Is everything bleak?

O God, why have You cast us off for ever?

Why does Your anger smoke against the sheep of Your pasture?”

The poet is despairing.

In disaster we ask WHY!!!

Job asked why. God didn’t tell Him why. That’s what many think.

But didn’t God say it was so Job could see God?

Believers faith has been tested through the centuries

by war

by famine,

by plague

by pestilence,

by all the miseries of humanity

by our personal decline and aging bodies.

We wrestle in prayer with our problems.

The poet prays:

Remember You congregation, You have purchased;

Your inheritance, which You have redeemed

Psalm 74:2

the enemy has done wickedly in the sanctuary

Psalm 74:3

It’s weird. Everything is closed and buttoned up

We run around with our heads covered

It’s haunting

Has God abandoned us to nutty politics

Your enemies roar in the middle of Your congregations:

they set up their placards for signs.

Psalms 74:4

Our cities are filled with rioting and shouting thieves

The media cheers them. The politicians rationalize and encourage them.

The prisons are being emptied of criminals.

And God appears silent.

His faithful are reduced to speechless impotence

They’re saying, Let us destroy this country:

they want to burn up all the gathering places of GOD in the land.

They want to burn down the courts

They want to destroy the civil authorities

Rotherham renders that:

“They have said in their heart, We will force them down altogether!

They have caused to cease all the worship of God in the land.”

Phillips notes:

The real plan was to bring an utter end to the worship of the living God.

That is Satan’s master plan.

It is always Satan’s strategy to get into the sanctuary if he can.

He worked, in history by destroying the Hebrew monarchy,

He tempted the Kings of old with lives of debauchery

He ruined the temple worship. He twisted the priests and the Pharisees

Into money mongers.

He’s the corrupter of politicians and pastors.

“Know you not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?”

“If any man defile the temple of God him will God destroy.”

Twice, Jesus cleansed the temple

Each time the money changers, the merchants, the Sanhedrin

with its vested interests brushed aside Christ’s cleansing work.

Satan uses everything in his arsenal to foul the sanctuary.

So God pulls it down. He brought the legions of Rome, to burn the temple down.

But why? They had reject their Messiah

But what about us?

The believers body is the Holy Spirit’s temple;

Satan would like to see that temple defiled.

He gloats to wreck and ruin our temple.

He delights to find God’s home, the dwelling place of God’s eternal Holy Spirit,

defiled and then destroyed.

We’re surrounded by Confusion  

“We see not our signs: there is no more any prophet:

neither is there among us any that knows how long.”

Psalms 74:9

Jeremiah is dead.

Ezekiel’s voice is stilled.

Daniel is gone

Those who have brought us to faith in Jesus

Our mentors who have encouraged us in the faith

Our giant of faith who prayed for us have gone to their eternal rest

No seers. That’s part of our frustration

Are we ignorant of the Scripture!  Are we mining the Book for it’s riches

We’re viewing a disastrous situation

We’re surrounded with intellectual unbelief

We’re pummeled with fake news, fake science, fake leaders and fake solutions

Why? Why? How long?

“No signs!”

When calamities come we need God’s voice for signs,

Why is  God Delaying

“O God, how long will the adversary reproach?

Will the enemy blaspheme Your name for ever?”

Psalms 74:10

“Why do You withdraw Your hand, even Your right hand?

Pluck it out of Your bosom.”

Psalms 74:11

Smite down Your foes? So our faith wrestles.

Is God that far away. Are God’s miraculous interventions past?

Where’s the God who humbled Pharoah?

Where’s the God who turned Egypt to dust?

The poet is wracked with questions.

Just a minute the poet rehearses:

“For God is our King of old, working salvation in all around the earth.”

Psalms 74:12

God is our King.

This desolation and disaster. Our temple laying in ruins,

We are each as believers individually a temple of God

We corporately gather our temples together and Jesus promises His presences in us

God is still God, He is still King, He is working out salvation.

So are we shut down. Are we shut out over coughing throats and runny noses?

We have fellow believers hiding in their homes. Terrified of a virus

A man was famous according as he had lifted up axes upon the thick trees.

But now they break down the carved work thereof at once with axes and hammers

Psalm 74:5–6

We have lavish architecture. Men who were famous who built this country.

They used great trees to built amazing structures

Our principles of law and justice built by skilled students of God’s voice.

But now vandals were hewing down the carved work and hauling away souvenirs

of their destruction.

The poet laments as he remembers the carving in the temple of palm trees and open flowers

1 Kings 6:29

Riot is wasteful and destructive.

The hacking up of everything by haters.

The wanton smashing to pieces statues that we’re a joy of memories of great leaders.

The desecration and wholesale burning.

Our Sarcasm mingles with our sobs.

Then the poets eyes are opened.

I went into the sanctuary of GOD, then understood I their end

Psalm 73:17–19

We take our problems into the presence of God.

Into the sanctuary

In Christ things get their right perspective.

This present life is not all there is.

There is our life to come

“How could we be so blind?”

In prayer our eyes are opened.

We see the treacherous domain of hating rejectors:

“Surely You set them in slippery places:

You cast them down into destruction.

How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment!

They are utterly consumed with terrors.

Retribution at times stalks the wicked openly.

But there are times when the syndicated crime of politicians and their

Useful idiots seem to get away with everything,

Times where all live in constant fear, the police are being downsized.

There’s treachery, gang-style murder, and general mayhem and corrupt politicians.

The weirdest people command vast wealth, most of it derived from pandering to human lust,

They make riches by based on our ridiculous weaknesses for instant gratification,

This adds to our misery.

They are intoxicated with their ruthless power,

They live behind locked doors of fenced castles, guarded by henchmen whose

loyalty is often for sale.

But God writes through the poet that they are in slippery places.

We need our eyes opened to that

As a dream when one wakes up; so, O Lord, when You awake,

You will despise their image

Psalm 73:20–22

The wealth and wickedness of the ungodly rich will dissolve like a slug drenched in salt

They will be exposed by the light, like a dream at the rising of the sun.

They are an illusion really in the perspective of eternity.

Our heart is grieved, we are pricked in our inner being.

We were foolish, we were ignorant: we were acting like a beast in front of God

Psalms 73:22 

A lack of faith makes fools of us.

Doubting God fills us with regrets

The psalmist uses the word “behemoth,” a big, blundering hippopotamus.

We often feel like big dumb blunderers

The poet prays:

Have respect to Your promises:

for the dark places of the earth are full of people of cruelty.

The rioters are like disguised demons,

They want savage laws and moral debauchery,

God’s promises are unconditional.

We’re to exercise praying faith

O let not the oppressed be ashamed:

let the poor and needy praise Your name.

Psalms 74:21

Overthrow our oppressors.

When we can start praising God, no matter what the present circumstances,

it means we have already begun to rise above the circumstances.

Keep reminding the Lord of the incessant and increasing opposition of the ungodly

Arise, O God, plead Your own cause:

remember how fools man reproach You daily.

Forget not the voice of Your enemies:

the rioting tumult of those that rise up against You increases continually

Psalms 74:22–23

We pray that God defends Himself!

We cry Lord! We are Your temple

Don’t let Satan into Your house!!!

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