Psalm 73:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Psalm 73:1, NIV: "A psalm of Asaph. Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart."

Psalm 73:1, ESV: "A Psalm of Asaph. Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart."

Psalm 73:1, KJV: "{A Psalm of Asaph.} Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart."

Psalm 73:1, NASB: "God certainly is good to Israel, To those who are pure in heart!"

Psalm 73:1, NLT: "A psalm of Asaph. Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure."

Psalm 73:1, CSB: "God is indeed good to Israel, to the pure in heart."

What does Psalm 73:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

As he begins Psalm 73, Asaph reflects on God's character. This is an important perspective, since it provides context for the heartfelt description he gives in the next few verses. That includes a deep, faith-challenging struggle with the earthly success of wicked people (Psalm 73:2–3). This psalm depicts how Asaph wrestled with this challenge (Psalm 73:16–17), ultimately coming back to a full and confident faith in God (Psalm 73:28).

While writing this, Asaph, may have recounted the many gracious acts God had performed on behalf of Israel. God had made a covenant with Israel to bless His people when they obeyed Him (Leviticus 26; Deuteronomy 28—30). Throughout Israel's history, God had come to the nation's rescue. He had delivered the Israelites from bondage in Egypt. He had provided for His people throughout their wilderness journey from Egypt to the Promised Land. He had protected them from antagonistic Canaanite tribes. He had also enabled His people to take possession of the Promised Land and had delivered them from oppression in the times of the Judges. He had given them David to be their king.

As an Old Testament believer, Asaph's sense of God's people would imply the nation of Israel, itself. Still, his remark here mentions those who are "pure in heart" (Psalm 24:4), which previews the faith-based message more clearly spelled out in the New Testament (Romans 9:6–8).