God Wants You to be Happy! PSALMS 1:1-6 Part 1

By Warren Coe

South Suburban Evangelical Free Church

For complete series go here.

INTRODUCTION Psalms 1:1-6: 1

1.  As a young Christian I read Blasé Pascal’s Pensees. This mathematical and literary genius said something amazing nearly 400yrs ago.

  • All men seek happiness. There are no exceptions. However different the means they may employ, they all strive towards this goal. This is the motive of every act of every man including those who hang themselves.
  • These words shocked me. Is desire to follow Christ fueled by the desire to be happy?
  • So I re-read the Bible with the goal to discover if, indeed, God created us to be happy.

2. I read Ps37:4 Delight yourself in the Lord. 1Th5:16 Rejoice always. Jm1:3 says Consider it all joy my brethren when you encounter various trials…

  • These verses & hundreds like them say the same thing; God wants us to be happy.
  • But I needed more proof. So I turned to Ps1. The first Psalm that begins the book of Psalms.
  • Ps1 has been called Psalm of Psalms. David may have written it. Jeremiah quoted it

3. Providence decreed that when the book of Psalms was assembled that this Psalm would be in the leadoff position. God the Holy Spirit made this 1st place in Psalter.

  • Theme & content of Ps1 is a perfect summary of God’s law & purpose for man
  • God’s aim for his people is happiness.
  • He teaches this truth by contrasting way of righteous with the way of wicked.
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Today, from Ps1 I want us to discover the kind of happiness God has planned for his people

I. THIS HAPPINESS IS ATTENTION-GETTING HAPPINESS V1

1.  V1 begins with blessed is a man or happy is the man, It is written with an exclamation mark. Like saying Lookout! Behold! Oh! Or Jesus’ truly, truly, I say

  • The fact that the word blessed is 1st word of 1st verse announces the major theme of Ps1
  • God not only wants us to be happy but he wants us to be really, really happy.
  • Grammatically, the word shouts for our attention: Happy is the man!

2. Ancient Jews understood this blessedness God ordains is both feeling & condition. A blessed man feels happy. He lives with a sense of joy & gladness.

  • Nothing wrong with feelings especially when they are directed and informed by the Word of God.
  • But this happiness is also a condition. God means to set us up with a happy life.
  • Goal of creation Ge1:22. Purpose of repentance Ps51:8,9 Object of Salvation Lk2:10
  • Bless, blessed, blesses, blessing, blessings 533x or every 2 chapters, more often used than the word blood

3. Add the blessing of adoption into God’s family, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, our sanctification and one-day glorification, we have a neon-sign conclusion. God wants us happy.

  • You’re wondering if the glory of God & man’s happiness is at odds with each other?
  • Answer is simple: God’s glory is maximized when we are most satisfied in Him.
  • When we prize him above all else, he gets the glory and we get the joy.

4.This is the point of parable of merchant who finds a treasure buried in field & sells everything in order to purchase the field & gain the treasure.

  • The treasure is God & his kingdom. The gain is great joy. Prize God. Get joy.
  • The reason most people are unhappy is that they prize trinkets & not God.
  • Quarterback Jim McMahon of the Chicago Bears after winning Super bowl in 1986 when he was asked How do you feel? Unsatisfied.

Not with God’s people! God’s purpose is extravagant, attention getting happiness. Is this You?

II.THIS HAPPINESS IS AN ABUNDANT HAPPINESS V1

1. You can’t see this in our English Bible, although a good commentary will point it out. Word blessed is not singular but plural. God’s blessings are many!

  • He is not miserly. No Bah! Humbug! God. He delights showing generosity.
  • This God did with Old Testament saints. Jer30:18,19. And Christ did for New Testament saints. Ep1:3.
  • God opens treasury of heaven & invites us to receive his eternal riches.

2. What separates a mature Christian from an immature Christian? Mature Christian recognizes all they have is from God & they are glad! Immature Christian is blind to God’s care & complains

  • Fanny Crosby blind at 6 weeks old, said as an adult, I’m happiest woman on earth.
  • Bill. Bright at end of life described his life as a joyful adventure with Christ
  • More than all other people, Christians recognize that they are abundantly blessed & are happy

3. David Meyers wrote an interesting book The Pursuit of happiness: Who is Happy & Why. He quotes a survey that shows a vital link between religion & mental health.

  • Unlike Freud’s idea that religion is an illusion, even a guilt-producing obsessional neurosis. Religious people are much less likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, to divorce or be unhappily married, or to commit suicide. Christians are physically & mentally healthier! Blessed and healthy as a rule

4. Take moment. Write down five blessings You have received from God’s hand. It could be your spouse or parents or a friend; healthy, job or whatever

  • Hold onto them. Later, go around the table and share them with family.
  • Afterward bow your heads before God and give thanks.
  • These five blessings are but a few of manifold happiness God has given to you.

