The Pain of Spiritual Progress

Psalm 123:4  Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorning of those that are at ease, and with the contempt of the proud.

The soul is a sponge, absorbing all that life throws at it, and determining what to do with it.  In this instance, King David writes about the soul of a nation who is filled with the “scorning” of “those that are at ease”.  The language indicates that there are those (be they foreign or domestic) who, for whatever reasons, assume positions of pride and arrogance while looking down on Israel from their lofty points of view.  The idea is that the scornful assume superiority over the scorned and thus hold them in contempt, despising their very existence.

Now, what could it be that so disturbs those who are “at ease” that they would hold Israel in contempt?  Although the immediate historical context of Psalm 123 may be debatable, one thing is sure; any time there is spiritual pursuit of God almighty, such as seems to be the case in this song of degrees (also known as one of the Songs of Ascent), there is always going to be those who are too comfortable in their spiritual apathy to be bothered by a stir of any kind that disrupts their assumed positions of having arrived.

Songs of Ascent were likely sung by the Israelites as they ascended to Jerusalem for their annual festivals, such as the Passover, Pentecost, and/or the Feast of Tabernacles.  In our days, we might call them annual revivals!  But for those “at ease”, who in their blind arrogance saw no need for change or a movement closer to The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, this was too much for them to take.

And so it is today.  The closer you get to God, the more those who are living in apathy will hold you in contempt!  I encourage you today to make your appeal to God and leave it be!  God knows who wants Him!

~ Pastor Gary Caudill

 
Psalm 123