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Are You Truly a Psalm 1 Man? - Tim Conway

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    Brethren, please turn in your Bibles
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    to Psalm 1.
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    Our brother Craig said he felt inclined
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    to preach from this psalm last week,
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    but he didn't, because
    the week before that
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    Brother Nathan Rages
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    brought us a message on stability
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    or stay-bility.
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    And Craig felt that he didn't just use
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    this psalm as a launching point,
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    but kind of stayed here for quite awhile,
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    so Craig thought to move on,
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    but I think it's interesting
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    that three preachers in a row
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    have been impressed as I have as well,
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    even before Nathan brought that.
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    I've been thinking much about
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    the first psalm.
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    And I am inclined to take us there again,
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    even after Craig was
    done preaching last week,
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    I told Craig, I believe I am
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    going to deal with Psalm 1,
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    and, God helping us,
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    let's look at it.
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    Let's read it
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    in its entirety.
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    "Blessed is the man..."
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    And I'll tell you, if we know Scripture,
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    there are one in a thousand such men.
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    "Blessed is the man
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    who walks not in the
    counsel of the wicked,
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    nor stands in the way of sinners,
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    nor sits in the seat of scoffers.
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    But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
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    and on His law, he
    meditates day and night.
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    He is like a tree planted
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    by streams of water,
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    that yields its fruit in its season,
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    and its leaf does not wither.
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    In all that he does, he prospers.
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    The wicked are not so..."
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    In fact, in the Septuagint, this reads
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    as a double negative:
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    "Not so the ungodly." Not so.
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    "...but are like chaff,
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    that the wind drives away.
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    Therefore the wicked will not stand
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    in the judgment,
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    nor sinners in the congregation
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    of the righteous."
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    Churches here are mixed,
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    but as we heard in the first hour,
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    every church has at least one devil in it.
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    They're mixed here.
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    They won't be then.
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    "For the Lord knows
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    the way of the righteous,
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    but the way of the wicked will perish."
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    This is a psalm.
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    It's the first one.
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    In it, you saw it,
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    there's two men.
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    There's one called (v. 1) blessed...
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    is the man.
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    And then when you look down in v. 6,
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    "The Lord knows the way of the righteous."
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    There's one man - the blessed man,
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    the righteous man.
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    And then there's another man.
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    And you see him here.
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    V. 4 - "The wicked are not so."
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    V. 5 "The wicked will not stand..."
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    V. 6 "The wicked will perish."
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    We're all here.
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    All mankind encapsulated
    in this one psalm.
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    But see, I see a problem right off.
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    I mean, as I read this,
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    and I think about preaching it.
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    I recognize, you as you process this,
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    that man has a built-in disposition
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    to deny and reject that he is wicked.
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    Nobody takes that term upon themselves.
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    I know you've got certain crazy people
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    out there that delight in such things.
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    But I'll tell you, when
    really pushed to it,
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    as far as their eternal welfare,
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    as far as their standing before God,
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    men sarcastically will talk about
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    being wicked,
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    or in their pride,
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    they will try to outdo one another
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    in evil deeds,
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    but when they're pressed to it,
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    men say, well, in the depths of my heart,
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    really at the deepest level,
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    I'm a good person.
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    You see, I recognize
    there's a disposition.
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    Why?
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    Because the word just sounds too horrible.
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    Wicked.
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    It's too heinous.
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    It's just too bad to describe me.
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    And here's what happens:
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    So, men think to themselves,
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    Ok, I'm about to hear the righteous
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    compared with the wicked.
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    Well, I know I'm not wicked.
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    So somehow or another,
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    what's said of the righteous -
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    it has to describe me.
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    Maybe not perfectly,
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    but I'm in there somewhere.
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    Because I'm not wicked.
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    I know I'm not that.
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    So, somehow I've got to fit in over here.
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    What's said of the wicked man
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    can't possibly be true of me.
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    You see, men, men... presuppositions.
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    They're ideas about themselves.
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    In fact, what's interesting is how often
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    the Bible has to tell us who we are.
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    It's amazing.
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    It has to tell wicked people who they are,
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    and it has to tell the
    righteous who they are.
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    Why?
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    Because we have a real hard time
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    getting that straight ourselves,
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    even as Christians.
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    Think about how often
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    the New Testament is simply
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    telling Christians who they are.
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    We don't get it right.
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    As Christians, we tend to think less
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    of ourselves than we ought to.
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    And as lost people,
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    we tend to think far more of ourselves
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    than we ought to.
