Posts Tagged ‘Psalm 1:1-2’

Reflections on Psalm 1

October 21, 2017

Psalm 40--8

The Verse of the Day for October 21, 2017 comes from Psalm 40:8 in the King James Version:

I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.

In reflecting on this verse, my mind immediately went to the First Psalm, the first passage of scripture I ever committed to memory when I was in grade school, more than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school.” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood and told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day.

Psalm 40:8 echoes the sentiments expressed in the opening verses of the First Psalm:

Psalm 1:1-2:

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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

In the years that have transpired since the first time I recited the passage, I have come to identify with the man so described as “blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable” in the Amplified Bible:

I express my identification with this individual in the following poetic self-portrait:

Talk about a Man

Psalm 1

 

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

At first I couldn’t, but now I see God’s master plan.

 

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

I’m all the time thinking about it—day and night.

 

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

By the still waters the Good Shepherd leads his sheep.

 

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

I have been so blessed since you can remember when.

 

The Word of God soothes my soul like a healing balm.

I’m the man they talking about in that First Psalm.

Now that I think about it, that experience occurred around the same time as another related experience when I asked if I could “join the church.” In order to become a member of the church, you had to be at least twelve years old.  Shortly after turning twelve, on a bright and sunny Sunday morning, I walked down the aisle at Carter Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal (C.M.E.) Church and shook the minister’s hand, but I recognized, even then, that sometime significant had happened that was more than just a formality.

In the Jewish tradition there is a rite of passage called the bar mitzvah for young men and the bat mitzvah, for young girls. The term literally means “son/daughter of the commandment.” This religious initiation ceremony is conducted for a Jewish boy who has reached the age of 13 and is regarded as ready to observe religious precepts and thus eligible to take part in public worship.

Accepting Jesus Christ as my savior and my expressing my desire to “join the Church,” happened about the same time which I feel may have represented a kind of rite of passage similar to the bar mitzvah. Certainly, I did not realize what may have occurred at the time, but I wanted to share some of my thoughts while reflecting on the First Psalm and its significance in my life.

Today’s post concludes with a musical version of this beautiful psalm by the Sons of Korah:

Psalm 1: Learning by heart

November 19, 2016

Psalm 1--3

In reflecting on the Verse of the Day for November 19, 2016, an expression also came to mind that I generally associate with this particular passage, and so once again we have the Verse of the Day along with the Word or Phrase for the Day Combo.

This familiar passage opens one of my favorite psalms:

Psalm 1: 1-2 (NKJV):

[BOOK ONE: Psalms 1—41] [The Way of the Righteous and the End of the Ungodly] Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night.

The First Psalm is especially meaningful to me in that it is the first passage of scripture that I “learned by heart.” We, thus, introduce the “Phrase of the Day.” I recall committing the entire psalm to memory in the mid-fifties, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school.” I vividly remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood in a kind of impromptu Vacation Bible School in her home, which was located behind “Little’s Funeral Parlor.” She told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still “know by heart” to this day.

Here is the entire psalm in the King James Version which I committed to memory:

1 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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.

Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

Recently I came across a discussion of idioms on EnglishStackExchange.com where someone asked if “learn by heart” and “learn by rote” meant the same. In making the distinction between these two expressions, one writer commented that “[to] go over many times is the process of ‘rote learning’; I learned it by heart is the effect it produced or the quality of learning that was acquired.”  Learning by heart means to learn something so well that it can be written or recited without thinking; to memorize something.

Another writer went on to say: “Learning by heart — which may be somewhat of a dying tradition — means to learn something so deeply that it becomes part of our core: it fills us; it changes us. The difference might be less in technique than in what we do with the acquired information.”

In the years that have transpired since the first time I recited the passage, I have come to identify with the man so described as “blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable” in the Amplified Bible:

In a previous blog post I express my identification with this individual in the following poetic self-portrait:

Talk about a Man

Psalm 1

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

At first I couldn’t, but now I see God’s master plan.

 

 

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

I’m all the time thinking about it—day and night.

 

 

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

By the still waters the Good Shepherd leads his sheep.

 

 

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

I been truly blessed since I can remember when.

