Psalm 1: Explained in Detail - LetterPile - Writing and Literature
Updated date:

Psalm 1: Explained in Detail

Margaret Minnicks has been an online writer for many years. She researches and shares remedies for using certain products for illnesses.

psalm-1-contrasting-fate-of-the-righteous-and-the-wicked

Psalm 1 is the introductory psalm to all 150 of them. It is clearly divided into two distinct parts.

  1. The first half describes the righteous and his fate. (Verses 1-3)
  2. The last part describes the fate of the wicked man. (Verses 4-5)

The concluding verse summarizes God's action toward each type of person.

Since the psalm is so short with only six verses, all of it is included in this article. That won't happen when this writer explains Psalm 119 with 176 verses.

The righteous is compared to a tree planted by the rivers of water.

The righteous is compared to a tree planted by the rivers of water.

The Righteous Person

The righteous person is described in the first three verses. That person is the one who knows and obeys God's commandments.

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. (Psalm 1:1)

Blessed is another word for happy. A righteous person is a happy person. He doesn't do several things.

  • He doesn't take advice from the ungodly.
  • He isn't influenced by sinners.
  • He doesn't do what scornful people do.

But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. (Psalm 1:2)

While the righteous person doesn't do the adverse things listed in Verse 1, he does do the good things listed in Verse 2.

  • He delights in obeying the law of the Lord.
  • He meditates on the law day and night. That's all the time.

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. (Psalm 1:3)

The righteous man is compared to a tree planted by rivers of water with the following results.

  • Bears fruit at the right time.
  • Leaf does not wither.
  • He has a prosperous lifestyle.
The wicked is compared to chaff that the wind blows away.

The wicked is compared to chaff that the wind blows away.

The Wicked Person

The wicked person is described in the next two verses. Instead of being compared to a healthy and thriving tree by the rivers of water, he is like chaff blowing away in the wind.

The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. (Psalm 1:4)

Chaff is lightweight and dry and the wind can easily blow it away. It is nothing like the firm tree with strong roots growing deep in the soil underneath it.

The consequences for the ungodly are clearly stated in the next verse. He will not stand along with the righteous when they are judged. Neither will they be in the congregation with the righteous.

Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. (Psalm 1:5)

God's Conclusion

The last verse of this first psalm is God's conclusion for the two types of people. The psalmist states the fate of the righteous and the ungodly.

For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish. (Psalm 1:6)

The fate of the righteous will be blessed. However, the ungodly shall perish.

Quiz

For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.

  1. Which is true?
    • Psalm 1 is the introduction to all the psalms.
    • Psalm 1 contrasts the righteous and the wicked.
    • Psalm 1 is divided into two distinct parts.
    • All of the above are true.
  2. The righteous is compared to this.
    • chaff
    • water
    • tree by rivers of water
    • tree in a fertile file
  3. The wicked is compared to this.
    • tree in the desert
    • tree by rivers of water
    • chaff that the wind blows away
    • grain in the field
  4. What is God's conclusion to Psalm 1?
    • Wicked will be with the righteous when judged.
    • Wicked will not be with the righteous when judged.
    • Wicked and righteous will be judged together.
    • Righteous will be judged first before wicked.

Answer Key

  1. All of the above are true.
  2. tree by rivers of water
  3. chaff that the wind blows away
  4. Wicked will not be with the righteous when judged.

Comments

Victoria Mitchell on March 17, 2020:

thank you

sheila on January 15, 2020:

THANK YOU.