Nothing on Earth

  • Tuesday, July 26, 2011
  • “It’s a beautiful morning… God is good.”

    “We had a great vacation… God is so good.”

    “I just learned I have cancer…. God is good…”

    We use the phrase “God is good” often, and we should for God IS good. But what do we really mean when we say it? Have you ever heard someone share a tragedy, disappointment, or crisis and then follow it up with “God is so good” ??

    One of the great worship leaders of Israel, Asaph, penned several Psalms. Psalm 73 is his “confession and crisis of faith” that laments, “God is good, BUT the wicked prospers, and sin abounds!”

    Asaph lived where many of us live… our nation and world is plagued with sin. In fact, immorality is lifted up and celebrated by our society. Those who live as if they have no fear of God seem to do quite well, thank you very much!

    “For I was envious of the arrogant, as I saw the prosperity of the wicked.” [Psalm 73:3]

    Asaph surveyed the sin and success of the wicked and asked, “Where is God’s goodness in that?”

    …How does God know? And is there knowledge with the Most High?” Behold, these are the wicked; and always at ease, they have increased in wealth. [Psalm 73:11-12]

    Our heads are turned by the “wicked wealth” and “success of sin” and we may even be envious! Our heart slips as did Asaph’s… Is our devotion to God in vain???

    “Surely in vain I have kept my heart pure…” [Psalm 73:13a]

    This leader of worship candidly confesses a crisis of faith…

    When my heart was embittered, and I was pierced within, then I was senseless and ignorant; I was like a beast before Thee. [Psalm 73:21-22]

    Instead of living Biblically, we live as a beast, an animal driven by carnal instinct without thought…

    God is good… really??

    Asaph reminds himself (and us) that the answer is still YES…

    Nevertheless I am continually with Thee; Thou hast taken hold of my right hand. With Thy counsel Thou wilt guide me, and afterward receive me to glory. [Psalm 73:23-24]

    God’s takes hold of my right hand to guide. While God’s presence gives us the hope we need in the midst of the struggles of life, it does not answer the ‘why’ question. Trust is our being satisfied with that!

    Psalm 73 is written as Asaph looks back and reflects on this ‘journey of crisis’. He begins and ends with declaring that God is good…

    Psalm 73:1 – Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart!

    Psalm 73:28 – But as for me, the nearness of God is my good; I have made the Lord GOD my refuge, that I may tell of all Thy works.

    God is good because of who He is!

    Goodness is not what we have, but who we have…

    My good is the nearness of God…

    Whom have I in heaven but Thee? And besides Thee, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. [Psalm 73:25-26] 

    Jer. 17:7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD and whose trust is the LORD.


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