“Psalm 73 contains one of the most rhapsodic [emotionally expressive] and uplifting passages in the whole Psalter, and, indeed, there is hardly need for anything beyond letting their rhythms and sentiments sink into our souls.” So writes Alec Motyer in Psalms By the Day, which I lifted from my side table again this morning. These words, in particular, fed my soul:
“Asaph [the writer of Psalm 73] is weighing things in the balance: what can he reckon in his favour as compared with the ‘wellbeing’ of the ungodly which so troubled him. There are, indeed, things which we find in our heavenly ‘balance sheet’ — and which we should constantly prize.
- First and foremost is peace with God (v. 23a), that we are constantly accepted, welcomed, retained in his presence. ‘Peace with God’, and firstfruits of Calvary (John 20:19), our unchangeable inheritance in Jesus.
- Then there is security in his keeping — he who has gripped us by our hands (v. 23b). Recall Matthew 14:31 and John 10:28-29.
- Thirdly, there is the problem of ‘the future all unknown’. To us who cannot foresee what the end of this morning will bring, there is the comfort that everything that happens does so in conformity to and by direction of his ‘counsel’ (v. 24a).
What is impenetrable to us (the future) is an already drawn map lying before him (Ephesians 1:3-4; 2:10; Philippians 1:29-30). We can never over-exalt the sovereignty of God: he is truly God — the God in charge. And we need to remind ourselves that this is even especially so when things turn out either other than we expect or would wish. He is always on our side; always implementing his ‘counsel’. All this is a store of pure gold entered in our account; yet the finest gold is yet to come.”