Blessed is the man who doesn’t walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the way of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in Yahweh’s law. On his law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree planted by the streams of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also does not wither.
Why do you boast of mischief, mighty man? God’s loving kindness endures continually. Your tongue plots destruction, like a sharp razor, working deceitfully. You love evil more than good, lying rather than speaking the truth. You love all devouring words, you deceitful tongue. God will likewise destroy you forever. He will take you up, and pluck you out of your tent, and root you out of the land of the living. The righteous also will see it, and fear, and laugh at him, saying, «Behold, this is the man who didn’t make God his strength, but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.» But as for me, I am like a green olive tree in God’s house. I trust in God’s loving kindness forever and ever. I will give you thanks forever, because you have done it. I will hope in your name, for it is good, in the presence of your saints.
I awakened; for Yahweh sustains me. I will not be afraid of tens of thousands of people who have set themselves against me on every side. Arise, Yahweh! Save me, my God! For you have struck all of my enemies on the cheek bone. You have broken the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to Yahweh. Your blessing be on your people.
Why do the nations rage, and the peoples plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth take a stand, and the rulers take counsel together, against Yahweh, and against his Anointed, saying, «Let’s break their bonds apart, and cast their cords from us.» He who sits in the heavens will laugh. The LORD will have them in derision. Then he will speak to them in his anger, and terrify them in his wrath: «Yet I have set my King on my holy hill of Zion.» I will tell of the decree. Yahweh said to me, «You are my son. Today I have become your father. Ask of me, and I will give the nations for your inheritance, the uttermost parts of the earth for your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron. You shall dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.» Now therefore be wise, you kings. Be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve Yahweh with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Give sincere homage to the Son, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way, for his wrath will soon be kindled. Blessed are all those who take refuge in him.
It is a good thing to give thanks to Yahweh, to sing praises to your name, Most High; to proclaim your loving kindness in the morning, and your faithfulness every night, with the ten-stringed lute, with the harp, and with the melody of the lyre. For you, Yahweh, have made me glad through your work. I will triumph in the works of your hands. How great are your works, Yahweh! Your thoughts are very deep. A senseless man doesn’t know, neither does a fool understand this: though the wicked spring up as the grass, and all the evildoers flourish, they will be destroyed forever. But you, Yahweh, are on high forevermore. For, behold, your enemies, Yahweh, for, behold, your enemies shall perish. All the evildoers will be scattered. But you have exalted my horn like that of the wild ox. I am anointed with fresh oil. My eye has also seen my enemies. My ears have heard of the wicked enemies who rise up against me. The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree. He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in Yahweh’s house. They will flourish in our God’s courts. They will still bring forth fruit in old age. They will be full of sap and green, to show that Yahweh is upright. He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.
Answer me when I call, God of my righteousness. Give me relief from my distress. Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer. You sons of men, how long shall my glory be turned into dishonor? Will you love vanity, and seek after falsehood? But know that Yahweh has set apart for himself him who is godly: Yahweh will hear when I call to him. Stand in awe, and don’t sin. Search your own heart on your bed, and be still. Offer the sacrifices of righteousness. Put your trust in Yahweh. Many say, «Who will show us any good?» Yahweh, let the light of your face shine on us. You have put gladness in my heart, more than when their grain and their new wine are increased. In peace I will both lay myself down and sleep, for you, Yahweh alone, make me live in safety.
Praise waits for you, God, in Zion. To you shall vows be performed. You who hear prayer, to you all men will come. Sins overwhelmed me, but you atoned for our transgressions. Blessed is one whom you choose, and cause to come near, that he may live in your courts. We will be filled with the goodness of your house, your holy temple. By awesome deeds of righteousness, you answer us, God of our salvation. You who are the hope of all the ends of the earth, of those who are far away on the sea; Who by his power forms the mountains, having armed yourself with strength; who stills the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations. They also who dwell in faraway places are afraid at your wonders. You call the morning’s dawn and the evening with songs of joy. You visit the earth, and water it. You greatly enrich it. The river of God is full of water. You provide them grain, for so you have ordained it. You drench its furrows. You level its ridges. You soften it with showers. You bless it with a crop. You crown the year with your bounty. Your carts overflow with abundance. The wilderness grasslands overflow. The hills are clothed with gladness. The pastures are covered with flocks. The valleys also are clothed with grain. They shout for joy! They also sing.
Praise Yah! Praise Yahweh, my soul. While I live, I will praise Yahweh. I will sing praises to my God as long as I exist. Don’t put your trust in princes, each a son of man in whom there is no help. His spirit departs, and he returns to the earth. In that very day, his thoughts perish. Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in Yahweh, his God: who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps truth forever; who executes justice for the oppressed; who gives food to the hungry. Yahweh frees the prisoners. Yahweh opens the eyes of the blind. Yahweh raises up those who are bowed down. Yahweh loves the righteous. Yahweh preserves the foreigners. He upholds the fatherless and widow, but the way of the wicked he turns upside down. Yahweh will reign forever; your God, O Zion, to all generations. Praise Yah!
Sing aloud to God, our strength! Make a joyful shout to the God of Jacob! Raise a song, and bring here the tambourine, the pleasant lyre with the harp. Blow the trumpet at the New Moon, at the full moon, on our feast day. For it is a statute for Israel, an ordinance of the God of Jacob.
What is the goal of the Christian life, and how do we help one another get there? One old catechism says that our chief purpose in life is to glorify and enjoy God forever. This is true. We were created for God’s glory and to proclaim his praises (1 Corinthians 10:31; Ephesians 1:11-12; 1 Peter 2:9). We exist to worship God, and in order to be genuine, this worship must come from the heart. It must be an expression of our real feelings. We adore God above everything else, and we submit to his every command.