Psalm 1 describes the “Blessed Man.” “Blessed” at its simplest is to do with happiness. It’s the happiness that comes when we have God’s approval over our lives.
We are happy when we do not associate with wickedness or listen to corrupt advice. Instead, the happy person’s “delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he mediates day and night.” (Psalm 1:2). Law here refers immediately to the Torah (the first five books of the Bible). Actually, Torah is not just a law code as we would understand it but includes the retelling of redemptive history, poetry and song that celebrates God’s goodness and predictions, warnings and promises for the future. We can widen out the application to the whole of Scripture.
Christians, both when they are assembled as church and individually, should take time to get to know God’s Word. Older translations talk about “meditating” on God’s Word. The idea is that we should take time to read it, slowing down to reflect on what it has to say, studying it closely to grasp its meaning, considering how we can respond obediently to what it says.
I do think it is right to encourage Christians to read their Bibles for themselves daily and for families regularly to study God’s Word together. Remember though that this does not mean that we become individualistic in our approach to Scripture. There’s no room for personalised applications that are not tried and tested within the context of the local church.
As we have seen earlier, this soaking in God’s Word is not meant to be seen as a safe, cosy, fluffy exercise. Rather, God’s Word is given as teaching, correction and rebuke in the context of the trials and tests that come with opposition. This leads us to another application.