[Home Group] Psalm 1 Wiersbe “BE Worshipful” Commentary


REF: “STUDY THIS” link @ https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalms+1&version=NLThttps://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalms+1&version=NLT

Be Worshipful (Psalms 1-89): Glorifying God for Who He Is (The BE Series Commentary) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1434767396/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_PI.6zbQX0EV8V

NOTE: This is a reference link/post for our small group who are Gibb through the Wiersbe Study of Psalms this fall season.

Psalm 1

The editor who placed this jewel at the beginning of the Psalms did a wise thing, for it points the way to blessing and warns about divine judgment. These are frequent themes in the Psalms. The images in this psalm would remind the reader of earlier teachings in the Old Testament. In Genesis, you find people walking with God (5:21, 24; 6:9; 17:1), the life-giving river (2:10-14), and trees and fruit (2:8-10). The law of the Lord connects the psalm with Exodus through Deuteronomy. Finding success by meditating on that law and obeying it reminds us of Joshua 1:8. The psalm presents two ways–the way of blessing and the way of judgment–which was the choice Israel had to make (Deut. 30:15, 19). Jesus used a similar image (Matt. 7:13-14). Bible history seems to be built around the concept of “two men”: the “first Adam” and the “last Adam” (Rom. 5; 1 Cor. 15:45)–Cain and Abel, Ishmael and Isaac, Esau and Jacob, David and Saul–and Bible history culminates in Christ and Antichrist. Two men, two ways, two destinies.

Psalm 1 is a wisdom psalm and focuses on God’s Word, God’s blessing on those who obey it and meditate on it, and God’s ultimate judgment on those who rebel. Wisdom psalms also wrestle with the problem of evil in the world and why God permits the prosperity of the wicked who reject His law. Other wisdom psalms include 10; 12; 15; 19; 32; 34; 37; 49–50; 52–53; 73; 78; 82; 91–92; 94; 111–112; 119; 127–128; 133; and 139. While this psalm depicts two ways, it actually describes three different persons and how they relate to the blessing of the Lord.

1. The Person Who Receives a Blessing from God (vv. 1-2). God’s covenant with Israel made it clear that He would bless their obedience and judge their disobedience (Lev. 26; Deut. 28). The word blessed is asher, the name of one of Jacob’s sons (Gen. 30:12-13). It’s plural: “O the happinesses! O the blessednesses!” The person described here met the conditions, and therefore God blessed him. If we want God’s blessing, we, too, must meet the conditions.

We must be directed by the Word (v. 1). Israel was a unique and separate people; they were among the other nations but not to be contaminated by them (Num. 23:9; Ex. 19:5-6; Deut. 32:8-10; 33:28). So it is with God’s people today: We are in the world but not of the world (John 17:11-17). We must beware of friendship with the world (James 4:4) that leads to being spotted by the world (James 1:27) and even loving the world (1 John 2:15-17). The result will be conforming to the world (Rom. 12:1-2) and, if we don’t repent, being condemned with the world (1 Cor. 11:32). Lot looked toward Sodom, pitched his tent toward Sodom, and soon moved into Sodom (Gen. 13:10-12; 14:12). Though he was a saved man (2 Peter 2:7-8), Lot lost all that he had when the Lord destroyed the cities of the plain (Gen. 18–19; 1 Cor. 3:11-23). We move into sin and disobedience gradually (see Prov. 4:14-15; 7:6ff.). If you follow the wrong counsel, then you will stand with the wrong companions and finally sit with the wrong crowd. When Jesus was arrested, Peter didn’t follow Christ’s counsel and flee from the garden (Matt. 26:31; John 16:32; 18:8) but followed and entered the high priest’s courtyard. There he stood with the enemy (John 18:15-18) and ultimately sat with them (Luke 22:55). The result was denying Christ three times. The “ungodly” are people who are willfully and persistently evil; “sinners” are those who miss the mark of God’s standards but who don’t care; the “scornful” make light of God’s laws and ridicule that which is sacred (see Prov. 1:22; 3:34; 21:24). When laughing at holy things and disobeying holy laws become entertainment, then people have reached a low level indeed.

