Why Do the Wicked Prosper? (Psalm 73)

This first psalm in Book Three of the psalms is attributed to Asaph.  He opens the psalm by speaking of God’s goodness to Israel, but his own envy of the prosperity of the wicked.  He declares that they do not have pain in death, nor in trouble, they have abundance, and win at most of their ventures.  Because of the supposed success of the wicked, the people of God wonder if He will help them, if He even knows they are in need of Him.  This consternation sent Asaph into the sanctuary of God.  When he sought God in prayer, he realized that the feet of the wicked are in slippery places, and they are doomed to destruction.  He realized that he had worried and complained in vain, that God had His eye on His people, guiding them that they might eventually receive glory.  He then declares that the Lord is his strength, and that He will draw near to God and put his trust in Him.

It is difficult to see evil men and women prosper and find fame while many who serve the Lord seem to languish in mediocrity and even poverty.  The scale seems to be unbalanced at times.  Some never seem to get ahead on this earth.  While the blessing of abundance is the birthright of the righteous, it is extremely important to remember that the true riches associated with the life of the redeemed are heavenly in nature.  The glorious reward of being in relationship with Christ may not be fully realized until our passage into eternity.  So, don’t fret over unsaved moguls and sheiks, robber barons and drug dealers.  Don’t moan over the fact that evil people have private jets and expensive cars.  Instead, remember the holy rewards of a Righteous God.  When we stop worrying about what others have, God can show us what is truly ours already!

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