Welcome to His Encouragement Thursday! I don’t know about you, but Thursdays are my struggle day of the week. By Thursday, I have already been working hard at school and at home, and I just wish it would hurry up and be Friday already. LOL! I definitely need a little extra Jesus time on Thursdays.
The wicked spies upon the righteous and seeks to kill him. The Lord will not leave him in his hand or let him be condemned when he is judged. Wait for the Lord and keep His way, and He will exalt you to inherit the land; when the wicked are eliminated, you will see it.Psalm 37:32-34 (NASB2020)
I want to share these three verses as they have been translated from the Hebrew. Again, I turn to Chabad.org for my translation:
The wicked man watches for the righteous man and seeks to put him to death. The Lord shall not leave him in his hands, and He shall not condemn him [the righteous] when he [the wicked] is judged. Hope to the Lord and keep His way; He will exalt you to inherit the land, and you will witness the destruction of the wicked.
Think about how stinky, how purposeless, how misguided someone’s life is that they feel the need to watch for a good man just so he can kill him. But that is what hate and wickedness do — they infiltrate the soul and darken it so badly that a person who hates and is wicked becomes totally consumed and obsessed. They become hunters seeking, pursuing, a good person in order to kill, to destroy. And they like it. It brings them joy to kill, to hurt, the righteous.
Why? Why are these people like this? I think it’s because a righteous person is like a mirror held up to the wicked person and they do not like what they see. So they kill the mirror. They don’t want to see that their actions cause ripple effects of pain. They don’t want to address the fact that they are wrong. They don’t want to change their ways. Their ways are selfish and self-focused, and they like it that way. So a righteous person has to go.
What I find super interesting is verse 33: “The Lord shall not leave him in his hands, and He shall not condemn the righteous when the wicked is judged.” The Lord shall not leave…this makes me think of Luke 17:1: “Now He said to His disciples, ‘It is inevitable that stumbling blocks come, but woe to one through whom they come!'” Jesus tells us in Luke 17 that it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come…we are all going to end up in the hands of the wicked at some point and in some way. We will be tested. We will suffer some indignity. We will all face evil and hardship and temptation. It’s inevitable. BUT, we have a way out. In 1 Corinthians 10:13 we are told that “No temptation has overtaken you except something common to mankind; and God is faithful, so He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”
God is THE Boss ALL. THE. TIME! And He sees and knows everything. He knows if you are one of His kids. He knows if a wicked person is lying in wait to tempt you, to hurt you, to kill you. But God is in charge. Yes, He may choose to allow, for a time, some really rough stuff in your life. Perhaps He needs to strengthen you through testing. But God will NOT leave you in a wicked man’s hands. One way or another, God will rescue you out of the fire. AND there will be a day of reckoning for those who are wicked. But God, in His awesome graciousness and unending love, will never condemn a righteous person with the wicked. Instead, God will exalt the righteous. He will give them the land AND He will allow them to see the wicked eliminated. All the righteous have to do is continue to walk in God’s ways and obey Him no matter how tough life gets.
This also reminds me of when Jesus speaks to His disciples in Luke 17 about His second coming. Jesus tells His disciples, “‘I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed; one will be taken and the other will be left. There will be two women grinding at the same place; one will be taken and the other left. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other will be left.’ And responding, they said to Him, ‘Where, Lord?’ And He said to them, ‘Where the body is, there also the vultures will be gathered.'” Jesus is not talking about the Rapture of the Bride. He is talking about the judgement of the wicked. Jesus tells His disciples that on the day of Judgement the wicked will be separated out from the righteous. One will be taken, one will be left. Those taken will be judged and then their dead bodies will be consumed by vultures. Jesus, in Luke 17, is corroborating what is stated in Psalm 37.
My take away today from these three powerful verses in Psalm 37 is that God sees His kids. He knows what is happening to us every single second of every single day. He may test us, He may put us through a fire to strengthen us, but He never puts us in the same category as the wicked. God loves us and will one day vindicate all the icky that has happened to us on this earth. One day, in His perfect timing, He will make everything right. And we will get to live with Him in a place where wickedness is ELIMINATED. I don’t know about you, but to me that sounds pretty awesome!