Sunday, January 24, 2016

365 Blessings- January 24

"They will be mine," says the LORD Almighty, "in the day when I make up my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as in compassion a man spares his son who serves him. And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not. (Malachi 3:17, 18) 

These verses speak of the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not. The distinction may not be immediately apparent what with the wicked seemingly being blessed and the righteous suffering. The psalmist Asaph seemed troubled by such thoughts: But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold. For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. They have no struggles; their bodies are healthy and strong. They are free from the burdens common to man; they are not plagued by human ills. Therefore pride is their necklace; they clothe themselves with violence. From their callous hearts comes iniquity ; the evil conceits of their minds know no limits. They scoff, and speak with malice; in their arrogance they threaten oppression. Their mouths lay claim to heaven, and their tongues take possession of the earth. (Psalm 73:2-9)

Sometimes thoughts like these trouble many believers. Why are the wicked prospering while they are suffering in some ways. As Malachi wrote...the distinction will be clear only at God's appointed time. Then the righteous or them who serve God will be his treasured possession and the wicked will be judged with eternal punishment.

Asaph was troubled because of the prosperity of the wicked. He said, Surely in vain have I kept my heart pure; in vain have I washed my hands in innocence. All day long I have been plagued; I have been punished every morning. When I tried to understand all this, it was oppressive to me (Psalm 73:13, 14, 16)

Asaph's doubts about God's righteousness were cleared when he entered God's sanctuary and his spiritual eyes were opened. He then understood the final destiny of the wicked. So he sang, "Surely you place them on slippery ground; you cast them down to ruin. How suddenly are they destroyed, completely swept away by terrors! (Psalm 73:18, 19)

Always remember, the prosperity of the wicked or those who do not serve God are only temporary, but you as a child of God are his "treasured possession" and will remain like that forever.

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