In the book of Isaiah, we read of the Lord reproving negligent spiritual leaders in Israel. They indulge themselves while the nation is serving idols rather than the living God. The Lord says they are like happy drunkards who think tomorrow will be like this day, great beyond measure. However, when disaster inevitably comes and they cry out, the Lord says let their collection of idols deliver them.

Psalm 46 is a sober reminder that one day tomorrow will not be as today is. We live in a fallen world that is like it is because of the sin of men. The Bible is a book that tells us that until we become convinced of this fact, we cannot gain wisdom for life that is truly life. Men know the world is full of tragedy, pain, sorrow, and death, but they don’t normally connect that reality to sin.

Psalm 46 tells us that the instability of the world we live in points to a cataclysmic end. We read in verses two and three: “Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling.”

This language is reminiscent of the flood in Noah’s day. It is the end of the world description. We think of the ground beneath our feet as stable, but here it gives way. There is nothing that can be done about it. People complain about the corruption in governments and the injustice of the past and present. They know men are sinful because they are affected by it, but they don’t believe in God’s judgment.

Nevertheless, the Bible makes clear there is a day coming when the world will end because of God’s judgment. Peter, in his second epistle, points to the dissolution of the present heavens and earth: “The day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.”

All of this is because of man’s sin. In verse 6 of Psalm 46 we read: “The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice and the earth melts.” This is a reference to the continual wars of men that are ultimately futile because their kingdoms do not last. The psalmist doesn’t deal here with a legitimate use of defense against oppression; his concern is to show the inherent war-like disposition of sinful men and the judgment it leads to from the Lord.

There is an absence of peace on earth between men. Jesus said it would be like this on earth in between his ascension and his return: “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and you will hear of wars and rumors of wars (Matthew 24).” In other words, there will always be war or talk of war on the earth until he comes in judgment.

 This world will not always be like it is now. The Lord will “make wars cease to the end of the earth (Psalm 46:9).” He will bring “desolations on the earth (verse 8).”There is a time coming when tomorrow will not be like today. This is the reality of the world, and the reality of our own individual lives.

Jesus always pointed people to the excellence of spiritual things, and the wisdom of seeking first the Kingdom of God, because the only sure refuge was in the things of God, not the world. Noah was tossed around but secure in the ark. No one outside survived.

Jesus once told of a tower falling on and killing 18 people. He did not explain why those people died and others did not. He said the point to understand was they were not more sinful that other people and all people are headed to the same end eventually. Therefore, the need to turn to the Lord away from the world and sin was an urgent need.

Psalm 46 not only points to the coming judgment of the Lord, it also speaks of the sure and happy refuge there is in the Lord: “There is a river that whose streams make glad the city of God…God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved (verses 4-5).” This is why Peter, who wrote of the end of the world, also urged people to “make your calling and election sure.” Tomorrow is coming.