Praise the Lord.
Blessed are those who fear the Lord,
who find great delight in his commands.
Their children will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in their houses,
and their righteousness endures for ever.
Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous.
Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely,
who conduct their affairs with justice.
Surely the righteous will never be shaken;
they will be remembered for ever.
They will have no fear of bad news;
their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear;
in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor,
their righteousness endures for ever;
their horn will be lifted high in honour.
The wicked will see and be vexed,(Ps. 112:1-10 NIV)
they will gnash their teeth and waste away;
the longings of the wicked will come to nothing.
This is a wisdom Psalm that contrasts the way of wisdom with the way of folly. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of understanding and knowledge. So the person who fears the Lord is blessed. With the gift of wisdom comes delight in the Lord’s commands. The blessed person is a righteous person, and they invest their energy to establish God’s kingdom on earth. The Lord rewards the righteous person. Domestically they are blessed. Every child is a blessing from the Lord. It is a blessing to have children and grandchildren and great grandchildren. But sometimes the Sovereign Lord withholds this blessing from His people, yet the Lord promises that the generation of the upright will be blessed. The Lord gives wealth and riches in different measures to His people. Godliness has its rewards in this life, in future generations and in the life to come.
This does not mean that life is without its hardship. Yet even in darkness and adversity, the Lord gives light to the upright, the one who is compassionate and gracious. Light is a metaphor for redemption and the joy of life. Wisdom and light help us to put every experience in the perspective of eternity.
Good, or blessedness, comes to those who are generous in their support of others. This can be generosity with our time, our money and our emotions. To help others is to become emotionally involved, but there is blessedness for those who give of themselves freely. We should seek to conduct all our lives with justice. We should be just at work, at home and in the church, seeking to walk righteously before God and people.
The righteous person will not be shaken. This does not mean that life will run smoothly. But even when bad news comes, as it surely will, this is not feared. The lack of fear does not mean the lack of sadness or disappointment or tears. The righteous person is not a robot or stoic individual who has no emotional response to life’s events. Because their hope is in the Lord, they remain steadfast. Quite often it takes time for us to come to terms with some losses that come our way, but the heart is secure. There will be no crippling fear, because in the end the righteous person will triumph over adversity.
What is important is that we continue to do the right thing, sharing what we have with those in need. The righteousness of the righteous person will not be forgotten. The Lord treasures these things and the righteous will be honoured to the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The way of folly or the way of the wicked will waste away and come to nothing. They will witness the exaltation of the righteous, perhaps the people they mocked and despised. The Lord’s way is the wise way to live, even in dark times.
Heavenly Father, help us to lay hold of wisdom for life, to show reverence and honour to Your name. Let us never feel that our work for You is in vain. Help us to stand firm in the way of righteousness and fully give ourselves to the work of the Lord because we ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.