“In Jesus Christ dwells all the fullness of the Divine bodily.” - Colossians 2:6, 9
Kempton New Church

Week 1
Day 1


Psalms: Introduction

The Beginning of the Psalms

Psalm 1


Happy is the man◦2

Who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,

And in the way of sinners stands not,

And in the seat of the scornful sits not.


But in the law3 of Jehovah is his delight,

And in His law he meditates day and night.


And he shall be as a tree planted by streams of waters, That gives his fruit in its time,

And his leaf does not fade;

And all that he does shall prosper.


Not so the wicked,

But they are as the chaff which the wind blows away.


Therefore the wicked shall not rise up in the judgment,

Nor sinners in the congregation of the just.


For Jehovah knows the way of the just;

But the way of the wicked shall perish.

versestopicSummary of the Spiritual Sense
(Click on a verse to see the summary for that verse.)
1-311The man who does not live badly is regenerated by the Word of the Lord,
4-53but he who lives badly perishes on the day of judgment,
615for the Lord knows everyone.

AE 687:6. Here the expressions “to walk,” “to stand,” and “to sit,” are used as following one another, for “to walk” pertains to the life of thought from intention, “to stand” to the life of the intention from the will, and “to sit” to the life of the will, thus it is life’s being. Moreover, “counsel,” of which “walking” is predicated, has respect to thought; “way,” of which “standing” is predicated, has respect to the intention; and “to sit in a seat” has respect to the will, which is the being of man’s life.

Coronis 7. The order into which every man was created by God is that after infancy he may become a man. For when he is born, he is only an external image or form of a man, and at that time less a man than a new-born beast is a beast. But so far as he is inwardly perfected in this form, as to his mind or his spirit in wisdom and love, he becomes a man.

A man is like a tree, which first grows up from a seed into a shoot, and when it increases in height puts forth branches and from these stems, and clothes itself continually with leaves. And when it comes to maturity, which takes place in its middle age, it puts forth flowers and produces fruits. In each fruit it places seeds, which being cast into the earth, as into a womb, grow up into similar trees and thus into a garden. And if you are willing to believe it, that same garden remains with the man after death; he dwells in it, and is delighted daily with the sight of it, and with the use of its fruits. It is such a man who is described in David by these words [in Psalm 1:3].

2 “Man◦” with the little circle translates the Hebrew ish, which means a male. In the spiritual sense a male signifies anyone who is regenerated by truth to good.

3 AC 6752:4 notes that “the law” here refers to the books of Moses, as nothing beyond Judges had yet been written.

Questions and Comments
  1. What is the first word of the Book of Psalms? What does this show us about the purpose of the Author?
  2. What is the overall message of this psalm?
  3. The progression of walking in the counsel, standing in the way, and sitting in the seat pictures a spiritual progression, upward or downward, from thought, to intention, to will. How can we use this tool to guard ourselves from evil?
  4. Look for the marriage of good and truth throughout the psalms. One example, in verse 2, is delighting and meditating in the law of Jehovah. See also verse 5.
  5. Trees need both roots downward and branches upward, just as we need “roots” in speaking words and doing works in the natural world, as well as “branches,” reaching up with our minds to receive affections and thoughts from heaven.
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