Fight for Joy! Blog
Where Jesus Changes Everything
“But as for me, my feet came close to stumbling. My steps had almost slipped. For I was envious of the arrogant as I saw the prosperity of the wicked. When I pondered to understand this, it was troublesome in my sight. Until I came into the sanctuary of God; then I perceived their end” (Psalm 73:2-3, 16-17).
Why does God allow evil and suffering in the world? This is a question we are confronted with everyday. We turn on the news and see images of passenger jets slamming into buildings. We listen to the radio only to learn a sniper has taken yet another innocent life in and around our nation’s capital. We pick up the newspaper and learn of abuse allegations within the Church. We answer the telephone and receive news a loved one has been diagnosed with a terminal illness. We read and hear about the fact that in many parts of the world there are wars, famines, natural catastrophes, and epidemic diseases. It seems that everywhere we look, people are suffering. Furthermore, evil abounds and the evildoers seem to be getting away with the evil they perpetrate. It is no surprise that such evil and suffering and the supposed prosperity of the evildoer causes many to question how a good God can allow such evil and suffering. Such was the case with Asaph, the author of Psalm 73. He begins by saying, “But as for me, my feet came close to stumbling.” Why? Because he was “envious of the arrogant as I saw the prosperity of the wicked.” Like many believers today, Asaph almost lost his confidence in the Lord because he was envious of the prosperity of the wicked. Like most believers, Asaph struggled with why? Why does God seemingly allow the evildoer to prosper while the believer, who seeks to live righteously, suffers? To understand the answer to this question, we must look to eternity.
Our problem is that too often we view the purpose and promises of God in terms of our present personal happiness. However, we fail to realize that the purpose and promises of God are more about the coming of Christ’s kingdom than our individual enjoyment here and now. God’s focus is eternal. Therefore, as believers, we must focus on eternity. For us, life is more about eternity than it is about the here and now. For Asaph, the turning point for him came when he “came into the sanctuary of God.” It was there that his focus began to shift from now to eternity. He came to recognize that God would reward the righteous in eternity and destroy evil and the evildoer. Clearly, eternity makes all the difference. Paul says, “For momentary light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Cor. 4:17-18). This is the Word of the Lord!
I do not know what you are struggling with today. I do not know what losses you have experienced in life. I have no idea what evil you might have experienced. I can only testify to my own experiences. But this I do know, our citizenship is in heaven (1 Peter 1:1), and as believers, our questions will one day be answered. When? When we all get to heaven. Paul put it this way: “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known” (1 Cor. 13:12). I do not understand fully now. However, in eternity I will know fully.
You are welcome to leave comments and you don't have to necessarily agree with me. However, I expect a civil tone and charitable spirit. We can disagree with one another without being disagreeable. "Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt." (Colossians 4:6)
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