 

 

The Word of God soothes my soul like a healing balm.

I’m the man they talking about in that First Psalm.

In thinking about the phrase “to learn by heart,” I recall another related verse which was the first verse in a set of 25 scripture memory cards that I later committed to memory as well:

Psalm 119:11 (NKJV):

11 Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You.

Today, more than 60 years have passed since I first encountered the First Psalm in all of its beauty and learned it by heart. Indeed, the Word of God remains deeply implanted within me.

Listen to a musical version of this beautiful psalm offered by the Sons of Korah:

Psalm 1: Talk about a man

November 19, 2015

Psalm_1-1

Posted a year ago on this date, the following blog entry has been modified and re-posted below:

The Verse of the Day for November 19, 2015 provides a magnificent description of the man of God spoken of in the first two verses of the First Psalm, one of my favorite psalms:

Psalm 1: 1-2 (NLT):

[Book one (Psalms 1–41)] [Psalm 1] Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with mockers. But they delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night.

When I think of the First Psalm, I recall the first passage of scripture that I ever committed to memory. More than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school,” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood in a kind of impromptu Vacation Bible School in her home, which was located behind “Little’s Funeral Parlor.” She told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day.

Here is the entire psalm in the King James Version which I committed to memory:

Psalm 1

1 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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.

Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

In the years that have transpired since the first time I recited the passage, I have come to identify with the man so described as “blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable” in the Amplified Bible:

I express my identification with this individual in the following poetic self-portrait:

Talk about a Man

Psalm 1

 

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

Talk about a man that show is blessed—I’m the man.

At first I couldn’t, but now I see God’s master plan.

 

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

To study the Word of Life show is my delight.

I’m all the time thinking about it—day and night.

 

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

Planted by the rivers of water, my roots reach deep.

By the still waters the Good Shepherd leads his sheep.

 

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

I have been so blessed since I can remember when.

 

The Word of God soothes my soul like a healing balm.

I’m the man they talking about in that First Psalm.

Now that I think about it, that experience occurred around the same time as another related experience when I asked if I could “join the church.” In order to become a member of the church, you had to be at least twelve years old. Shortly after turning twelve, on a bright and sunny Sunday morning, I walked down the aisle at Carter Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal (C.M.E.) Church and shook the minister’s hand, but I recognized, even then, that sometime significant had happened that was more than just a formality.

In the Jewish tradition there is a rite of passage called the bar mitzvah for young men and the bat mitzvah, for young girls. The term literally means “son/daughter of the commandment.” This religious initiation ceremony is conducted for a Jewish boy who has reached the age of 13 and is regarded as ready to observe religious precepts and thus eligible to take part in public worship.

Accepting Jesus Christ as my savior and my expressing my desire to “join the Church,” happened about the same time which I feel may have represented a kind of rite of passage similar to the bar mitzvah; thus have been some of my thoughts while reflecting on the First Psalm and its significance in my life.

Listen to a musical version of this beautiful psalm offered by the Sons of Korah:

 

To find, to know, to do the will of God

October 21, 2015

Psalm 40--8

The Verse of the Day for October 21, 2015 is found in Psalm 40:8 (NLT):

I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart.”

Two days ago I posted a blog entry entitled “Take Delight in the Lord” and made reference to Psalm 40:8 in the Amplified Bible:

I delight to do Your will, O my God; yes, Your law is within my heart.

In another previous blog entry on today’s Verse of the Day, I offered the following remarks which have been revised and expanded:

The Verse of the Day for October 21, 2015, in the Amplified Bible brings to mind the First Psalm, the first passage of scripture that I ever committed to memory when I was in grade school, more than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school.” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood and told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day. Psalm 40:8 brought to mind Psalm 1:1-2 from the King James, the version that I chose to memorize:

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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

Here is a reading of Psalm 1 in Hebrew with English subtitles:

Psalm 1 is set to music in this selection from Kim Hill:

Another related scripture from the Book of Psalms is Psalm 119:11, a special verse that I committed to memory by composing a melody to facilitate memorizing the scripture, the first of a long series of scripture memory songs.

Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

Here is a similar Bible Memory Verse for Kids for Psalm 119:11 by Shannon Linville.

Another related scripture used in the blog “Take delight in the Lord” also comes from Psalm 143:10 in the Amplified Bible:

Teach me to do Your will [so that I may please You],
For You are my God;
Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.

Since a child, I have been endeavoring to discover the will of God for my life, as expressed in this poem:

The Will of God

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Albert Schweitzer

 

My food is to do the will of Him who sent me,

and to finish His work.

John 4:34 [NKJV]

                                                

To unearth at last the world’s most priceless treasure

And gaze upon the splendor of God’s sovereignty

Is to savor joy unspeakable beyond measure:

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know intimacy beyond the highest degree,

A confident assurance when I acknowledge

And embrace the path, the destiny, prepared for me:

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To live life, knowing I am covered by the Blood

Is to walk with no regret, never to lament,

For all decisions work together for the good:

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Guided and protected by the Shepherd’s staff and rod,

I rejoice to find, to know and do the will of God.

Darius Brooks offers a passionate rendition of “Your Will,” one of my favorite songs focusing on the will of God:

Psalm 1: Talk about a man

November 19, 2014

Psalm_1-1

The Verse of the Day for November 19, 2014 provides a magnificent description of the man of God spoken of in the first two verses of in the First Psalm, one of my favorite psalms:

Psalm 1: 1-2 (NIV):

Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night..

When I think of the First Psalm, I recall the first passage of scripture I ever committed to memory. More than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school,” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood in a kind of impromptu Vacation Bible School in her home, which was located behind “Little’s “Funeral Parlor.” She told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day.

In the years that have transpired since the first time I recited the passage, I have come to identify with the man so described as “blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable” in the Amplified Bible:

I express my identification with this individual in the following poetic self-portrait:

Talk about a Man

Psalm 1

 

Talk about a man that show is blessed—you’re the man.

Talk about a man that show is blessed—you’re the man.

At first you couldn’t, but now you see God’s master plan.

To study the Word of Life show is your delight.

To study the Word of Life show is your delight.

You’re all the time thinking about it—day and night.

Planted by the rivers of water, your roots reach deep.

Planted by the rivers of water, your roots reach deep.

By the still waters the Good Shepherd leads his sheep.

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

In God all His promises are yes and amen.

You have been so blessed since you can remember when.

The Word of God soothes your soul like a healing balm.

You’re the man they talking about in that First Psalm.

Now that I think about it, that experience occurred around the same time as another related experience when I asked if I could “join the church.” In order to become a member of the church, you had to be at least twelve years old. Shortly after turning twelve, on a bright and sunny Sunday morning, I walked down the aisle at Carter Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal (C.M.E.) Church and shook the minister’s hand, but I recognized, even then, that sometime significant had happened that was more than just a formality.

In the Jewish tradition there is a rite of passage called the bar mitzvah for young men and the bat mitzvah, for young girls. The term literally means “son/daughter of the commandment.” This religious initiation ceremony is conducted for a Jewish boy who has reached the age of 13 and is regarded as ready to observe religious precepts and thus eligible to take part in public worship.

Accepting Jesus Christ as my savior and my expressing my desire to “join the Church,” happened about the same time which I feel may have represented a kind of rite of passage similar to the bar mitzvah, thus have been some of my thoughts while reflecting on the First Psalm and its significance in my life.

Listen to a musical version of this beautiful psalm offered by Kim Hill.

I delight to do your will

October 21, 2014

Psalm 40--8The Verse of the Day for October 21, 2014 is found in Psalm 40:8 in the Amplified Bible:

I delight to do Your will, O my God; yes, Your law is within my heart.

