When Life Seems Unfair

Daily Bible Reading – Hosea 10-12; Psalm 73; Hebrews 4

Today’s Key Passage – Psalm 73


At some point in our lives, we have all cried out the familiar phrase, “That is not fair!”  I can remember saying it as a child and I know I have thought it and said it as an adult.  As human beings, we naturally like to believe that things should always work out fairly.  The wicked should be punished immediately, and the righteous should be rewarded immediately.  Anything less just seems unfair.  One of the greatest lessons my parents ever taught me as a child was that life does not always work out in this way.  In this world, sometimes life seems unfair.  Sometimes the people who cheat and lie are the ones who are most successful (as the world defines success).  Sometimes the righteous people who live their lives in obedience to God face hard times.  While it is little consolation to us in the midst of a “life is not fair” moment, this is not a new problem that only affects our generation.  In fact, the fairness of life has been plaguing human beings for thousands of years.

In today’s key passage, the psalmist Asaph struggles with the fairness of life as he “envied the arrogant when [he] saw the prosperity of the wicked.” (Vs. 3)  Asaph goes through a laundry list of the ways in which the wicked prosper (Vss. 4-12), and decides that, “Surely in vain have I kept my heart pure; in vain have I washed my hands in innocence.” (Vs. 13)  It was not until Asaph consulted with God that he truly came to understand the problem with his thinking. (Vs. 17)  The issue of fairness is really a matter of perspective.  Apart from God, we only have one perspective – our own.  We see the wicked prosper and the righteous suffer and we believe life is unfair.  As we grow closer to God though, we begin to see things from His perspective.  As we get closer to God, we realize that the prosperity of the wicked and the suffering of the righteous is only a temporary condition confined to this world.  Ultimately, the righteous will be rewarded and the wicked will be punished, and these conditions will be eternal.

When facing a “life is not fair” moment, remember to change your perspective.  Instead of focusing on how unfair the world seems today, focus on how fair our perfect world will be in eternity.   Like Asaph (Vss. 23-28), praise God for His presence in this life, and praise Him for his promises of fairness in eternity.

During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you?  Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.

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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.


Posted on July 7, 2013, in 19 - Psalms and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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