Psalm 107 is a testimony to the great love of the LORD, recounting his mighty acts of salvation for his chosen people Israel. Towards the end, the Psalmist gives us a powerful, albeit quirky image of the LORD’s wonder-working salvation:
He turns rivers into a desert,
springs of water into thirsty ground,
a fruitful land into a salty waste,
because of the evil of its inhabitants.
He turns a desert into pools of water,
a parched land into springs of water.
And there he lets the hungry dwell,
and they establish a city to live in;
they sow fields and plant vineyards and get a fruitful yield.
By his blessing they multiply greatly,
and he does not let their livestock diminish.
In this life, it often appears that then land of the righteous is desolate while the unrighteous seem to reap a bountiful harvest that overflows into abundance.
Their investments multiply. Their children grow strong. And those of the righteous? They seem to languish in poverty and overcome with illness.
Yet the Psalmist testifies that the LORD is a mighty God who works a salvation of reversal.
The full become empty and the empty are filled. The barren give fruit while the fertile dry up.
Rich valleys and fields become salted wastelands, cursed and bereft of life.
Deserts are transformed into lush gardens teeming with life.
Gardens become the foundation of cities and culture.
Where once was a desert and the threat of death, there stands a city where the hungry can be nourished.
The God of Israel is in the habit of reworking the landscape of reality.
For those who trust on him, this is what he does in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Soli Deo Gloria