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When All Seems Lost

There are days when we look around and it seems as though the Enemy has won. That's the way Asaph felt when he wrote Psalm 79.

He looked around and saw defilement. "Oh God, the nations have come into Your inheritance; Your holy temple they have defiled; they have laid Jerusalem in heaps" (v. 1). Asaph refers to the destruction of the temple and the city of Jerusalem. We, too, can look around today and see defilement in people's minds and hearts.

Then Asaph saw death. "The dead bodies of Your servants they have given as food for the birds of the heavens.... Their blood they have shed like water all around Jerusalem" (vv. 2,3). Our world is basically a cemetery. The wages of sin is death. We see it wherever we look.

Asaph also saw derision. "We have become a reproach to our neighbors, a scorn and derision to those who are around us" (v. 4). People today don't magnify the Lord; they laugh at Him. They laugh at the Church, at God's people. We are a derided people because so often it looks as though we are losing and they have won the battle.

Finally, Asaph saw the enemy devouring. "For they have devoured Jacob, and laid waste his dwelling place" (v. 7). Yes, the devouring, destroying hand of Satan was at work. But Asaph says, "Help us, O God of our salvation." Why? "For the glory of Your name; and deliver us" (v. 9). How? "And provide atonement for our sins, for Your name's sake!" Asaph isn't concerned so much about his own comfort as he is about God's glory. So he prays, "Help us."

God helps by purging us from our sins. In addition, verses 11 and 12 tell us that He will come and save us. How wonderful that day will be when Jesus Christ comes to deliver us! Meanwhile, in the world we see defilement, death, derision, destruction and devouring. Now is the time to cry and say, "O God, for the glory of Your name, help us do Your will."

* * *

Satan is at work in the world, but one day God will be glorified, and He will deliver His people from this world. God promises to be with you and to be your Salvation. Rest on that promise.

Baker Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group ( Used by permission. All rights to this material are reserved. Material is not to be reproduced, scanned, copied, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission from Baker Publishing Group.

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