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    We have a real hard time
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    getting this straight.
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    And so God comes along
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    and over and over and over again,
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    He is telling us who we are.
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    What we are.
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    This is why the Bible goes
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    to all these lengths
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    to define us over and over.
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    And you know what?
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    There's nothing that tells us who we are
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    like this book tells us who we are.
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    Nothing describes us like this book.
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    So, here's the thing,
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    v. 4, the wicked are not so.
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    You know what?
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    If we could just tear that out -
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    we don't want to do that,
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    but if we did, if we just replaced it
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    with "the man of the world..."
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    intelligent, intellectual, wise,
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    independent, fun-loving,
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    free-spirited, free thinking, witty...
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    you know what,
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    we might get more people to be honest.
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    Because the problem is,
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    as soon as the word wicked comes up,
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    oh, that's not me!
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    But you know, if we
    redefined it a little bit,
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    and put it in more acceptable terms,
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    people would let their guard down.
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    But that word wicked...
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    what about that?
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    It makes us think of wicked witches.
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    The wicked - like the devil.
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    But notice the simplicity of it all.
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    Look at v. 4.
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    "The wicked are not so."
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    Just think about that.
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    Think about the simplicity of that.
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    The wicked are not so.
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    There's no horns.
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    There's no pointed hat
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    and black cats here.
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    They don't torture people
    in their basement.
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    What is it?
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    What's true of the righteous...
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    not so.
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    That's the wicked.
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    They're not pedophiles.
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    Pedophiles are wicked,
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    but you get my drift here?
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    This is just: show me
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    what the righteous man is;
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    the wicked man is just not like that.
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    He doesn't have to run around
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    being an axe murderer.
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    He's just not like the righteous.
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    You see, there's only
    two categories here, folks.
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    And if you're not in the righteous,
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    the blessed man category,
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    you're in the other.
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    You're just not like the righteous.
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    That's it.
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    That's the wicked.
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    We need to see this for what it is.
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    The wicked are not so.
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    Brethren, this is God's teaching.
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    That's what Psalm 1 is.
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    What we come to right here -
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    it was spoken by David in the beginning,
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    but this is no invention of man.
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    This is inspired language.
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    This is God defining humanity.
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    There are only two alternatives here.
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    You see it.
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    Men are so disposed
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    to think in degrees.
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    Right?
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    It's not just black or white.
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    We like to think in degrees.
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    We like to think
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    somewhere in the middle.
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    That there's other alternatives.
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    But we're not given that.
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    There's no middle ground somewhere here.
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    See, we tend to think,
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    well, come on, are you
    righteous all the time?
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    Well, you know, I'm a sinner,
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    but I'm not that bad.
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    I'm not wicked.
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    So, I'm somewhere in the middle.
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    Scripture doesn't allow that.
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    We tend to think that way,
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    but Scripture doesn't allow this
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    thinking in degrees.
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    It's pretty radical.
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    Boy, how often does Scripture do this?
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    It's everywhere - in the Old Testament
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    and in the New. Everywhere!
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    That Scripture comes along and says
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    Bang! Bang!
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    Two camps.
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    You're in one or the other.
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    Radical. No in-between's.
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    That is such the language of Scripture
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    over and over and over.
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    Only two men in this psalm.
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    No middle ground.
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    Either you're one or the other.
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    We're looking at two men.
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    Just two.
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    You're like one.
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    Or you're not so.
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    So, let's consider this.
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    Let's consider the first four words.
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    "Blessed is the man..."
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    I've got five "P's"
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    that I want to use to describe just this.
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    Blessed is the man.
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    The first is this.
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    The first "P": Plurality.
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    There's a plurality of blessednesses.
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    Martin Luther points out,
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    and I needed somebody else to tell me this
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    because I can make my way through Greek,
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    but Hebrew is out there.
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    Luther says in the Hebrew,
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    the word "blessed" is plural.
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    It's literally blessednesses.
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    All blessednesses are the portion
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    of this blessed man.
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    All things are well
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    with a man like this.
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    Spurgeon calls it
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    the multiplicity of blessings.
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    You want to be this guy.
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    This means everything is good.
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    Everything is blessed.
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    Blessednesses.
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    The second "P" is
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    the propensity towards blessedness.
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    What do I mean by that?
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    Propensity.
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    The desire.
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    We desire this.
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    All men desire this.
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    Brethren, as was mentioned by Craig
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    last week, happy, blessed,
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    blessed is the man.
