Psalm CONTEXT from Treasury of David:
TITLE.A Psalm of Asaph. This is the second Psalm ascribed to Asaph, and the first of eleven consecutive Psalms bearing the name of this eminent singer. Some writers are not sure that Asaph wrote them, but incline to the belief that David was the author, and Asaph the person to whom they were dedicated, that he might sing them when in his turn he became the chief musician. But though our own heart turns in the same direction, facts must be heard; and we find in 2Ch 29:30, that Hezekiah commanded the Levites to sing “the words of David and of Asaph the seer; “and, moreover, in Ne 12:46, David and Asaph are mentioned together, as distinct from “the chief of the singers, “and as it would seem, as joint authors of psalmody. We may, therefore, admit Asaph to be the author of some, if not all, of the twelve Psalms ascribed to him. Often a great star which seems to be but one to the eyes of ordinary observers, turns out upon closer inspection to be of a binary character; so here the Psalms of David are those of Asaph too. The great sun of David has a satellite in the moon of Asaph. By reading our notes on Psalm Fifty, in Volume 2, the reader will glean a little more concerning this man of God.
SUBJECT. Curiously enough this Seventy-third Psalm corresponds in subject with the Thirty-seventh: it will help the memory of the young to notice the reversed figures. The theme is that ancient stumbling block of good men, which Job’s friends could not get over; viz.—the present prosperity of wicked men and the sorrows of the godly. Heathen philosophers have puzzled themselves about this, while to believers it has too often been a temptation.
DIVISION. In Ps 73:1 the psalmist declares his confidence in God, and, as it were, plants his foot on a rock while he recounts his inward conflict. From Ps 73:2-14 he states his temptation; then, from Ps 73:15-17 he is embarrassed as how to act, but ultimately finds deliverance from his dilemma. He describes with awe the fate of the ungodly in Ps 73:18-20, condemns his own folly and adores the grace of God, Ps 73:21-24, and concludes by renewing his allegiance to his God, whom he takes afresh to be his portion and delight.
Looking at today’s text from a theological standpoint there are two main doctrines that immediately come to mind. First, there is only one True God, Whom have I in heaven but you? Second, there is absolutely nothing worthy of desiring on earth compared to that same True God, And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.
Compare some of the quotes on heart’s desire below:
You only have to believe that you can succeed, that you can be whatever your heart desires, be willing to work for it, and you can have it. – Oprah Winfrey
God knows the dreams and desires in your heart; in fact, He gave them to you. He will order your steps and take you where you need to be. – Joel Osteen
Sin is not simply making bad choices or mistakes. Sin is having the desire in our hearts to do the will of the enemy of God. – R. C. Sproul
Unfortunately, preachers who distort God’s Word are all too common today. Sometimes this springs from a sincere desire to soften hard hearts, but hearts aren’t changed by compromise. – Alistair Begg
The world says or implies that having our own heart’s desires or worldly desires is fine. The Bible says our heart’s desires should always be that of God’s. How is that possible, unlike Osteen’s assumption, God does not force desires upon us, but True Christians will always desire Godly things above all else.
I highly recommend reading MacLaren’s Commentary on v.25