We must be delighted with the Word (v. 2). We move from the negative in verse 1 to the positive. Delighting in the Word and meditating on the Word must go together (119:15-16, 23-24, 47-48, 77-78), for whatever we enjoy, we think about and pursue. “Meditate” in the Hebrew means “to mutter, to read in an undertone,” for Orthodox Jews speak as they read the Scriptures, meditate, and pray. God’s Word is in their mouth (Josh. 1:8). If we speak to the Lord about the Word, the Word will speak to us about the Lord. This is what is meant by “abiding in the Word” (1 John 2:14, 24). As God’s people, we should prefer God’s Word to food (119:103; Job 23:12; Jer. 15:17; Matt. 4:4; 1 Peter 2:2), sleep(119:55, 62, 147-148, 164), wealth (119:14, 72, 127, 162), and friends (119:23, 51, 95, 119). The way we treat the Bible is the way we treat Jesus Christ, for the Bible is His Word to us. The verbs in verse 1 are in the perfect tense and speak of a settled way of life, while in verse 2, “meditate” is the imperfect tense and speaks of constant practice: “He keeps meditating.”

2. The Person Who Is a Blessing (v. 3). God blesses us that we might be a blessing to others (Gen. 12:2). If the blessing stays with us, then the gifts become more important than the Giver, and this is idolatry. We are to become channels of God’s blessing to others. It’s a joy to receive a blessing but an even greater joy to be a blessing. “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).

The tree is a familiar image in Scripture, symbolizing both a kingdom (Ezek. 17:24; Dan. 4; Matt. 13:32) and an individual (52:8; 92:12-14; Prov. 11:30; Isa. 44:4; 58:11; Jer. 17:5-8; Matt. 7:15-23). Balaam saw the people of Israel as a “garden by a river” with trees in abundance (Num. 24:6). Like a tree, the godly person is alive, beautiful, fruitful, useful, and enduring. The most important part of a tree is the hidden root system that draws up water and nourishment, and the most important part of the believer’s life is the “spiritual root system” that draws on the hidden resources we have in Christ (Eph. 3:17; Col. 2:7). This is known as “abiding in Christ” (John 15:1-9).

In Scripture, water for drinking is a picture of the Spirit of God (John 7:37-39; 1 Cor. 10:4), while water for washing pictures the Word of God (Ps. 119:9; John 15:3; Eph. 5:26). Thirst for water is an image of thirst for God (42:1; 63:1; 143:6; Matt. 5:6; Rev. 22:17), and the river is often a picture of God’s provision of spiritual blessing and help for His people (36:8; 46:4; 78:16; 105:41; Ex. 17:5-6; Num. 20:9-11; Ezek. 47; Rev. 22:1-2). We can’t nourish and support ourselves; we need to be rooted in Christ and drawing upon His spiritual power. To meditate on the Word (v. 2) is one source of spiritual energy, as are prayer and fellowship with God’s people. “Religion lacks depth and volume because it is not fed by hidden springs,” wrote Alexander Maclaren.

Trees may wither and die, but the believer who abides in Christ stays fresh, green, and fruitful (see 92:12-14). “Fruit” speaks of many different blessings: winning people to Christ (Rom. 1:13), godly character (Rom. 6:22; Gal. 5:22-23), money given to the Lord’s work (Rom. 15:28), service and good works (Col. 1:10), and praise to the Lord (Heb. 13:15). It’s a tragedy when a believer ignores the “root system” and begins to wither. We must remember that the tree doesn’t eat the fruit; others eat it. We must also remember that fruit isn’t the same as “results,” because fruit has in it the seed for more fruit. Fruit comes from life, the life of God flowing in and through us.

The godly person described in verses 1-3 is surely a picture of our Lord Jesus Christ, who, according to John 14:6, is the way (v. 1), the truth (v. 2), and the life (v. 3).