The kind of happiness God gives his people is attention getting and abundant. Notice

III. THIS HAPPINESS IS A SIN-LOATHING HAPPINESS V1

1. Now writer of Ps1 shows the kind of company the blessed person refuses to keep. Throughout entire Psalms two types of people are compared.

  • Godly are compared to wicked; Way of life & final destiny are contrasted
  • Path godly take is path away from ungodly; they avoid lifestyle of godless
  • Our happiness as believers is a sin-loathing happiness.

2. This is not the best-written main point, but I wanted to match other main point. Yet it captures meaning of the next section in V1. What is described is a single group of people

  • We have the wicked, sinners and scoffers. Few Bible teachers see degrees of sin here.
  • Writer employs Hebrew. Parallelism describing godless people.
  • In talking about walking/standing/sitting, writer portrays totality of evil

3. They are schoolmates that call you a religious sissy. They are people at work who despise you because of Jesus. Fashion designers who sensualize the human body.

  • Songwriters & singers whose songs of lust cheapen beauty of marital love.
  • They are God-demeaning TV shows or movies or books.
  • Because the godly person avoids the godless he lives in joy of the Lord.

4. Now you say wait a minute. We live in a fallen world. Sinners crisscross our life like the freeways of LA. It is totally unavoidable. Yes & No.

  • I’ll answer question definitively next wk. The brief answer is intentionality.
  • Godly person, thus the happy person, intentionally steers clear of wicked
  • Godly avoids appearance of evil, flees youthful lust, walks not in path of the wicked.

CONCLUSION:

1. George. Muller lived from 1805 to 1898 and is famous for establishing numerous orphanages in England. One day he describes the central activity of his life

  • The first great & primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord. The first thing to be concerned about was not, how much I might serve the Lord, or how I might glorify the Lord; but how I might get my soul into a happy state
  • George Muller read Psalm 1. He owned the blessings of God.

2. Those who make getting happy in Jesus the central activity of their life shows it to all they meet. Melvin Newland tells story of 3 prospectors who find a rich view of gold during Ca gold rush

  • Realizing great discipline they vowed to keep it secret & headed to town file claim
  • True to vow no one said word. They filed claim, got equip & returned to the mine.
  • Crowd followed. Why? You found gold. How do you know? Your face gave away.

3. Oh, the blessings of God, they are attention getting. Oh the blessings of God they are abundant. Oh, the blessings of God for the person who rejects evil.

  • Our happiness is God’s main work in our lives. He means for us to be happy.
  • Jeremy Taylor, God threatens terrible things if we will not be happy
  • Ps1 is God’s megaphone from heaven thru his Word, Be happy! Live happy!

Sung By Bobby Mcferin

Here’s a little song I wrote
You might want to sing it note for note
Don’t worry, be happy.
In every life we have some trouble
But when you worry you make it double
Don’t worry, be happy.
Don’t worry, be happy now.

*Don’t worry, be happy.
Don’t worry, be happy.
Don’t worry, be happy.
Don’t worry, be happy.

Ain’t got no place to lay your head
Somebody came and took your bed
Don’t worry, be happy. T
he landlord say your rent is late
He may have to litigate
Don’t worry, be happy.

*(Look at me — I’m happy.
Don’t worry, be happy.
Here I give you my phone number.
When you worry, call me, I make you happy.
Don’t worry, be happy.)

Ain’t got no cash, ain’t got no style
Ain’t got no gal to make you smile
Don’t worry, be happy.
‘Cause when you worry your face will frown
And that will bring everybody down
Don’t worry, be happy.

*(Don’t worry, don’t worry, don’t do it. Be happy.
Put a smile on your face. Don’t bring everybody down.
Don’t worry. It will soon pass, whatever it is.
Don’t worry, be happy. I’m not worried, I’m happy… )

For complete series go here.

Product image for ASIN: 0060987359

Get this must have resource on Happiness!

Happiness Is a Serious Problem : A Human Nature Repair Manual

waynem

About waynem

As a Minnesota based photographer and artist I have been greatly influenced by the Upper Midwest. I focus my skills and energies on portraits, landscapes, cityscapes, architectural and fine art work. My best work comes from images first painted in my mind. I mull over a prospective image for weeks or months, seeing it from different angles and perspectives, then finally deciding what to capture. The result is images that deeply touch people's emotions and powerfully evoke memories and dreams. My images are used commercially by companies and organizations ranging from Financial Services firms, mom and pop Ice Cream shops and The Basilica of St Mary to communicate their shared vision and values. Book and magazine publishers have featured my images on their covers. My photographs also grace and enhance the decor of many fine homes.
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2 Responses to God Wants You to be Happy! PSALMS 1:1-6 Part 1

  1. Charles Beams says:

    But more than us being happy, God wants glory. His glory is more important than our happiness. Just ask Job.

  2. Wayne M says:

    Charles,
    Of course what you say is true but that does not negate the entire purpose of this study.

Comments are closed.