May 12

Psalm 1:4-6 

“Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the Lord watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” vss. 5-6

The psalmist reflected the common sense, black and white perspective of his religious peers, and his words resonate well with folks in our time too. He tells us that there are basically two kinds of people in the world, the righteous and the wicked. Good people walk in the way of righteousness, obey the laws of God, and bear fruit that brings them blessings. Sinners, on the other hand, are like wind-driven chaff and will be separated from the righteous by the judgment of the Lord. And that, in a nutshell, pretty much sums up the viewpoint of most major religions, including Christianity. Now there is much in this basic teaching that is easy to believe, and many passages of scripture do teach much the same thing. The problem is that life doesn’t operate according to our formulas, and it’s never as easy to differentiate right and wrong as we think it is. Seldom are things black and white–more often they’re some shade of grey, and doing the right thing isn’t always obvious. So-called righteous folks can do despicable things–sinners can do incredible good. What a blessing it is to adopt the posture of Jesus and just love all people, and trust that the unconditional grace of God covers us all!

Thought for the Day: When do I feel righteous indignation?

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