Friday, February 10, 2012

Psalm 73 - "Whom Have I In Heaven but You?"

LINK: Psalm 73

BACKGROUND

Psalm 73 is one of the wisdom psalms.

This is the beginning of eleven psalms written by Asaph (Psalms 73-83). Asaph was a Levite musician and worship leader during David's reign (1 Chronicles 15:17).

In this Psalm, Asaph deals with one of the questions that we encountered while studying Job, specifically Job 21: Why do the righteous suffer while the ungodly prosper? He admits that he was envious of the prosperity of the wicked until he came into the sanctuary of the Lord and saw things from God's perspective and in light of eternity rather than the temporary life that he was living.

REFLECTION

Asaph admitted that he felt like he had cleansed himself in vain because life had gotten harder since he trusted in the Lord. It sounds like Job! He had done nothing wrong, but God allowed Satan to test him. It just does not seem fair that God would allow this while the wicked got away with no punishment.

How did Asaph overcome his doubts? He looked at things from God's eternal perspective! No matter how prosperous one is on this earth, he or she will still need to stand before God in heaven at the end of his or her life. For us today, we know from the New Testament that God will punish the wicked, and they will be away from His presence for eternity. In contrast, He will bless the righteous (we are righteous because Jesus was righteous, and God sees us through Jesus), and they will be in His presence forever.

Asaph knew that regardless of the circumstances of this temporary life and the "seeming" prosperity of the wicked God would . . .
Be with him (73:23)Guide him wisely (73:24)Lead him to glory (73:24)Be his only possession in heaven or on the earth (73:25)Be the strength of his heart and portion forever (73:26)

He concluded that being near to his God was the greatest good of all!

APPLICATION

I love this psalm. My friend Sally wrote a song to it, and I sing it often when all around me fails, and God reminds me that HE is all that I need.

Why don't you pray it back to God and personalize it? Praying Scripture is a wonderful way to get God's perspective on your circumstances.

PRAYER

Lord, teach us to look to You and see things from Your perspective today and not from our circumstances. We ask this in Jesus' name. Amen.
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