In reflecting on the Verse of the Day, my mind immediately went to the First Psalm, the first passage of scripture that I ever committed to memory when I was in grade school, more than 60 years ago, way back in the day, in what we called “junior high school.” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood and told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day. Psalm 40:8 brought to mind Psalm 1:1-2:

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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

Here is a reading of Psalm 1 in Hebrew with English subtitles:

Psalm 1 is set to music in this selection from Kim Hill:

The opening phrase of the Verse of the Day, “I delight to do your will” brings to mind the unusual circumstances of the first poem that I ever wrote. This rather accidental (providential) occurrence took place during my first year in college in my freshman composition class when I was asked to write a response to this prompt:”May I Tell You What Delights Me?” I made a list of things that brought me pleasure, and when I read what I had written to the class, my professor described it as poetry. Years later I realized that I had written a free-verse, catalog poem, in the style of Walt Whitman. Near the top of the list of sources of delight for me was the Psalms of David. Indeed, I concur with the Psalmist who proclaims his delight in doing the will of God, a subject that inspired this poem:

The Will of God

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Albert Schweitzer

 

My food is to do the will of Him who sent me,

and to finish His work.

John 4:34 [NKJV]

                                                

To unearth at last the world’s most priceless treasure

And gaze upon the splendor of God’s sovereignty

Is to savor joy unspeakable beyond measure:

To find the will of God is the greatest discovery.

To know intimacy beyond the highest degree,

A confident assurance when I acknowledge

And embrace the path, the destiny, prepared for me:

To know the will of God is the greatest knowledge.

To live life, knowing I am covered by the Blood

Is to walk with no regret, never to lament,

For all decisions work together for the good:

To do the will of God is the greatest achievement.

Guided and protected by the Shepherd’s staff and rod,

I rejoice to find, to know and do the will of God.

Monique Walker and the Love Fellowship Choir under the direction of Hezekiah Walker offer “The Will of God”:

Psalm 1: The first word

November 19, 2013

Psalm 1 3

The Verse of the Day for November 19, 2013, is found in the first two verses of the First Psalm:

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. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

When I think of the First Psalm, I recall the first passage of scripture I ever committed to memory. More than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school,” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood and told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day.

Listen to the musical accompaniment, as you read the Psalm 1 in the King James Version, the version which I memorized:

About seven years ago, Apostle John Tetsola commented about the power of “The First Word” and his remarks inspired this poem which makes reference to the First Psalm, the “First Word” for me:

The First Word                                    

When you’re in a difficult situation,

go back to ‘the first word.’ It still works.

Apostle John Tetsola

Though only a child, I heard the word of the Lord.

Just like Samuel, I clearly heard God speak to me:

I still remember the power of “the first word.”

The desire to read and to learn by heart God’s Word:

Planted deep within my soul seeds of destiny.

Though only a child, I heard the word of the Lord.

Early years of famine and drought God has restored.

My Shepherd ever sets a table before me.

I still remember the power of “the first word.”

From an early age God became my shield and sword,

As the Psalms enflamed a passion for poetry.

Though only a child, I heard the word of the Lord.

The sound words of the First Psalm could not be ignored:

“Planted by the rivers of waters, like a tree. . .”

I still remember the power of “the first word.”

Striving toward the finish, ever pressing forward,

I now fondly recall glimpses of God’s glory.

Though only a child, I heard the word of the Lord:

I still remember the power of “the first word.”

Kim Hill offers this musical rendering of the First Psalm:

The Verse of the Day floods my mind with fond memories of the power of “the First Word.”

Psalm 40:8 and related verses with song

October 21, 2013

Psalm_40-8

In reflecting on the Verse of the Day for October 21, 2013, my mind immediately went to the First Psalm, the first passage of scripture that I ever committed to memory when I was in grade school, more than 60 years ago, back in the day, in what we called “junior high school.” I remember that Mrs. Little, the local undertaker’s wife, gathered kids from the neighborhood and told us to memorize Psalm 1, which I did and still recall by heart to this day. Psalm 40:8 brought to mind Psalm 1:1-2:

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.

But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

Here is a reading of Psalm 1 in Hebrew with English subtitles:

Psalm 1 is set to music in this selection from Kim Hill:

Another related scripture from the Book of Psalms is Psalm 119:11, a special verse that I committed to memory by composing a melody to facilitate memorizing the scripture, the first of a long series of scripture memory songs.

Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

Here is a similar Bible Memory Verse for Kids for Psalm 119:11 by Shannon Linville.

A great way to begin the day is with a couple of verses set to music from the Psalms.