Summary: Message 4 of 4 on tough questions. This message is based on Psalms 73
Tough Questions ï¿½ Real Answers
Why Isn’t God Fair?
May 6, 2007
If God is good, shouldnï¿½t we receive more ï¿½goodï¿½ things in our life?
1 Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.
2 But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold.
A few years ago a young man named Jason Brookins, a GB Packer made a huge mistake.
He misinterpreted the Packersï¿½ request for his playbook. Jason thought that that was their way of telling him he was cut from the team so he turned in his playbook, jumped in his car and began the long drive to his home in Missouri. He was so despondent that he turned off his cell phone and no one could reach him.
But his perception was wrong. The Packers had no intention of releasing him. His name was on a list asking for him to turn in his playbook so that it could be updated in time for the next practice.
Itï¿½s so easy for us to get out of touch with what is real. When we lose our perspective of reality, we can say and do some pretty crazy things.
Our perception of reality will always affect our response to reality. I wonder if some of you may have lost your spiritual equilibrium as a result of some faulty perceptions.
One of the ways we can have a faulty perception of reality is by not having all the informationï¿½ and that includes the facts about life and what is fair and what isnï¿½t.
One of the major issues for all people, in all cultures, societies, backgrounds and times is the inequities of life. Life just isnï¿½t fair. God isnï¿½t fair.
Today Iï¿½d like to introduce you to the 73rd Psalm. Itï¿½s important enough that Iï¿½d like you to open your Bibles to it and read it with me this morning. Iï¿½ve also would like you to get out a pen and use the the sheet in the bulletin to take down some notes.
The 73rd Psalm was written by a man named Asaph.
We donï¿½t know a lot about him but he was a mature, godly man who served as the worship leader in the temple. Asaph wrote 12 different Psalms.
He was a man of God yet here in this psalm we see a men who was ready to hand in his playbook and head for home. He almost walked away from because his perception of reality was mixed up.
This psalm is very personal, and filled with gut-wrenching honesty. In it Asaph asks the question that many of us have asked at one time or another: If God is supposed to bless believers, why do we struggle with health, finances, and relational turmoil while the unbelievers around us seem to enjoy prosperity? Or, we could ask it this way, ï¿½Why are the wicked successful while the righteous suffer?ï¿½
Asaph begins with an introduction, a summary statement, and a theological conclusion all wrapped up in verse 1: ï¿½Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.ï¿½
Asaph is stating the universal premise for the believer: God is good.
The word ï¿½surelyï¿½ literally means ï¿½yetï¿½ and also has the idea of exclusivity: ï¿½No matter what happens, God and God alone is good.ï¿½
While we can count on this certainty, itï¿½s also the crux of the problem.
Shouldnï¿½t we at least have more blessings than those who donï¿½t even care about God?
The Human Perspective
After stating what he knows is ultimately true, Asaph looks around and from a human perspective wonders what is going on in the first half of the psalm. He was bothered by what he had been taught in Scripture because what he had experienced in life was radically different.
In verse 2, he admits that he had almost ï¿½slipped.ï¿½ This verse stands in stark contrast to the certainty of verse 1: ï¿½But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold.ï¿½ God, you might be good, but I almost bailed on you. Asaph felt like he was trying to walk on moss-covered rocks in a lake. He came very, very close to losing his confidence in Godï¿½s goodness because of four things that he saw around him.
The Prosperity of the Wicked
3 For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
Verse 3 tells us why Asaph almost went spiritually AWOL: ï¿½For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.ï¿½
The word ï¿½arrogantï¿½ comes from a root word that means a loud and clear noise. The idea is that a proud person is one who toots his own horn real loud. Itï¿½s also used of the braying of a donkey.