3. The Person Who Needs a Blessing (vv. 4-6).The first half of the psalm describes the godly person, while the last half focuses on the ungodly, the people the godly must seek to reach with the gospel. How desperately these people need to know God and receive His blessings in Christ! The wicked are pictured in many ways in Scripture, but the image here is chaff. In contrast to the righteous, who are like trees, the ungodly are dead, rootless, blown about, and destined for the fire. Chaff is worth nothing. When the grain is winnowed, the wind blows the chaff away, and what chaff remains is thrown into the fire. John the Baptist used these same images of the tree, fruit, and chaff to warn sinners to repent (Matt. 3:7-12). The wicked of this world seem rich and substantial, but from God’s point of view, they are cheap, unsubstantial, and destined for judgment. (See Ps. 73.) No wonder Jesus used the garbage dump outside Jerusalem (gehenna) as a picture of hell, because that’s where the cheap waste ends up in the fire (Mark 9:43-48). The chaff is so near the grain, but in the end, the two are separated, and the chaff is blown away or burned. But until that happens, we have the opportunity to witness to them and seek to bring them to Christ.

There is a coming day of judgment, and the Lord, the Righteous Judge, will separate the wheat from the tares, the sheep from the goats, and the trees from the chaff; and no unbeliever will be able to stand in the assembly of the righteous. The verb knows in verse 6 doesn’t mean that God is aware of them intellectually and has the godly in his mind. Rather, it means that God has chosen them and providentially watched over them and brought them finally to His glory. The word know is used, as in Amos 3:2, to mean “to choose, to enter into covenant relationship with, to be personally acquainted with.” The Jewish Publication Society translation of Amos 3:2 is “You alone have I singled out of all the families of the earth.” That same translation gives verse 6 as “For the Lordcherishes the way of the righteous.…” At the last judgment, Jesus says to the wicked, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness” (Matt. 7:23 nkjv).

This psalm begins with “blessed” and ends with “perish.” True believers are blessed in Christ (Eph. 1:3ff.). They have received God’s blessing, and they ought to be a blessing to others, especially to the chaff that will one day be thrown into the fire. Let’s seek to win as many of them as we can.

Psalm 1

  1. What does Psalm 1 identify as the key to success? How do you personally measure true success?
  2. According to Psalm 1, what conditions must you meet in order to be “blessed”? Are you willing to meet these conditions?
  3. What will you do this week to be a blessing to others?

[Home Group] Psalm 1: Follow, Join in, or Stand around with?

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.

They are like trees planted along the riverbank,

bearing fruit each season.

Their leaves never wither,

and they prosper in all they do.

But not the wicked!

They are like worthless chaff,

scattered by the wind.

They will be condemned at the time of judgment.

Sinners will have no place among the godly.

For the Lord watches over the path of the godly,

but the path of the wicked leads to destruction.
Psalms 1:1‭-‬6 NLT

NOTE: For the full Wiersbe commentary for this chapter, click here

Those Blessed

Verse one tells us an interesting contrast about ” the joys of those who do not…” compared to those who associate with sinners/wicked/mockers. This tells us about those blessed with wisdom and integrity to live set apart from such dark things. It is a joy that comes from a blessed life. So this verse is primarily about those who are receiving the joy of the Lord, blessings that come from a life that isn’t knee deep in filth.

Those Blessing

Verses two and three tell us not just about what is received for themselves, but what they produce. Not only are they blessed, but they reap fruit and prosperity that is a blessing to others. Their delight is not centered in the gifts and blessings God gives, but in God, as those who “delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night.”

Those in Need of Blessing

Verses four and five contrast the wicked and condemned, who are neither blessed nor are a blessing to others.


And there is another party to all of this who is made clear in verse 6, and that is the Lord. He is not only the source of the law, He is not only the source from whom all blessings flow (by His watching over the godly), but He is also the source of judgement upon those who rebel. Revelation 6:16 reminds us that it is “the wrath of the Lamb” that is poured out in judgement, and Revelation 19:15 reminds us that “He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.

