Sermon on Psalm 1 | A Tale of Two Roads

A road

A Tale of Two Roads (Psalm 1)

We often ponder the direction our lives will take. We spend time finding just the right spouse. We spend time training for just the right career.

Yet, there are only two directions our lives can take (Matt. 7:13-14). There is the way of the righteous and the way of the unrighteous. Tonight, we want to examine those two roads.

The Way of the Righteous, vv 1-3

The righteous man is blessed. “Blessed” means to have divine favor. God is pleased with those who are righteous.

The righteous man does not associate with evil. This man does not walk in the counsel of the ungodly. “Ungodly” refers to those who are immoral. These are those who have no moral standards. Many have no moral standards. “Counsel” refers to their “way of thinking.” The righteous man does not think like the ungodly–he refuses to live immorally; he has standards.

This man does not stand in the path of sinners. “Sinners” refers to those who are overtly sinners–everyone in town knows their sin. “Path” refers to their life. The righteous man does not pass his life in open sin.

This man does not sit in the seat of the scornful. “Scornful” refers to those who mock holy things; people actually will mock the divine. “Seat” refers to their gathering place. The righteous man does not get together with those who mock true religion.

The righteous are separated both from evil and from those who commit evil. The righteous are to be separated from evil (1 Pet. 2:24). The righteous are to be separated from evil individuals. Scripture admonishes us to be separated (2 Cor. 6:14-15). Scripture admonishes us to be separated because we become like our friends (1 Cor. 15:33).

Instead of partaking with evil, the righteous man loves the law. This man delights in the law. The law makes the righteous man happy. As is clear from the context, this man delights in doing, not just knowing, the law. This man is going to make every attempt to know and to do the law. Does doing God’s law make you happy?

He meditates upon the law day and night. Since not everyone in this day had his own copy of Scripture, individuals would memorize large sections. They would internalize the law–allow the law to become part of them. We can’t just know the law. We must allow the law to become a part of us. We must make an attempt to understand the law. We must see how the law applies to us.

The righteous man is not easily moved. This man is like an immovable, firm tree. This tree is planted by the waters. This tree brings forth its fruit. This tree’s leaves do not wither. This is a healthy, immovable tree; the righteous are healthy and immovable. Much in life will try to move us, but we dare not move (1 Cor. 15:58). Are you immovable?

Whatever the righteous man does prospers. This verse shows that God blesses the righteous. Joseph received such a blessing from God (Gen. 39:3). Is God blessing your work?

The Way of the Wicked, vv 4-5

The wicked are like chaff. The wind comes and drives this chaff away. They are far from immovable-the wicked just move with the flow.

The wicked shall not endure the judgment. Due to their wickedness, the ungodly will not stand in the judgment. In other words, the wicked will not make it. The end of the wicked may not be clear in this life, but they shall come to an end.

The wicked shall not be in the congregation of the righteous. The “congregation of the righteous” here refers to those who are saved. The wicked will not be a part of that number.


God knows the way of the righteous. God knows how we live. When no one else sees us struggling against sin, God sees.

The way of the wicked shall perish. The wicked will get away with nothing. It may seem that in this life they shall escape, but they shall not.

Does God know your way or shall your way perish?

This sermon was originally preached by Dr. Justin Imel, Sr., at the Owingsville church of Christ in Owingsville, Kentucky.

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