God's Justice in the Face of Evil
Psalm 10 is a lament psalm that addresses the apparent silence and absence of God in the face of evil and the oppression of the wicked. As we study this psalm from a New Covenant perspective, we will see how it points to Jesus Christ as the ultimate answer to the cry for justice and the hope of the oppressed. We will explore the themes of God's sovereignty, the cry of the afflicted, and the assurance of God's justice.
Section 1: The Cry of the Afflicted (vs 1-11)
"Why, O LORD, do You stand far off? Why do You hide in times of trouble? In arrogance the wicked hotly pursue the poor; let them be caught in the schemes that they have devised. For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul, and the one greedy for gain curses and renounces the LORD. In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, 'There is no God.' His ways prosper at all times; your judgments are on high, out of his sight; as for all his foes, he puffs at them. He says in his heart, 'I shall not be moved; throughout all generations I shall not meet adversity.' His mouth is filled with cursing and deceit and oppression; under his tongue are mischief and iniquity. He sits in ambush in the villages; in hiding places he murders the innocent. His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless; he lurks in ambush like a lion in his thicket; he lurks that he may seize the poor; he seizes the poor when he draws him into his net."
The cry of the afflicted questioning God's apparent absence and silence in the face of evil.
The description of the wicked who oppress the poor, boast in their own desires, and deny God's existence.
The depiction of the wicked's actions of violence, deceit, and exploitation against the helpless and innocent.
Harmony: Romans 3:14-18 "Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; ruin and misery lie in their wake, and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes."
How does the psalmist's cry for justice and the lament over the wicked's oppression resonate with your own experiences of witnessing evil in the world?
In what ways can we find solace and hope in God's sovereignty, even when it seems that the wicked prosper and go unpunished?
How does Jesus, as the embodiment of God's justice, provide us with the ultimate hope that righteousness will prevail and evil will be vanquished?
Section 2: The Assurance of God's Justice and Defense (vs 12-18)
"Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up Your hand; do not forget the afflicted. Why does the wicked renounce God and say in his heart, 'You will not call to account'? But you do see, for you note mischief and vexation, that you may take it into your hands; to you the helpless commits himself; you have been the helper of the fatherless. Break the arm of the wicked and evildoer; call his wickedness to account till you find none. The LORD is king forever and ever; the nations perish from his land. O LORD, you hear the desire of the afflicted; you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more."
The plea for God to rise up and defend the afflicted, not forgetting their sufferings.
The acknowledgement of God's omniscience and His care for the helpless and fatherless.
The assurance that God, as the eternal King, will bring justice and put an end to the reign of the wicked.
Harmony: Revelation 21:4 "He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the former things have passed away."
How does the psalmist's plea for God's intervention and justice resonate with your own longing for righteousness and relief from oppression?
In what ways can we find comfort in knowing that God hears the cries of the afflicted and strengthens their hearts?
How does Jesus, as the eternal King, bring hope and assurance that God's justice will prevail and the reign of evil will come to an end?
Psalm 10, interpreted through the perspective of the New Covenant in Christ, exposes the arrogance and wickedness of the wicked, while affirming God's justice and care for the afflicted, finding its ultimate fulfillment in Jesus.
The psalmist's cry for God to arise and lift up His hand against the wicked anticipates the final judgment when Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead (Acts 10:42).
The psalmist's lament over the wicked's pride and oppression echoes the broken state of humanity without Christ, who came to heal the brokenhearted and set the captives free (Luke 4:18).
The psalmist's plea for God to hear the cries of the afflicted and bring justice aligns with Jesus' teachings on caring for the marginalized and His promise to bring comfort and restoration (Matthew 25:35-40).
The psalmist's affirmation of God as the helper of the fatherless and protector of the oppressed prefigures Jesus' love and concern for the vulnerable and His role as our advocate before the Father (1 John 2:1).
The psalmist's assurance that the Lord will never forget the afflicted is realized in Jesus' sacrificial love and His promise to be with us always (Matthew 28:20).
Psalm 10 unveils the reality of human wickedness, the cry for justice, and the hope we have in Jesus Christ, our Savior and Advocate for the oppressed.