Wisdom Psalms

This chapter is considered a “Wisdom Psalm”. For more information on Wisdom Psalms, check out this video:

Why is psalm 1 a “Wisdom psalm”?

It focuses on God’s Word. It confirms God’s blessing on those who obey it and mediate on it. It confirms His abiding presence and the results of His fruit/ character/outpouring through those who abide in Him. It confirms God’s judgement on those who rebel.

It contrasts:

The Way vs broad way

Wickedness vs faithfulness

It speaks to relationships between these groups:

Wicked Sinners

Godly saints

The Lord

It speaks to either:

the foolishness of bonds and ties to the foolish and the wicked —

Or the wisdom of turning to God and being separate from the worldly.


Can we see a “conditional” playing out in all of this? Can we see the “if we are this, God is this towards us…” start to play out in this psalm? If we in fact believe that His Word is true, can we see how aligning ourselves incorrectly can hinder the blessings of God according to this passage?

At this point, I must interject, to reference another blog entry, because someone will read this and say “but it isn’t my perfection that I’m relying upon, but upon Christ’s righteousness — to which I say “Amen!” If this is you, click here — otherwise, continue on.

So can we agree that we want to align ourselves with the will of God, to turn and follow in the footsteps of Christ, to walk in The Way, to not hinder the Holy Spirit of God, but to reverently fear and respect God and live godly lives as children of our Father in Heaven even now?

With that settled, this Psalm instructs us to:

1) Be set apart from:

– wicked advice

– ongoing fellowship with sinners or mockers

2) Delight in the law of the Lord & meditate on it (cherish it, consider it, ponder it) day and night

3) Through abidung in and not hindering the power of the Holy Spirit, be a blessing to others

This is a great contrast to the wicked mentioned in verses 4-5.

And there are very different consequences demonstrated in verse 6 for the two different conditions laid out. Depending on the “IF”, there is a very different “THEN” that is born out in the end.

Our Responsibility to the Wicked?

So do we bear any responsibility to the wicked, if we consider ourselves the blessed and the ones bringing blessing?

I will point you to a compelling blog with reading and considering honestly: http://www.biblelineministries.org/articles/basearch.php3?action=full&mainkey=BLOOD+ON+YOUR+HANDS%3F

What practical implications should this have on our lives?

If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved. As the Scriptures tell us, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.” Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him. For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!” But not everyone welcomes the Good News, for Isaiah the prophet said, “ Lord , who has believed our message?” So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.
Romans 10:9‭-‬17 NLT

Important Question, Eternally Important.

Someone will read some of my posts encouraging righteous living and say “but it isn’t my own perfection that I’m relying upon, but upon Christ’s righteousness” — to which I say “Amen!”

But don’t we need to know if we in fact have Christ’s righteousness upon which we claim that we can strand upon so firmly?

NOTE: This page exists PRIMARILY because of that reoccurring question that comes from folks who are opposed to such discussions pressing each other on in godly living, and who claim “that is works based speech”.

Paul speaks of this deception many times and specifically mentions it to Timothy in a way that is hard to dismiss or twist and pervert:

Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
2 Timothy 3:12 NLT

Those who want to use their own comfortable ideas, opinions, and feelings about Jesus to justify their continuing in a sinful, worldly life that bears little difference to anyone else who is lost and living for themselves — That type of people don’t face risk of persecution — they fit right in with everyone else headed down the broad way to destruction.

Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
John 8:12 NLT

Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin. A slave is not a permanent member of the family, but a son is part of the family forever. So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.
John 8:34‭-‬36 NLT

Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning? Of course not! Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living. Because of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy. When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:15‭-‬23 NLT

Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God. Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
1 Corinthians 6:9‭-‬11 NLT

Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. There is only the terrible expectation of God’s judgment and the raging fire that will consume his enemies. For anyone who refused to obey the law of Moses was put to death without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God, and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us. For we know the one who said, “I will take revenge. I will pay them back.” He also said, “The Lord will judge his own people.” It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
Hebrews 10:26‭-‬31 NLT

Brothers and sisters, we urge you to warn those who are lazy. Encourage those who are timid. Take tender care of those who are weak. Be patient with everyone. See that no one pays back evil for evil, but always try to do good to each other and to all people. Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. Do not stifle the Holy Spirit. Do not scoff at prophecies, but test everything that is said. Hold on to what is good. Stay away from every kind of evil. Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again. God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful.
1 Thessalonians 5:14‭-‬24 NLT

So someone will then ask, “What must I do?”

