Arise, O LORD. Deliver me...
from men of the world whose portion is in this life.
You fill their belly with treasure;
they are satisfied with children,
And they leave their abundance to their infants.
As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness;
when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness. —Psalm 17:13-15
I heard a story years ago about a funeral at which a man was being buried in a solid gold Cadillac. “Man!” someone murmured, “that’s living.”
The rich and famous have “the good life,” or so they say. Don’t they know that someday they’ll die and leave everything to others? Chuck Swindoll observes, "I've never seen a U-Haul behind a hearse."
"As for me," David says, (in contrast to those who cannot see beyond this world) “I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake (from the “sleep” of death) I shall be satisfied with your likeness." Then, in contrast to those who are satisfied (17:14) with what they have in this life, he will be satisfied (17:15) with God Himself and His love. This the answer to David’s prayer, “Show us the miracle of steadfast love” (17:7).
Augustine imagines an occasion on which God appears and offers this deal: “l will give you anything and everything you ever wanted in this life—beauty, strength, fame, wealth, power, health, a powerful intellect in a perfect body… But you will never see My face again.”
Would I take up this offer? Would you? Jesus asks, “What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his own soul?” (Matthew 16:26).