are many Messianic prophecies made in the Psalms. Just like we use rhyme today in poetry, Hebrew poetry would use parallelism and repetition and these techniques can be seen throughout the psalms. The psalms held a high place in the eyes of both Jews and early Christians, as they still play an integral role in our faith today.
Highlights and Key Concepts.
1. Bad company corrupts good morals (v. 1-4): The majority of this psalm is devoted to the teaching that the one who walks in the counsel of the Lord and abides in the law day and night rather than surrounding himself with unrighteous people is blessed, for the counsel of the wicked and the influence of sinners will surely lead him astray. Yet clinging to the law of the Lord, he will be planted with the roots of a tree, prospering in whatever he does. The wicked on the other hand have no roots and will be blown away with the wind (v. 4). Paul makes a couple of statements that could echo this concept, warning that “a little leaven leavens the whole lump” and “bad company ruins good morals” (see I Corinthians 5:6, 15:32). The point that both the Psalmist and Paul are trying to make is that surrounding yourself with people who are unrighteous will more than likely lead you into unrighteousness, whereas walking in the law of the Lord and clinging to His word will lead you into righteousness.
2. Righteousness will prevail (v. 5-6): As somewhat of a continuation of the point, it is shown that the unrighteous will not be able to stand in judgment from the Almighty, for He defines righteousness and cannot be with unrighteousness. In the end, the way of the wicked will perish. Righteousness and sin do not mix.
1. Messianic Prophecy: One doesn’t have to read too far into the book of Psalms to find the first Messianic prophecy. In the second psalm, there are many references made to the coming Messiah, perhaps the most obvious in verse 7 where the Lord says “You are my Son; today I have begotten you,” a phrase that is cited in Acts 13:33 and Hebrews 1:5, 5:5. Before Christ came to this earth (and even perhaps afterwards), some Jewish tradition held that there were to be two different Messiahs, for the prophecy they read in their scriptures seemed to paint two different pictures of the Christ. There was the picture of a strong ruler coming to defeat Israel’s enemies, which can be gleamed from this second psalm, but then the other picture of a suffering servant, such as the prophecy in Isaiah 53. Before Christ came, it was hard for people to reconcile these two pictures. But Christ did just that, suffering on our behalf, but then raising to defeat sin and death, and to sit on the spiritual throne forever.
2. Those against God do not stand a chance: The second psalm gives a strong warning to kings and rulers, that they may be wise and serve the Lord with fear, giving respect to the Son, lest they be destroyed. Verse four says that the Lord laughs at those who think they can stand against Him, for they do not stand a chance. The righteous will find refuge in the Lord, but any who do not serve Him, but take counsel together against His Anointed will not prevail. They have no chance.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Job 1-2.
All praise to Him who reigns above.