20/20 Vision: Seeing Life from God’s Perspective
Psalm 73 (Part 2)
I. The Complaint of the Psalmist (73:1-14) . . . and the Danger of Discontent
A. Eyeing and Envying; Slipping and Stumbling (vv.1-3)
B. Fixating on the Prosperity of the Wicked (vv.4-12)
W-wealthy I-idolized C-cocky K- E-evil-doers D-“Don’t worry; be happy!”
C. His distorted conclusion: “It’s vain to serve God!” (vv.13-14)
II. The Choices Before the Psalmist (73:15-17)
Three options: Treachery (v.15) . . . Turmoil (v.16) . . . the Temple (v.17).
III. The Correction of the Psalmist’s Vision (73:18-28)
A. A Fresh Perspective on the Wicked (vv.18-20)
B. A fresh Perspective on His Envying and Discontent (vv.21-22)
C. A fresh Perspective on the Incomparable Goodness of God to Him (vv.23-26)
1. God’s Undeserved Care –Gripped, Guided, and Gorified (vv.23-24)
2. God’s immeasurable Worth (vv.25-26)
D. “20/20 Vision” Restored (vv.27-28)
“People who neglect attendance at the house of God are not only being unscriptural – let me put it bluntly – they are fools. My experience in the ministry has taught me that those who are least regular in their attendance are the ones who are most troubled by problems and perplexities… It is a very foolish Christian who does not attend the sanctuary of God as often as he possibly can.”—Martyn Lloyd-Jones
“We were made to know and treasure the glory of God above all things; and when we trade that treasure for images, everything is disordered. The sun of God’s glory was made to shine at the center of the solar system of our soul. And when it does, all the planets of our life are held in their proper orbit. But when the sun is displaced, everything flies apart. The healing of the soul begins by restoring the glory of God to its flaming, all-attracting place at the center.”—John Piper, Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ
“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.”—Psalm 73:25-26
“All the promises of God find their Yes in [Christ Jesus].”—2 Cor 1:20
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made…
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth… No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.”—J John 1:1-3, 14, 18
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.’
No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.” —Revelation 21:3-4; 22:3-5
“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul?”—Mark 8:34-37
“Be appalled, O heavens; be shocked… for my people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water.”—Jeremiah 2:12-13
“The Puritans loved the Bible, and dug into it in depth. Also, they loved the Lord Jesus, who is of course the Bible’s focal figure; they circled round him, centred on him, studied minutely all that Scripture had to say about him, and constantly, conscientiously, exalted him in their preaching, praises, and prayers…
Just here, however, there lies – or maybe I should say we have, or perhaps even we are – a problem. To put it pictorially, souls are small in the modern Western world, and we have less of an appetite for this kind of nourishment than our spiritual health requires. We would do well to ask ourselves some questions.
Have we ever, up to now, worked our way through any book that fully displays our Saviour as the brightest lights in the [Puritan tradition] have viewed him? Here is such a book: are we interested?
Have we ever formed the holy habit of contemplating Jesus in solitude, allowing Scripture passage after Scripture passage to show us his many-sided glory and to draw us out in the many-angled adoration that is our proper response? This book will help us form that habit…
Do we constantly acknowledge the presence of Christ, who through the Holy Spirit keeps his promise to be with us always, whether we cherish his gracious and triumphant companionship or not? This book will help us to possess our possession at this point.”— Mark Jones, Foreward from Knowing Christ by J.I. Packard