Tag: Desiring God The Pressings of God ... Psalm 73:25. In praise, there is the speaking forth of one confessing; in singing, the affection of one loving. 4 For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm. God has questions for our certainties. Can you say that you desire God above all else? God is the Other, far above mankind; He cannot be manipulated or controlled. Scripture: Psalm 73:21–26. Weekly. A good Christian family, broken down on the side of the road, is assaulted by a motorcycle gang and left for dead. Psalm 73 A psalm of Asaph. Exemplary members of his people, a priest and a Levite, perceive his condition, but not wanting to become unclean they passed him by. In it Ms. McCrummen interviewed many members of First Baptist Church in Luverne, Alabama, regarding their support of Donald Trump and their convictions as those who profess the Lord Jesus Christ. Parenting tends to absorb each part of your day. He’s saying, “maybe it doesn’t matter how you live!” Here he has kept himself clean; he has walked in God’s ways, and unlike the wicked, he has been stricken and rebuked; he has suffered hard times. They must be led everywhere they go. Consider this godly guidance when you get a raw deal. Psalm 73:1 < > Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart. 4 For they have … 3For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. Follow John Piper on Facebook. In Numbers 13:33 the Israelite spies of the fifteenth century BCE testified to the existence of the Anakim in the land of Canaan, described as the descendants of the Nephilim. Love everyone. This is the turning point. https://t.co/7X3fZN0Hhv. Is that your motivation in life? She, after all, did not come up with all of this out of nowhere. And I began to long for what they had. God blesses his people, that is, the faithful ones among them, whom he calls the “pure in heart.” But our writer immediately goes on to recount for us his near loss of faith in God and his temptation to give up on walking in God’s ways. Whoever they were, and whatever the nature of their power, the Genesis author’s ambivalence toward them is evident: the conjoining of the “sons of God” and the “daughters of men” led God to limit human life to 120 years, and they flourished in the days when the heart of man was only evil continually (Genesis 6:3, 5). David’s great hope involved dwelling in YHWH’s house forever, always enjoying His presence. Follow John Piper on Instagram. Now, everyone suffers to some degree. Our culture and upbringing will give us reason to think it extreme to believe Jesus meant such things without qualification. It is only when he goes to God that he has any perspective on his circumstances. God’s blessings do not compare with God Himself; let us declare, as Asaph did, that there is nothing on earth we desire besides God, and grow in faith accordingly! People like the idea of green pastures and still waters. BOOK III Psalms 73–89 Psalm 73 - A psalm of Asaph. Today we speak highly of “good Samaritans”; to Israel, there was no good Samaritan, and to see a half-breed prove more righteous than priests and Levites would stick in the Israelite craw. Scripture: Psalm 73:12–28. Asaph has learned true wisdom: God is true wealth, because despite all the trials, tribulations, suffering, and righteousness necessary to be in relationship with God, God is the Certainty by which we can continue to live, our Sustainer and Redeemer whether we have much or little, health or illness, fame or infamy. Of Solomon. Nevertheless, Asaph has it right: we must desire God, not what God gives. Why do the wicked prosper and the righteous suffer? Yes, these stories all relate to the distant past and prove parallel, flowing from some sort of shared remembrance. Christians must look upon such narratives with a skeptical eye, understanding their own past as the Genesis author understood humanity’s shared past. David received comfort from YHWH’s rod and staff: a shepherd would have kept a rod or staff, often bent with a hook to form the “crooked staff,” in order to support himself while walking and to provide guidance for the sheep. People like to hear it; they like to have their consciences thus assuaged. Yet no explanation is really given. Comparing a person to a sheep is not flattering, then or now: sheep, quite frankly, are dumb. Countless generations have taken comfort and strength from Psalm 23:1-6, and for good reason. He is good to those who have pure hearts. Psalm 73 – “My Feet Almost Slipped” The title of this psalm (A Psalm of Asaph) tells us that it was written by the great singer and musician of David and Solomon’s era (1 Chronicles 15:17-19, 16:5-7, 25:6). But as for me, it is good to be near God. To what do the wealthy wicked look when they see the future? The themes of Psalm 73 are also prominent in Jonathan Edwards’s most famous sermon, … Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged desiring God, doubt, envy, faith struggle, prosperity of the wicked, Psalm 73, relationship with God, right desires | 1 Comment. —Psalm 73… This last phrase in v. 3, “the prosperity of the wicked,” is literally the shalom or peace of the wicked, referring to their easy, peaceful lives. It should be true that the righteous are blessed and the wicked are judged. He realizes that he is blessed now, even without the prosperity he envied. Required fields are marked *. When Jesus asked this Israelite what he thought of the answer based on the Law, his response was of great value, one with which Sheila Butler would no doubt agree: you shall love YHWH your God with all your heart, soul, and strength, and you shall love your neighbor as yourself (Luke 10:26; cf. We can turn away and live the lie or we can lament, repent, and find life in Jesus. The cork is pulled out at the bottom of his life. The Lord YHWH is the Creator; Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith (Genesis 1:1, Hebrews 12:2). Psalm 73. It’s the first of 11 such psalms in a row by him, that begin the third section of