Scripture

Psalm 1 and 2

Psalm 1

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.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
    whatever they do prospers.

Not so the wicked!
    They are like chaff
    that the wind blows away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
    nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.

For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
    but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.

 

Psalm 2

Why do the nations conspire
    and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth rise up
    and the rulers band together
    against the Lord and against his anointed, saying,
“Let us break their chains
    and throw off their shackles.”

The One enthroned in heaven laughs;
    the Lord scoffs at them.
He rebukes them in his anger
    and terrifies them in his wrath, saying,
“I have installed my king
    on Zion, my holy mountain.”

I will proclaim the Lord’s decree:

He said to me, “You are my son;
    today I have become your father.
Ask me,
    and I will make the nations your inheritance,
    the ends of the earth your possession.
You will break them with a rod of iron;
    you will dash them to pieces like pottery.”

10 Therefore, you kings, be wise;
    be warned, you rulers of the earth.
11 Serve the Lord with fear
    and celebrate his rule with trembling.
12 Kiss his son, or he will be angry
    and your way will lead to your destruction,
for his wrath can flare up in a moment.
    Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Reflection

For the next few weeks, we are going to take a journey through the Psalms. This collection of 150 songs, poems and prayers can provide hope, healing, a new start, and place of respite. These words were written in joy, sorrow, fear, and a myriad of other human emotions. They are poetic, rather than narrative, not meant to be taken literally, but as metaphor. They should be read more like a journal than a history book. And beyond reading them, the Psalms lend themselves to becoming prayers. You can easily pray through the lines of a Psalm. You can write them out and make them your own laments, celebrations, or petitions before God.

 

As we begin to look at the Psalms, remember that this is a collection of writings. They were written by a variety of authors, then assembled and edited in this order. Some have titles, some do not. Some are attributed to particular authors, including King David, and others are dedicated or in honor of someone.

 

I believe Psalms 1 and 2 were set at the beginning for a reason. They both lay the groundwork for reading the rest. Psalm 1 reminds us that continual study and reflection on the scriptures is the path to living fully as God intends. And Psalm 2 provides assurance that our future is secure, allowing us to live today with confidence.

 

Read through Psalms 1 and 2 today. Ask God to reveal something new to you. Let your mind wander through the lines. Jot down any things that jump out to you, and tomorrow we will begin to dive deep into this treasure of scriptural wealth.

Prayer

Dear Lord, let me hear your word anew. Guide me to open my heart and my soul to your ways. Please hear my prayers, my cries, my celebrations, and my worries. Be with me as I navigate this world. Show me how to use my whole life to serve you and your purposes. Thank you, Lord, for this day. Amen.