A good writer writes about what he knows. In light of this maxim, the content of Psalm 74 suggests that Asaph lived through some very dark and difficult days of defeat—days haunted by the questions of “Why?” (vv. 1, 11) and “How long?” (v. 10). Psalm 76 indicates that Asaph experienced the pinnacle of divine deliverance and protection also. In this composition, Asaph declares God’s defense of His people (vv. 1-3), then describes God’s victory over the enemy (vv. 4-9), and, finally, exhorts all to obey the Lord God (vv. 10-12).
Peaks and valleys are a fact of geography. They are also a fact of one’s spiritual pilgrimage. The just lives by faith regardless of their current terrain.