One man is blessed. One man is not. What is the difference between the two men? The first of the Psalms tells us. One man walks in the counsel of the ungodly; stands in the path of sinners; sits in the seat of the scornful.
Note the progression of this individual:
• He walks which lacks permanence. He is flitting and flirting with the things of sin. He steals a taste, retreats, comes back and swipes again at the sweet. He is in the thinking stage, consulting with the ungodly and being influenced by their beliefs.
• Then he stands, but his commitment has legs, he can reverse direction, but where he had once just walked, he has become comfortable. Hence, he hangs around with sinners. He is in the acting out stage, doing what sinners do.
• Finally, he sits with the scornful. He is in the adopting the same attitude stage. He thinks; he acts; and he is – the ungodly, the sinner, and the scornful.
The other man chooses not to walk, not to stand, not to sit with those who oppose the ways and things of God.
The progression of this individual is:
• He begins to walk with God and tastes the sweetness of His Word. He believes and listens to God’s counsel and thinks as God thinks.
• He plants his feet on the path of the righteous and does what the righteous do.
• Finally, he sits with the faithful and commits himself unto all the pursuits of true godliness. He thinks; he acts; and he becomes – the godly, the righteous, and the thankful.
The psalmist says this second man will make a real difference in our “It’s a mad, mad, mad world.” He will be like a great tree planted by the waters. He will produce a lifetime of fruit to feed all those around him. His leaves will not fall but always give a refreshing shade to the weary. He is blessed, and he is a conduit of blessings to others. He prospers and his ways and influence will turn many onto the right path. And in the end, he will stand “in the congregation of the righteous.”
The psalmist says the first man mentioned above ultimately makes no difference in our “lost Eden world.” He has no roots. The wind picks him up and blows him hither and beyond and gone. No fruit. No shade. No blessings. He follows after the fools who precede him, and he influences others onto the same futile path. And in the end “the way of the ungodly shall perish.”
These two individuals are representations of the hearts and positions of the believer and the unbeliever. As you read this – are you contemplating where you walk, where you stand, and where you sit in this brief life?
Whichever side you find yourself on, you must admit – there is quite a difference!