Main Point: This psalm is probably most well known because of Paul’s quotation of parts of it in Romans. He uses it to prove the point that all are sinners, and that all deserve the wrath of God. And the psalm certainly does make that point, that God has looked for the righteous in the children of man and has found none. The point that draws me in the most though, is the beginning of the psalm. The opening line reminds us that our continued sin in this life is much like the sin of adam and even. It is foolishness. Plain and simple foolishness to act as if God will not hold us accountable for our actions. The last 3 verses of the psalm also serve to remind us that God is faithful to the poor and righteous. He will take care of them, and bring them salvation.
Interesting Points: Just as a side note, David starts by saying that there is no one righteous among mankind, but reminds us that God is fighting on the side of the generation of the righteous. So even in David’s mind while all have sinned and turned away from God, this is not the sole determination of whether you are among the “generation of the righteous.” David does not flesh out here forgiveness of sins and the like, but it is clear even here in the Old Testament restoration and forgiveness is possible.
The key to understanding I think David’s mindset of who the righteous are in this psalm comes in verse 4, when uses “my people.” It is a reminder that the righteous are those whom the Lord has called. In David’s day it was the people of Israel, and in our day it is the Church.
Emotional reaction: This psalm brings sadness for my utter foolishness in my sin. It also brings me great Joy because I know that I have been counted among the righteous because the Lord has called me, and I am one of his people.