Part 1 of 4
This Psalm is a kind of acrostic. Unlike most acrostic poems, here there are two verses (with the exception of a few verses) under each letter of the Hebrew alphabet but only the first line begins with the “correct” letter.
Verses 1-11 (of 40)
1 Do not fret because of evil men
or be envious of those who do wrong;
2 for like the grass they will soon wither,
like green plants they will soon die away.
3 Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
4 Delight yourself in the Lord
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him and he will do this:
6 He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.
7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when men succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret — it leads only to evil.
9 For evil men will be cut off,
but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.
10 A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
though you look for them, they will not be found.
11 But the meek will inherit the land
and enjoy great peace.
David’s only negative instruction in this Psalm:
Do not worry (Verses 1-2)
· We don’t have to worry about the actions of those who are evil.
· Nor should we want what they have.
· Why? They will wither up and die and their death is an eternal one.
Trust the Lord (Verse 3)
· This Psalm was used (and probably compiled) during the time of Babylonian captivity (book of Daniel, Esther…)
· David says “Keep your chin up!”
Delight in the Lord (Verse 4)
· Be careful on verses like this. Scripture is NOT saying “whatever you want, you’ll get”—at least not without context.
· The context gives condition: “delight” in the Lord
o Hebrew: literally means “to be soft or pliable”
o In other words: “be pliable for the Lord” THEN he will give you the desires of your heart.
o Why? Because when we are pliable for the Lord, He will give us a heart like His…so our heart will want the things HE WANTS!
Commit to the Lord (Verses 5-6)
· We are called to “roll onto” God.
· Our thoughts, purposes, and plans are to be “rolled into” God’s thoughts, purposes and plans.
· When that happens, He will make us shine like stars (Phil 2:15)
Rest in the Lord (Verses 7-11)
· The word for “be still” means to “rest from lack of thought”.
· In other words: we don’t think, we just truth the Lord.
· Then, upon doing this, the Lord will care for us and the plans of the wicked will ultimately lead to defeat. If not in this life then MOST DEFINATELY in the next.