Peter’s words pierced their hearts, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” Peter replied, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is to you, to your children, and to those far away —all who have been called by the Lord our God.” Then Peter continued preaching for a long time, strongly urging all his listeners, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation!” Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day—about 3,000 in all. All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper ), and to prayer. A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity — all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.
Acts of the Apostles 2:37‭-‬47 NLT

[Home Group] Study Tools


We talked tonight about several online tools that I find helpful in studying, counseling, making decisions, etc. So I’ve gathered links from several of my favorite sites (and apps), along with an explanation of how I use them.

Youversion.com/Bible.com App

This website (and especially their app) makes it easy to flip through, read, highlight, and even copy/paste sections of scripture for use in messages, Facebook posts, etc. It offers any easy drop down to switch to your favorite translation, and the app even allows you to have the whole bible downloaded for offline reading, and it even offers listening to recorded audio readings in your choice of translation that are very good quality.




Open Bible Topical Search

This is a great search for finding scripture about a specific topics, for study, counseling, or whatever the purpose when you want to know what the Bible has to say about a particular topic. If you type into Google search “Bible say about willful sin” (or any other topic), the first option is probably going to be Open Bible’s topical search results on that subject. This is a heat resource, because it doesn’t give commentary, opinion, or application, it just gives you a list of related verses. Now I do suggest you then go and read that whole section of surrounding scripture and not just that one verse alone– so that you understand the context, original meaning, and right application.




Bible Project / Read Scripture App

Need an overall understanding of a book of the Bible or concept/thread in the Bible drawn out for you in an easier to understand graphical explanation? This group is your source for the 10,000ft view. Their smartphone app is also pretty awesome.




Bible Study Tools Commentaries

This is a great resource for commentary on specific chapters and verses you are studying. If you type into Google search “Proverbs 1 commentary” (or any other book and chapter), the first option is probably going to be Matthew Henry’s whole Bible commentary from this site for that particular chapter — and if you add to the end of your Google search “Proverbs 1 commentary gill” you will probably get Gills exposition from this site as the guest result. There are also other valuable commentaries and resources on this site:




Bible Hub Parallel

This is a great resource for understanding different nuances that are a part of the translation process for varying Bible translations. If you type into Google search “biblehub proverbs 1:1” this site’s parallel result are usually the first result and you can see multiple translations of that one verse all on the same page for comparison.




Blue Letter Bible Intralinear

This is a great resource for looking into the original language and wording (Hebrew, Greek). I suggest the desktop version of this site as opposed to the mobile version. For this site, go to the main site, then enter chapter and verse or search terms and then dig in from there, once you click on a specific verse, you will see both English and original language weeds for comparison, along with strong’s concordance numbers for reference that you can click to see the original meanings for the original language. You can even see other verses in the Bible where that word was used so you understand it’s biblical context and use.




PrayerMate App

Want to keep up with varying prayer requests and sort them into lists so you don’t forget someone’s request? Want to be able to say, give me X number of folks to pray for right now based on how much time you have and our roll through your lists fairly, eventually getting to everyone by rotating through your various lists of requests? This is your app for that!


[Home Group] Book of Psalms – Intro

Tonight, we are beginning a 12 week study on the book of Psalms that meets in our house each Wednesday night at 6:30-8:00PM. This is a study for adult couples, and throughout the time that the adults meet at our house, childcare is available at The Well in Landrum, SC from 6:15-8:30PM.