the book of Psalms. Follow Desiring God on YouTube John Piper. God blesses his people, that is, the faithful ones among them, whom he calls the “pure in heart.” Amos 6:6, Matthew 6:17). We therefore must prove willing to follow Him and the paths He has established for us, even and perhaps especially when we find ourselves in the valley of the shadow of death. Weekly. And yet the Samaritan was moved with compassion toward the injured Israelite, bound up his wounds, poured oil on them, and brought him to lodging, giving the money he had and pledging a bit more if necessary. In life we are given reason to question or challenge the goodness of this creation and the things within it; we sometimes may even question if there will be anything beyond this life, any great reckoning, any ultimate goal. We do well to consider deeply Asaph’s cry. John put it mildly when he said Jews have no dealings with Samaritans (John 4:9). His flesh will fail; God will be his strength forever (Psalm 73:26). The Nephilim were the offspring of the “sons of God” and the “daughters of men,” interpreted either as certain angels who consorted with women or the descendants of Seth who comingled with the daughters of Cain. “You hold my right hand” speaks to guidance. It’s not often that life after death in God’s presence is stated so clearly in the Old Testament. Can you say with Asaph in v. 25 – “Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. We all have doubts and questions at times. It’s not hard to tell what’s in your heart. Moreover, Psalm 73:28 also repeats the important theme of God’s nearness (Ps 34:18) and the key refuge metaphor (Ps 34:8, 22). ( Psalm 73:25–26) The deepest desires of the redeemed heart perhaps find no truer expression than in the words of Psalm 73:23–28. I saw that proud and sinful people were doing well. ), Come to Jesus and find rest. The book of Job is all about Job and his friends having to come to grips first with the possibility that a person might suffer illness or indignity but not as a result of sin and then by extension that wicked people prosper despite their evil. If we are honest with ourselves, we will admit that we at times have been guilty of the same envy. 4For they have no pangs until death; their bodies are fat and sleek. —Psalm 73:25-26. It is just as wrong to add to the Word of God as it is to take away from it. If he was the penman of them (as many think), we rightly call them psalms of Asaph. Asaph does not deny God’s goodness to Israel and those who are pure in … This Psalm is for the discouraged and doubters. And then, Jesus’ question: among the priest, the Levite, and the Samaritan, who proved to be the neighbor to the Israelite who fell among the robbers (Luke 10:36)? Why do the wicked prosper and the righteous suffer? 499 | 07.26 | Who Is My Neighbor? But often the exact opposite is the case, the wicked prosper and the righteous suffer lack. Weekly. Whether Asaph has material wealth or prosperity, God is with him. Whom have I in heaven but you? Asaph sees that reality is not that simple. The real point is that God is near. We could endlessly speculate regarding the nature of the Nephilim and what made them the “mighty men of renown,” but to no avail, for we know nothing else about them from Scripture beyond what has been described above. Homer and others told the stories of what the Greeks deemed the Golden Age, the age of the heroes, Hercules, Jason, Theseus, Achilles, Agamemnon, Hector, Ajax, and the rest. The psalm took center stage in the story of Uncle Tom’s Cabin, too, in the black struggle against slavery, and you’ll soon see why. In His beauty the desire for other things is dissipated and drained of force and power within the human heart. We may know the kingdom of grace is set up in our hearts — by havingtrue desires after God. Psalm 73 is packed with good teaching, and that on several topics, including the question – “How can God allows the wicked to prosper?”. God, on the other hand, is a consuming fire (Deuteronomy 4:24, Hebrews 12:29). But he, desiring to justify himself, said unto Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” (Luke 10:29). Oct 4, 2016. Psalm 23 is justly famous, providing a comforting message often used in funerals. Spiritual Manna is a weekly devotional published by Ethan Longhenry to encourage you in your spiritual life. Change ). He begins with a statement of faith about God’s goodness. They stand apart from the generations of men and women who followed. Matthew 11:28-30, The church struggles with prejudice. Your email address will not be published. He did not ask who his neighbor was; by common agreement, the priest and Levite were both neighbors by virtue of being fellow Israelites in close geographic proximity. God had anointed David’s head with oil and his cup overflowed: while David was anointed by Samuel at YHWH’s behest to be made king in 1 Samuel 16:13, both images here refer more to abundant prosperity from God’s hands (“anointed” is literally “to make fat” in the Hebrew; cf. For he that sings praise, not only praises, but only praises with gladness: he that sings praise, not only sings, but also loves him of whom he sings. The prophetic retelling of Israel’s story is a warning for future generations to avoid the idolatry and rebellion which led to judgment and exile. Thus it was not difficult for David to speak of YHWH as his shepherd (Psalm 23:1). They jeer, using words to kill; they bully their way with words. It is not about what we profess. The only unalloyed “hero” in the Hebrew Bible is YHWH. But what is Psalm 23 supposed to be about? Her greatest fault is in speaking explicitly what is most often maintained implicitly, with coded language and an attempted bifurcation between certain political ideologies and spiritual realities. The stumbling block for him, and for many though-out the ages is why God allows this injustice to go on. Their end is “ruin” and “destruction” under God’s judgment. 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