17Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end. [simple_tooltip content=’1 Truly God is good to Israel,
To such as are pure in heart.

2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled;
My steps had nearly slipped.

3 For I was envious of the boastful,
When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

4 For there are no pangs in their death,
But their strength is firm.

5 They are not in trouble as other men,
Nor are they plagued like other men.

6 Therefore pride serves as their necklace;
Violence covers them like a garment.

7 Their eyes bulge with abundance;
They have more than heart could wish.

8 They scoff and speak wickedly concerning oppression;
They speak loftily.

9 They set their mouth against the heavens,
And their tongue walks through the earth.

10 Therefore his people return here,
And waters of a full cup are drained by them.

11 And they say, “How does God know?
And is there knowledge in the Most High?”

12 Behold, these are the ungodly,
Who are always at ease;
They increase in riches.

13 Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain,
And washed my hands in innocence.

14 For all day long I have been plagued,
And chastened every morning.

15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
Behold, I would have been untrue to the generation of Your children.

16 When I thought how to understand this,
It was too painful for me—

17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God;
Then I understood their end.

18 Surely You set them in slippery places;
You cast them down to destruction.

19 Oh, how they are brought to desolation, as in a moment!
They are utterly consumed with terrors.

20 As a dream when one awakes,
So, Lord, when You awake,
You shall despise their image.

21 Thus my heart was grieved,
And I was vexed in my mind.

22 I was so foolish and ignorant;
I was like a beast before You.

23 Nevertheless I am continually with You;
You hold me by my right hand.

24 You will guide me with Your counsel,
And afterward receive me to glory.

25 Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.

26 My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

27 For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish;
You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry.

28 But it is good for me to draw near to God;
I have put my trust in the Lord GOD,
That I may declare all Your works.’](Psalm 73:1-28)[/simple_tooltip]


This Psalm was confusing to me until I spent some time studying it and praying about it. Then I saw that it expresses the feelings every true child of God has felt at one time or another. In the first sixteen verses, Asaph lamented the prosperity of the wicked. He said that it looked like evil people were getting away with sin. They seemed to prosper and not have the worries that godly people like himself had. Sound familiar?

In our society today, the only people who can be discriminated against are Christians. Every value we hold dear is being assaulted, and if we speak out we are called bigots and labeled intolerant. Immorality isn’t only practiced—it’s flaunted! Television programs, movies, newspapers, magazines, and books are filled with pictures of immoral acts. The people who influence us the most are, as a whole, the most immoral people in the nation; yet they receive infinitely more money and attention than the people who are godly. It’s been said that character is no longer an issue in politics. At times, as we read what our governmental leaders say and do, it appears that way.

This Psalm reveals that their seeming prosperity is only temporary. In the end their sin “will find them out” [simple_tooltip content=’But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out.’](Num. 32:23)[/simple_tooltip]. Payday is coming. There is a reward for the godly and a punishment for the ungodly. Our responsibility as believers is not to hate and despise the ungodly; we are to pray for them and continue telling them the truth about salvation through Jesus Christ.

Take a lesson from Asaph today, and look at the ungodly through the eyes of your Savior. Then you will be able to love them, forgive them, and be a powerful witness of the truth to them.