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The Blessed Man

Psalm 1 is not actually about you and me; like all of scripture, it is about Jesus.
Speaker: Ray David Glenn | August 27, 2017

Watch as Ray David unpacks Psalm 1 and shows us how it is all about Jesus.

The Happy Life

Psalm 1 begins with the words “Blessed is the man.” The closest translation to “blessed” in the context of Psalm 1 is “happy”. Psalm 1 is an outline of a happy life. When true, abiding happiness is discovered it changes everything. 

From Stone to Hearts

The happy person delights in the law of the Lord, and does not opt for the cheap, superficial delights of gossipers and scoffers, who tear each other down. The law of God for the Christian person goes from something written on tablets of stone to something written on our hearts. God’s best for us is no longer external, but internal. It is a process and you will begin to find that you no longer love the things that used to draw you off into the weeds, and instead you will begin to find that you will love the things that lead you to godliness and the Gospel. God is moment by moment writing His law on our hearts.

Living the Gospel

The Gospel not only saves us from judgment on the last day, but it also rescues the one and only life God gives us. The Gospel will transform your life. And it is the way that life works best. When we live the Gospel, when we’ve received grace from God, it makes us gracious, which heals and strengthens our earthly relationships. Life works best when we live the Gospel with one another. 

The blessed, happy life is rooted, nourished and fruitful in season. It is predictable. The wicked person’s life is blown to and fro. 

Do you know that the Lord knows you? Do you that the God of the Universe, who made everything, knows you personally – loves you, cares for you, and remembers you?

Jesus is the Blessed Man

Psalm 1 is not actually about you and me. Like all of scripture, Psalm 1 is about Jesus. True happiness, true blessing comes when you realize that all of scripture, including this psalm, is not primarily about what you should and should not do – it is about Jesus and what He has already done. 

Jesus is the blessed man. He is the righteous man. He is the only one who hasn’t walked in the counsel of the wicked, nor stood in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seat of scoffers. When He was reviled, He reviled not. Jesus is the only one who can say that His delight was fully in the law of the Lord. He’s the one who is like planted by streams of water. Everything single thing that he did prospered. Even something that seemed like complete loss He redeemed and used for good. Jesus did not become wicked, but on the cross He became wickedness itself. On the cross He had His body crushed under the weight of judgment. He body was crushed for you and in your place. He became what we were – wickedness, so that we could become what He is – righteous. He took all of the wickedness that was ours, so that we could have the righteousness that was His. He is the one whom the Lord knows and remembers. He is the one whom God did not abandon to the grave. And because God has remembered Him, God will remember you and me too.

Already Done

If you read Psalm 1 as though it’s all about you and what you should and shouldn’t do you, all you are going to do is feel the crushing weight of falling short. There’s no happiness and blessedness in that. But if you read in the light of what Jesus has already done for you, then you can rejoice and find deep happiness and blessing. Because He is the blessed man and when we fall short He is our advocate. He stands before the Father and says that ‘all of my blessedness is now theirs.’ 

It’s All About Him

The joy and happiness of the Gospel is that it’s not about us, it’s about him. And because of Him I am known, approved, and remembered by God. I will stand in the judgment and I am in the congregation of the righteous because of Jesus. 

This is the Gospel way of reading Psalm 1. And it sets you free from chasing the cultural narratives of happiness being just around the next corner – the next promotion, the next relationship or tinder hook-up. Instead, Psalm 1 reminds us that true happiness and blessedness is found in resting in the contentment and goodness of the gospel. Not what you do, but what the Blessed Man has already done for you. Psalm 1 reminds you that being blessed is not something to be pursued, it is something that is given from God to you in Jesus. 

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About the Author

Ray David Glenn
Ray David is the rector (Anglican talk for senior pastor) here at St. George's. He lives in Burlington with his wife Monica and kids.

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  • About the Author

    Ray David Glenn
    Ray David is the rector (Anglican talk for senior pastor) here at St. George's. He lives in Burlington with his wife Monica and kids.
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