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Whose Side Are You On? By Joe Stowell

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1 Whose Side Are You On? By Joe Stowell on Wed Dec 03, 2014 5:05 pm

LesBrewer

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Whose Side Are You On? By Joe Stowell


Read: Psalm 73

It is good for me to draw near to God. —Psalm 73:28




In the heat of the American Civil War, one of President Lincoln’s advisors said he was grateful that God was on the side of the Union. Lincoln replied, “Sir, my concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God’s side, for God is always right.”

What a great challenge for us who assume that God is there to support our plans, our perspectives, our decisions, and our desires. However, Lincoln’s reply reminds us that even our best plans may not be near to what God desires.

Clearly the psalmist wants to be on God’s side when he pleads, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; . . . and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Ps. 139:23-24). When we follow the psalmist’s example to “draw near to God” (73:28), we can be certain that we are on His side, as His Spirit helps us measure every thought and action by His ways that are always right.

So, let’s ask ourselves: Are we on the Lord’s side? Being on His side means that we will reflect His love to the world around us in the way we interact with others. We will forgive, treat others justly, and seek peace. God’s ways are always best.
Father, teach us to search Your ways so that we may
know how to be on Your side of the critical issues in
life. Thank You that when we draw near to You, You
draw near to us with gifts of wisdom and discernment.
When you draw near to God, you are sure to be on His side.


Insight

Embittered by the prosperity of the wicked and his own suffering, Asaph complained of life’s unfairness. When reminded of God’s presence, providence, and provision in his life (Ps. 73:23-26) and the punishment awaiting the wicked (vv.18-19,27), Asaph reaffirmed his trust in God and drew near to Him (v.28).


.....................................................................................


Psalm 73 King James Version (KJV)

73 Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart.

2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped.

3 For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

4 For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm.

5 They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men.

6 Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.

7 Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish.

8 They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily.

9 They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.

10 Therefore his people return hither: and waters of a full cup are wrung out to them.

11 And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?

12 Behold, these are the ungodly, who prosper in the world; they increase in riches.

13 Verily I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency.

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

15 If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I should offend against the generation of thy children.

16 When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me;

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

18 Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction.

19 How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! they are utterly consumed with terrors.

20 As a dream when one awaketh; so, O Lord, when thou awakest, thou shalt despise their image.

21 Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins.

22 So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.

23 Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand.

24 Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.

25 Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.

26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

27 For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee.

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 thy works.



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