Devotion 253 – Tuesday of Pentecost 2

Text: Psalm 73:23–28

Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish; You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry. 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.

Devotion

No matter how long the glory of the ungodly lasts, be assured it has a miserable end.  – We do not expect to see truth and justice prevail in the present course of this world. We know very well that lying will prosper, adorn itself with the name of truth, and trod the saints underfoot as enemies of happiness. Yet we have a hard time accepting this. Our heart becomes embittered and our feet grow weary from the journey of faith and patience. But God’s Word gives us light and strength. It teaches us that visible things are temporal, but the invisible are eternal, and that all the world’s glory is nothing compared to our fellowship with God and our heavenly salvation. Temptation’s way is to create a poisonous thought: “How does God know? And is there knowledge in the Most High” (Psa 73:11)? Can there be a righteous God who rules thus? But when we enter into the sanctuary of the Word and from there look out over heaven and earth, we discern God’s will and plan enough that we become silent and rejoice. We may be trodden under, yet our justice and fortune are intact! Through suffering we learn patience; through temptation, we obtain victory! So we have no reason to be troubled over those who let themselves be deceived by the devil. For that is tragic, that people, who are created for loving fellowship with God and are unhappy without Him, regard His revelation as foolishness and eternal life as a lie!

O child of God, you are continually before the Lord. He Himself holds you with His right hand, with His almighty power. Think about it! It will strengthen your faith. He leads you with His counsel. Then all is well, even if it goes differently than you would expect. Could you wish for something better than to be led by the counsel of Him who is eternal wisdom? Then He receives you into glory. You are chosen and anointed for this. What does the scorn and oppression of the world mean? Your portion is in heaven, your life is in God. Let flesh and heart languish; let things be worse for you than for anyone else ever. Love is strong, and does not die, does not let go. God is eternally the same, but He is in you and you are in Him. How can you perish? He is the rock of your salvation and your blessed reward. Such love is loved in return and is purified through temptation, and so everything must work for good for those who love God.

Closing Prayer

Lord, let me always remain with You. Hold me by Your right hand, and be the portion of my heart forever. Amen.

Hymn

I will sing my Maker’s praises
And in Him most joyful be,
For in all things I see traces
Of His tender love to me.
Nothing else than love could move Him
With such sweet and tender care
Evermore to raise and bear
All who try to serve and love Him.
All things else have but their day,
God’s great love abides for aye.

As an eagle spreadeth over
Her young brood her sheltering wings,
So the arm of God did cover
Me against affliction’s stings.
He who life and being gave me,
Even in my mother’s womb,
From the cradle to the tomb
He shall ever guard and save me.
All things else have but their day,
God’s great love abides for aye.

Gerhardt: L 459.1-2 ELH 448:1 and ELHB 65:2 tr. Composite;
tune: Sollt ich meinem Gott

0 Comments

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.