To Envy or Not?
Almighty God, on this Lord’s Day, may Your praise ring out clearly all over the earth.
Read Psalm 73:1-28
A psalm of Asaph.
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matt. 5:8). To see God is to have a sense of God in all the circumstances and relationships of life.
Have you ever felt that living the Christian life is tough? Take heart!
Our psalm falls into two halves, with a turning point at verse 17. It begins with a struggle of faith (1-16), which is transformed by the experience of worship (17), into confidence that the God of Israel will answer that struggle (18-28). The force of the adverb “surely” is that (1,13,18), despite the evidence, there is a condition contrary to that expected. So, despite contrary evidence, the psalmist maintains that God is good to Israel (1); despite the evidence that the wicked prosper, he will not adopt their ways (13). Having spent time in worship (17), he can say that despite outward appearances, he is confident that God will bring the wicked to ruin (18-20). He has been brought to an assurance that the goodness of God is seen not in prosperity but in his presence (23-28). He has won his struggle of faith through waiting on God and allowing him to reveal the mystery. This is a life lived in a faith that embraces the reality of life on earth but trusts in God despite the apparent contradictions life contains.
All of us who walk a life of faith know those apparent contradictions that can sometimes make us question the goodness of God. This psalm can speak to us and strengthen us as we walk by faith in a world that frequently dismisses any need for God. There is a turning point for the psalmist, and so there is for us. As we contemplate the cross, as we see how God worked out and continues to work out his purposes, and as we worship in our churches today, we can understand “their final destiny” (17). Just read the end of the book (e.g. Rev. 19-22)!
Spend time in worship allowing God to change your perspective on your struggles.
Lord Jesus, create in me a clean heart. Renew a right spirit in me. I want to have a singular focus on You and be in tune with Your workings in my life.
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