Our group study guide:

The Wiersbe Bible Study Series: Psalms: Glorifying God for Who He Is https://www.amazon.com/dp/1434764877/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_t.Z5zb0S0A0ZD

“Reading Psalms” Overview

OPTIONAL: Supplimental Materials for the Wiersbe Study

Be Worshipful (Psalms 1-89): Glorifying God for Who He Is (The BE Series Commentary) https://www.amazon.com/dp/1434767396/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_Aa05zb9SSYGP0

Be Exultant (Psalms 90-150): Praising God for His Mighty Works (The BE Series Commentary) https://www.amazon.com/dp/143476737X/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_ib05zb7QHGN1G

OPTIONAL: “Psalms for Beginners” Study Videos

Lesson 1 – Intro

Lesson 2 – Literary Devices

Lesson 3 – Wisdom Psalms

Lesson 4 – Nature Psalms

Lesson 5 – Word Psalms

Lesson 6 – Penitential Psalms

Lesson 7 – Worship Psalms

Lesson 8 – Suffering Psalms

Lesson 9 – Assurance Psalms

Lesson 10 – Praise Psalms

Lesson 11 – Royal Psalms

[Spruce Pine] Proverbs 12 NLT

Proverbs 12 (NLT)

12 To learn, you must love discipline;
it is stupid to hate correction.
2 The Lord approves of those who are good,
but he condemns those who plan wickedness.
3 Wickedness never brings stability,
but the godly have deep roots.
4 A worthy wife is a crown for her husband,
but a disgraceful woman is like cancer in his bones.
5 The plans of the godly are just;
the advice of the wicked is treacherous.
6 The words of the wicked are like a murderous ambush,
but the words of the godly save lives.
7 The wicked die and disappear,
but the family of the godly stands firm.
8 A sensible person wins admiration,
but a warped mind is despised.
9 Better to be an ordinary person with a servant
than to be self-important but have no food.
10 The godly care for their animals,
but the wicked are always cruel.
11 A hard worker has plenty of food,
but a person who chases fantasies has no sense.
12 Thieves are jealous of each other’s loot,
but the godly are well rooted and bear their own fruit.
13 The wicked are trapped by their own words,
but the godly escape such trouble.
14 Wise words bring many benefits,
and hard work brings rewards.
15 Fools think their own way is right,
but the wise listen to others.
16 A fool is quick-tempered,
but a wise person stays calm when insulted.
17 An honest witness tells the truth;
a false witness tells lies.
18 Some people make cutting remarks,
but the words of the wise bring healing.
19 Truthful words stand the test of time,
but lies are soon exposed.
20 Deceit fills hearts that are plotting evil;
joy fills hearts that are planning peace!
21 No harm comes to the godly,
but the wicked have their fill of trouble.
22 The Lord detests lying lips,
but he delights in those who tell the truth.
23 The wise don’t make a show of their knowledge,
but fools broadcast their foolishness.
24 Work hard and become a leader;
be lazy and become a slave.
25 Worry weighs a person down;
an encouraging word cheers a person up.
26 The godly give good advice to their friends;
the wicked lead them astray.
27 Lazy people don’t even cook the game they catch,
but the diligent make use of everything they find.
28 The way of the godly leads to life;
that path does not lead to death.





Reverberating Loop

The wicked borrow and never repay, but the godly are generous givers.
Psalms 37:21 NLT

What an amplifying companionship these two would have in direct contact with each other, right?

A generous giver and one who takes and never repays…

When looking at this single verse by itself, standing on its own, can we see the opportunity for enabling, for manipulation, for codependent behavior with each fulfilling the desire of the other — in a frenzied, reverberating, growing crescendo until this symbiotic relationship reaches critical mass and blows up?

So we can probably agree that emotional manipulation is abuse, and is wrong, and that God knows and sees exactly what is going on in the hearts of an abusers.

But even as the wicked becomes more wicked, what is happening to the generous godly giver?

Only meeting needs or expectations is NOT generosity. No, let’s look at the definition — “showing a readiness to give more of something… than is strictly necessary or expected“.