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    There are places such as Deuteronomy 33:29:
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    "Happy are you, O Israel!
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    Who is like you?
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    A people saved by the Lord."
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    Yes, this word can be translated
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    directly: "happy."
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    The happinesses - it's plural.
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    All the happinesses of the man
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    that's described here.
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    And here's the thing.
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    You think with me here.
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    Of all that God could have done
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    in starting out the book of Psalms,
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    the very first one,
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    the very first line,
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    He hits us with the thing
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    that all men have a propensity for;
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    that all men long after:
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    happiness.
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    We are all anxious to be blessed.
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    When we hear Esau,
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    remember how he was?
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    With his father Isaac?
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    "Bless me, even me also, O my father!"
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    Bless me!
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    That's how we all are.
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    We want it!
    We want it!
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    See, he was faced with the fact
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    that he was losing it.
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    And he was desparate.
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    Bless me!
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    We all want that blessing.
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    And you know what gives man
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    even the ability to make it
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    from one day to the next
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    is hope that ultimately,
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    he will receive that.
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    Hell is such hopelessness
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    because it's all gone.
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    The blessedness is all gone.
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    But this is the longing
    of the soul of man.
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    Right here at the beginning
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    of the very first psalm.
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    The third "P":
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    The positivity of blessedness.
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    "Blessed is the man."
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    Is. I put stress on "is."
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    It's not just that he will be.
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    He is.
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    The first psalm is God telling us
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    that blessedness is not
    just for the future.
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    You can be sitting here right in this room
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    in this world at this time
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    and be a man or woman
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    of all blessednesses.
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    I mean, you can sit here
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    and be the absolute envy -
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    if the truth were to be known -
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    the absolute envy of all mankind.
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    You have that which all men want.
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    There's a positivity here.
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    It's attainable.
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    In this world, it's attainable.
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    No matter if it's 106 degrees out.
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    It's attainable.
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    No matter if you're going through trials.
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    It's attainable.
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    That's the thing.
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    Go with David some time
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    and visit the nursing home.
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    Or, come with John Sytsma
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    when he goes over to Nepal,
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    and you look at one of these Hindi people
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    in their seventies or eighties.
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    You look at the old people
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    there in the nursing home.
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    Their faces - empty, hollow,
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    and they're just sad.
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    Why?
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    They've lived their lives.
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    So many promises of happiness.
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    When we talk about
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    "blessed is the man,"
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    they're one in a thousand.
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    You know what the other 999
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    are doing all the time?
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    The pleasures of sin for a season.
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    And those little pleasures in sin,
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    they're saying, "Try me! You'll be happy!"
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    "Try me! You'll be happy!"
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    And you're grasping at the wind.
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    You're grasping at mist.
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    Because there's pleasure for a season
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    and then it's gone.
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    And you spend a whole life doing that
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    and all these promises of happiness.
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    And you get to the end
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    and their religions haven't done it.
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    Their false gods have not done it.
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    And in all their old age,
    you look at them,
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    they're miserable.
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    They're out of their minds.
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    They just cuss and they swear
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    and they're mean.
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    You go there.
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    Isn't that how they are?
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    Just nasty old people.
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    Why?
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    Just hopeless.
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    They're getting to the end
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    and everything has proven empty.
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    It's just emptiness.
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    Only fear looms before them.
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    Happiness is one of
    the most elusive things
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    in this world.
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    You have a world out there chasing it,
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    and few there be that find it.
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    Few actually lay hold on it.
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    But, the promise here is
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    that there is a blessed man.
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    It's attainable.
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    That's the thing.
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    And oh, brethren,
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    don't we hear it in the
    very blood of Christ.
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    If anything whispers "blessedness,"
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    it's that blood.
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    The next "P" - the fourth:
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    The place of blessedness.
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    By "place," I mean,
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    where is it to be found?
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    Notice this:
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    Look at v. 2.
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    "His delight is in the law of the Lord
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    and on His law he
    meditates day and night."
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    Now, brethren, hear me carefully.
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    There is not a text,
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    and you won't find it.
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    Never found it in my Bible -
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    not any of the Bibles I've ever owned.
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    You will never find a beatitude that says,
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    blessed is the man who hungers and thirsts
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    for blessedness.
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    You won't find it.
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    It's not there.
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    Where is blessedness to be found?
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    Happiness is not to be found
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    in just seeking to be happy.
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    Think with me here.
Title:
Are You Truly a Psalm 1 Man? - Tim Conway
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Video Language:
English
Duration:
01:06:34

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