In the last post, we saw how we can easily fall into believing a subtle prosperity gospel in the midst of trial. In these moments, we need to take these struggles to the same place Asaph took them: directly to God. Psalm 73:16-17 states, “But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed a wearisome task, until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end.”
In the sanctuary of God, Asaph was reminded of the truths that he almost lost:
God is Sovereign: truly you set them in slippery places (v.18)
While Asaph isn’t given the specific reasons for his sufferings and the prosperity of the wicked, he is reminded that God is neither unaware or unable. When you suffer trials, you are not promised the reasons God has for them. These are the secret things that belong only to him. But you can take comfort in the truth that the Father who loves you knows and acts in accord with his perfect will.
God is Just: “…you make them fall to ruin. How they are destroyed in a moment…” (v.18b-19)
The wicked may be prosperous, but not eternally so. Their prosperity and comfort is as fleeting as the vapor of their life. A day will come when all will stand before God in judgment. God’s justice is inevitable, even if it doesn’t fit our timeline.
God is Enough: “Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (v.25-26)
Asaph realizes that the greatest treasure he could ever have is the only treasure he could never lose: God himself. Trials serve the sanctifying purpose of reminding us of what is eternal. When your eternal treasure is Christ you are freed to worship God fully, even in the midst of pain and despair.
When you find yourself in a trial wrestling with weighty questions about the character of God, take comfort in the fact that Asaph’s feet almost slipped (v.2), but never did. He never slipped because God was holding his hand (v.23), guiding him (v.22), and strengthening him (v.26).
Such holding, guiding, and strengthening is yours and mine in Christ Jesus.