Walking in the Godly Way

A sermon idea based on Psalm 1.

Psalm 1:1-6 NRSV

[1] Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers; [2] but their delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law they meditate day and night. [3] They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper.

[4] The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away. [5] Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; [6] for the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.


The relevant topic I would be addressing, based on this text…

Every day, we get to choose to grow toward our most mature, blessed, and happy selves by living according to God’s Word.


Information about the text that matters to the message…

The first psalm is a poem containing two contrasting pictures. The first is of the godly person who listens to what God has revealed and walks in obedience. The second is the wicked person who pushes God’s influence away and wastes their life.

Those who follow the pathway of godlessness and wickedness follow a particular progression that leads downward, from walking to standing to sitting.

Those who obey God’s Word, soaking it in and putting it into practice, progress upward in growth like a fully alive green tree along the river bank whose roots soak up nourishment and moisture to last through the dry seasons.

One is a pathway toward death and waste. The other is the pathway toward life and flourishing. And we all get to make the choice concerning which pathway to follow.


The big call-to-action in the message…

Spend time this week meditating contemplatively on scripture. Soak it in. Read it, learn it, and apply its wisdom as you make choices each and every day that set you on a pathway toward growth in holiness and love.

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About the Cover Art: Gogh, Vincent van, 1853-1890. Olive Trees, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN.

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