Hmm… I wonder if there is a wise teacher who could give us some clarity on this issue:

“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.
Matthew 5:43‭-‬48 NLT

Someone will inevitably say, “Now that just sounds unjust and foolish!”

And we can cover that as well.

The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God. As the Scriptures say, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.” So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish. Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe.
1 Corinthians 1:18‭-‬21 NLT

But answer me this — if we stand at the great judgement and men want to call me a hypocrite or unloving or anything other than Child of God, and we see that these accusers stand against me saying “To the pit! Burn him!” and such, based on many complaints found in the law and the evidence of my life’s actions, words and thoughts testifying either for or against me. And it comes my turn, and I could remind these evil, wicked men of the debts they never repaid me and I could call for the same death and punishment for them — or I could say, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”

Knowing that God can see my heart behind saying such a bold thing, could I say it truthfully — as opposed to from a stance of “look at me, I’m going to say what Jesus said to prove I’m better than you!” Because saying such words that came from His mouth from a hard heart and an unclean mouth, who can survive such things done in the presence of God?

What is the position you will take?

Proud judge and reasoner of the law?

Or humble, rightly accused, sinner saved by the grace of God — who is hungry for righteousness, willing to die to self, willing to forgive even his debtors, willing to love even his enemies — not because you are good enough to pull all of that off by yourself — but because you are born again in Christ and it is He that lives in you?

[Spruce Pine] Proverbs 11 NLT

Proverbs 11New Living Translation (NLT)

11 The Lord detests the use of dishonest scales,
but he delights in accurate weights.
2 Pride leads to disgrace,
but with humility comes wisdom.
3 Honesty guides good people;
dishonesty destroys treacherous people.
4 Riches won’t help on the day of judgment,
but right living can save you from death.
5 The godly are directed by honesty;
the wicked fall beneath their load of sin.
6 The godliness of good people rescues them;
the ambition of treacherous people traps them.
7 When the wicked die, their hopes die with them,
for they rely on their own feeble strength.
8 The godly are rescued from trouble,
and it falls on the wicked instead.
9 With their words, the godless destroy their friends,
but knowledge will rescue the righteous.
10 The whole city celebrates when the godly succeed;
they shout for joy when the wicked die.
11 Upright citizens are good for a city and make it prosper,
but the talk of the wicked tears it apart.
12 It is foolish to belittle one’s neighbor;
a sensible person keeps quiet.
13 A gossip goes around telling secrets,
but those who are trustworthy can keep a confidence.
14 Without wise leadership, a nation falls;
there is safety in having many advisers.
15 There’s danger in putting up security for a stranger’s debt;
it’s safer not to guarantee another person’s debt.
16 A gracious woman gains respect,
but ruthless men gain only wealth.
17 Your kindness will reward you,
but your cruelty will destroy you.
18 Evil people get rich for the moment,
but the reward of the godly will last.
19 Godly people find life;
evil people find death.
20 The Lord detests people with crooked hearts,
but he delights in those with integrity.
21 Evil people will surely be punished,
but the children of the godly will go free.
22 A beautiful woman who lacks discretion
is like a gold ring in a pig’s snout.
23 The godly can look forward to a reward,
while the wicked can expect only judgment.
24 Give freely and become more wealthy;
be stingy and lose everything.
25 The generous will prosper;
those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.
26 People curse those who hoard their grain,
but they bless the one who sells in time of need.
27 If you search for good, you will find favor;
but if you search for evil, it will find you!
28 Trust in your money and down you go!
But the godly flourish like leaves in spring.
29 Those who bring trouble on their families inherit the wind.
The fool will be a servant to the wise.
30 The seeds of good deeds become a tree of life;
a wise person wins friends.
31 If the righteous are rewarded here on earth,
what will happen to wicked sinners?





The Impact


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Everyone who will read this is part of my community of friends. Everyone who reads what you post is part of your community of friends.

I wonder how often we consider the impact our words have on that community of friends?

When we reach out with our words of anger, of offense, of forgiveness, of confession, of love, of truth — do we consider that there are ears to hear and hearts to receive what we are pouring out?

