by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
Only God satisfies
... what this man is saying Psalm 73:25 is that, despite his imperfections, despite his failure, when he was away from God, and more or less turning his back on Him, he could find no satisfaction. In his experience, when he was wrong with God he was wrong everywhere. There was an emptiness about his life— no satisfaction, no blessing, no strength—and even though he was not able to make any positive statement about God, he could at least say that there was nothing and no one else! ... Can we say that we have seen through everything in this life and world? Have we yet come to see that everything that the world offers is ‘a broken cistern’? Have we really been enabled to see through the world and its ways and all its supposed glory? Have we come to the point where we can say: Well, I know this much at any rate; there is nothing else that can satisfy me. I have tried what the world has to offer, I have experimented with all those things, I have played with them and I have come to this conclusion, that when I am away from God, to quote Othello, ‘chaos is come again’.
... Anyone who has been a backslider knows exactly what I am saying.... The backslider is a man who, because of his relationship to God, can never really enjoy anything else. He may try, but he is miserable while it lasts. He has seen through it. This, therefore, is something by which we may always test ourselves. In a remarkable way we have in this confession a striking test of our Christian faith and belief. That is often the first step in our recovery—a realization that everything has actually become different.... Things of the world do not seem to possess the charm and value they once seemed to have. We discover that when we are not in the right relationship to God the very foundations seem to have gone. We may travel to the ends of the earth in an attempt to find satisfaction without God. But we find that there is none.
Faith on Trial, p. 108