Saturday, January 1, 2011

Day 1 — Psalm 1

The two ways

Happy the man
who never follows the advice of the wicked,
or loiters on the way that sinners take,
or sits about with scoffers,
but finds his pleasure in the Law of Yahweh,
and murmurs His Law day and night.

He is like a tree that is planted by water streams,
yielding its fruit in season,
its leaves never fading;
success attends all he does.
It is nothing like this with the wicked, nothing like this!

No, these are like chaff
blown away by the wind.
The wicked will not stand firm when Judgment comes,
nor sinners when the virtuous assemble.
For Yahweh takes care of the way the virtuous go,
but the way of the wicked is doomed.

Next… Psalm 2


  1. Romanós, how lovely!
    Yesterday, I began reading the Psalms, first in English, then in French and then in Russian. 1 through 10. I have a Kindle. Have you looked on Ebay and Alibris and Amazon? I've seen copies of the 1966 version there.

  2. Yes, Jewel, the original JB is available, but only in the bulky paperback that was my first copy, and which I used as my ‘study bible’ as a young Christian. That original copy of mine I still use, because it is marked all over and underlined throughout and it helps me focus on the ‘rhimata’, the living words (verses particularly alive for me) that have molded my life and thought. It's the copy shown in the sidebar of Cost of Discipleship with an ikon of Christ pasted on the cover. You can also get the bulky hard cover edition, sometimes with slip cover. I have one of these too, a first edition in fact, and it is chock full of typos! After that first edition, someone went through and corrected most of them. My original leather bound copy has next to none.

    What is very rare, though, are copies in good leather binding that are small enough to carry with you. My first one, which I used when I read the gospels aloud in public (the pages in Revelation have a crinkly onion-skin quality from being exposed so often to Oregon mist) has not any detached pages yet, but the cover leather is very worn. To replace it, all the copies I ever found were over $200 until finally I found one for about fifty or sixty dollars and bought it. It is exactly like my first one, a "Reader's Edition" without most of the notes. Then, just last October, I was in Powell's (the largest used book store in America) here in Portland, and found an excellent white leather bound copy of the full edition with all notes, for only ten dollars! That was definitely a ‘praise God’ moment! It is now the bible I keep near me at home, and the smaller black leather bound in its zipper sachet goes with me anytime I leave the house.

    That's my story about getting a Jerusalem Bible in today's world. I should add that the original JB has been republished in hard cover, but I haven't taken a look at it. I also once owned a copy of the New JB, but after inspecting it, I ‘cast it on the waters’ of Goodwill, hoping it would find a friend. The Word of God is always special, whatever the version, and no disrespect is meant, but everyone has a mother they love, and the Jerusalem Bible is mine.

  3. C,H, Spurgeon comments on Verse 3.

    "And he shall be like a tree planted"--

    not a wild tree, but "a tree planted," chosen, considered as property, cultivated and secured from the last terrible uprooting, for "every plant which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up:" Matthew 15:13. "By the rivers of water;" so that even if one river should fail, he hath another. The rivers of pardon and the rivers of grace, the rivers of the promise and the rivers of communion with Christ, are never-failing sources of supply. He is "like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;" not unseasonable graces, like untimely figs, which are never full-flavored. But the man who delights in God's Word, being taught by it, bringeth forth patience in the time of suffering, faith in the day of trial, and holy joy in the hour of prosperity. Fruitfulness is an essential quality of a gracious man, and that fruitfulness should be seasonable. "His leaf also shall not wither;" his faintest word shall be everlasting; his little deeds of love shall be had in remembrance. Not simply shall his fruit be preserved, but his leaf also. He shall neither lose his beauty nor his fruitfulness. "And whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." Blessed is the man who hath such a promise as this. But we must not always estimate the fulfillment of a promise by our own eye-sight. How often, my brethren, if we judge by feeble sense, may we come to the mournful conclusion of Jacob, "All these things are against me!" For though we know our interest in the promise, yet we are so tried and troubled, that sight sees the very reverse of what that promise foretells. But to the eye of faith this word is sure, and by it we perceive that our works are prospered, even when everything seems to go against us. It is not outward prosperity which the Christian most desires and values; it is soul prosperity which he longs for. We often, like Jehoshaphat, make ships to go to Tarshish for gold, but they are broken at Ezion-geber; but even here there is a true prospering, for it is often for the soul's health that we would be poor, bereaved, and persecuted. Our worst things are often our best things. As there is a curse wrapped up in the wicked man's mercies, so there is a blessing concealed in the righteous man's crosses, losses, and sorrows. The trials of the saint are a divine husbandry, by which he grows and brings forth abundant fruit.

  4. Thanks, brother, for adding this comment from Spurgeon! Please add more to other psalms as you come across them, so we can work together!

  5. I've seen you use the word "rhimata" a few times now. What's the origin and etymology of the word?

  6. Jason, here is a Wikipedia link that I think adequately explains rhema / rhemata:

    I use a variant English spelling based on my transliteration of biblical Greek as it is spoken in the Greek Orthodox community.