Or is more important that we have an outlet and a platform to be heard and seen, no matter the cost?

“With their words, the godless destroy their friends,
but knowledge will rescue the righteous.

The whole city celebrates when the godly succeed;
they shout for joy when the wicked die.

Upright citizens are good for a city and make it prosper,
but the talk of the wicked tears it apart.

It is foolish to belittle one’s neighbor;
a sensible person keeps quiet.

A gossip goes around telling secrets,
but those who are trustworthy can keep a confidence.” – Proverbs 11:9-13 NLT

Even if you are not yet a believer in Christ Jesus, you cannot deny in your heart the truth, guidance, and instruction found in His Word, even if your mind fights to excuse it, dismiss it, and ignore it.

“Professing Christian”, if you are foolish and will not listen, if you will not receive correction, if you have chosen your sin over God’s instruction, remember that we are told they those who receive His correction are his children, but those who do not are illegitimate and are not children of God (Hebrews 12:8). I say these things while there is time for you to truly turn to God and learn to love God (Joshua 24:15). If you do what is right and trust and believe the Lord, you will be accepted and forgiven — but if not, sin and death wait at the door to devour you (Hebrews 10:26-27).

Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls. And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Acts 2:37‭-‬47 ESV

[Spruce Pine] Proverbs 10 NLT

Proverbs 10 (NLT)

The Proverbs of Solomon

10 The proverbs of Solomon:

A wise child brings joy to a father;
a foolish child brings grief to a mother.

2 Tainted wealth has no lasting value,
but right living can save your life.

3 The Lord will not let the godly go hungry,
but he refuses to satisfy the craving of the wicked.

4 Lazy people are soon poor;
hard workers get rich.

5 A wise youth harvests in the summer,
but one who sleeps during harvest is a disgrace.

6 The godly are showered with blessings;
the words of the wicked conceal violent intentions.

7 We have happy memories of the godly,
but the name of a wicked person rots away.

8 The wise are glad to be instructed,
but babbling fools fall flat on their faces.

9 People with integrity walk safely,
but those who follow crooked paths will be exposed.

10 People who wink at wrong cause trouble,
but a bold reproof promotes peace.

11 The words of the godly are a life-giving fountain;
the words of the wicked conceal violent intentions.

12 Hatred stirs up quarrels,
but love makes up for all offenses.

13 Wise words come from the lips of people with understanding,
but those lacking sense will be beaten with a rod.

14 Wise people treasure knowledge,
but the babbling of a fool invites disaster.

15 The wealth of the rich is their fortress;
the poverty of the poor is their destruction.

16 The earnings of the godly enhance their lives,
but evil people squander their money on sin.

17 People who accept discipline are on the pathway to life,
but those who ignore correction will go astray.

18 Hiding hatred makes you a liar;
slandering others makes you a fool.

19 Too much talk leads to sin.
Be sensible and keep your mouth shut.

20 The words of the godly are like sterling silver;
the heart of a fool is worthless.

21 The words of the godly encourage many,
but fools are destroyed by their lack of common sense.

22 The blessing of the Lord makes a person rich,
and he adds no sorrow with it.

23 Doing wrong is fun for a fool,
but living wisely brings pleasure to the sensible.

24 The fears of the wicked will be fulfilled;
the hopes of the godly will be granted.

25 When the storms of life come, the wicked are whirled away,
but the godly have a lasting foundation.

26 Lazy people irritate their employers,
like vinegar to the teeth or smoke in the eyes.

27 Fear of the Lord lengthens one’s life,
but the years of the wicked are cut short.

28 The hopes of the godly result in happiness,
but the expectations of the wicked come to nothing.

29 The way of the Lord is a stronghold to those with integrity,
but it destroys the wicked.

30 The godly will never be disturbed,
but the wicked will be removed from the land.

31 The mouth of the godly person gives wise advice,
but the tongue that deceives will be cut off.

32 The lips of the godly speak helpful words,
but the mouth of the wicked speaks perverse words.