Reflecting on Psalm 73
“Behold, these are the ungodly, who are always at ease; they increase in riches. Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocence. For all day long I have been plagued, and chastened every morning. If I had said, ‘I will speak thus,’ behold, I would have been untrue to the generation of your children. When I thought how to understand this, it was too painful for me –” (Psalm 73:12-17a)
As Christians, it can be easy sometimes to look at those around us and wonder how the wicked prosper “year after year” as the song says.
“…until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end.” (v. 17b)
Have we really thought about the “end” of the wicked? Sure, we know Hell is real and we’re thankful we’re not going there but do we have a burden for those who are on their way to that dreadful place?
“Surely You set them in slippery places; You cast them down to destruction. Oh, how they are brought to desolation, as in a moment! They are utterly consumed with terrors. As a dream when one awakes, so, Lord, when You awake, You shall despise their image.” (vv. 18-20)
I have heard Hell described as separation from God and, although I believe in a literal Lake of Fire, I can’t picture anything more devastating than knowing that you can never have fellowship with God, that you are condemned to a place of eternal condemnation!
“Thus my heart was grieved, and I was vexed in my mind. I was so foolish and ignorant. I was like a beast before You.” (vv. 21-22)
Instead of envying those who don’t know God, we need to pray down a burden for them. We have not been saved because we are better than them; we have been saved because God is merciful and He is not willing that ANY should perish! However, to whom much is given, much is required.
“Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish; You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry. But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all Your works.” (vv. 23-28)
Thank You, Lord, that You never leave me. You are always here guiding me as I look to You. Help me to continually trust You in the good and the bad times for You never fail. Heaven and earth may pass away but Your words never pass away. Amen!