Psalm 58

The Call for Justice and the Righteous Judgment of God



In Psalm 58, the psalmist addresses the injustice and wickedness prevalent in society and calls upon God to bring righteous judgment. As we study this psalm from a New Covenant perspective, we will see how it points to Jesus Christ as the ultimate standard of justice and the hope for a righteous judgment. We will explore the themes of recognizing and denouncing wickedness, trusting in God's judgment, and anticipating His vindication.

Section 1: Recognizing and Denouncing Wickedness (vs 1-5)

"Do you rulers indeed speak justly? Do you judge people with equity? No, in your heart you devise injustice, and your hands mete out violence on the earth. Even from birth the wicked go astray; from the womb they are wayward, spreading lies. Their venom is like the venom of a snake, like that of a cobra that has stopped its ears, that will not heed the tune of the charmer, however skillful the enchanter may be."

Talking Points:

Harmony: Matthew 23:23 (NIV), "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former."


Section 2: Trusting in God's Judgment (vs 6-9)

"Break the teeth in their mouths, O God; LORD, tear out the fangs of those lions! Let them vanish like water that flows away; when they draw the bow, let their arrows fall short. May they be like a slug that melts away as it moves along, like a stillborn child that never sees the sun. Before your pots can feel the heat of the thorns— whether they be green or dry—the wicked will be swept away."

Talking Points:

Harmony: 2 Thessalonians 1:6-7 (NIV), "God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels."


Section 3: Anticipating God's Vindication (vs 10-11)

"The righteous will be glad when they are avenged, when they dip their feet in the blood of the wicked. Then people will say, 'Surely the righteous still are rewarded; surely there is a God who judges the earth.'"

Talking Points:

Harmony: Revelation 19:1-2 (NIV), "After this I heard what sounded like the roar of a great multitude in heaven shouting: 'Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God, for true and just are his judgments.'"



Psalm 58, addresses God's judgment on the wicked and the call for righteous justice, finding its ultimate fulfillment in Jesus. 

The psalmist's plea for righteous judgment and recognition of God's authority prefigures Jesus as the righteous Judge who will execute justice when He returns (Matthew 25:31-46, Revelation 19:11-16). 

The psalmist's description of the wicked as deceitful and rebellious reflects the sinful nature of humanity, for which Jesus came to provide redemption and transformation (Romans 3:10-18, Romans 5:8). 

The psalmist's call for the righteous to rejoice in God's judgment anticipates the final victory and vindication of the righteous through Jesus' work on the cross (Colossians 2:13-15). 

The psalmist's comparison of the wicked to venomous serpents mirrors Jesus' rebuke of the Pharisees as a brood of vipers for their hypocrisy (Matthew 3:7, Matthew 23:33). 

Ultimately, Psalm 58 points us to Jesus as the righteous Judge and the source of true justice, inviting us to trust in Him to bring about righteousness and vindication for His people.