Read His Words Before Ours!
We don’t need to look far in the world to see injustice.
Every day the news is filled with stories of people being mistreated or discriminated against because of race, religion, or social status. In many situations, evil seems to triumph. Maybe you can think of examples closer to home from your own experience, too.
This isn’t a new problem. In fact, it was something David was very conscious of as he wrote Psalm 9, in which he celebrated the God of justice.
Though he writes from a situation where he is facing injustice, David praises God boldly. He remembers God’s past faithfulness in bringing justice, and he reflects on justice as an integral part of God’s character.
For David, God’s justice is good news, worthy of praise. His whole-hearted thankfulness to God is expressed by telling others, by “boasting” about God, and by singing of all God has done.
As I read this Psalm, I find it both comforting and slightly unnerving. I suppose our view of justice often depends on which side of it we fall. To the defendant appearing in court, knowing they have done wrong and are about to face the consequences, justice is something to fear, while for the victim, it’s a source of hope, and we see this contrast reflected in the Psalm.
For those who are on the wrong side of God’s justice, the consequences are severe. We read of a God who rebukes the nations, destroys the wicked, and brings eternal ruin. (Psalm 9:5-6) God’s enemies retreat, stumbling and perishing (Psalm 9:3), caught in traps they have set themselves. (Psalm 9:15)
There are many examples of this throughout Scripture:
- When the Midianites oppress the people of Israel, God confuses them, causing them to fight one another, and grants the Israelites victory as they simply stand and watch. (Judges 7:19-22)
- When Daniel’s fellow-workers in Babylon trick the king into throwing Daniel into the lions’ den, God miraculously rescues Daniel, and it is his enemies who are eaten by the lions. (Daniel 6:21-24)
- When Haman plots to destroy God’s people, he is brought to justice and hung on the gallows he built himself. (Esther 7:6-10)
Lest we be too quick to cast our enemies in the roles of the wicked and align ourselves with the righteous, it’s worth noting that Psalm 9:17 describes the heart of wickedness as forgetting God.
Paul’s words in Romans 2 provide a sobering reminder that, without Jesus, we are all deserving of God’s judgement and “there is no favoritism with God.” (Romans 2:11) Rather than assuming God is on our side, we must be careful to make sure we are on His.
For those of us who have put our faith in Jesus and turned to God, there need be no fear of His judgement, and in situations where we are seeking or lacking justice, God’s justice truly is good news!
God is a refuge in times of trouble, He never abandons those who seek Him, He remembers the needy, and He restores the hope of the oppressed.
These are truths that bring deep security.
“For the LORD loves justice and will not abandon His faithful ones. They are kept safe forever.” (Psalm 37:28)
“I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all.” (John 10:28)
In a world where injustice is rife, this psalm provides encouragement that, in the end, God’s justice will prevail. The plans of the wicked may seem to succeed for a time, but ultimately, “no wisdom, no understanding, and no counsel will prevail against the Lord.” (Proverbs 21:30)
As David considers all of this, he asks God for help in his current situation for two reasons, to rejoice in God’s salvation and to tell others.
Surely our response should be the same!
Let’s bring our situations to God, knowing He cares and He can bring justice.
Let’s run to Him for refuge, rejoicing in the promise that God’s justice will ultimately prevail.
Let’s praise Him and proclaim the Good News to others who need to hear it!
Embracing God’s fullness in our lives is rooted in scripture and memorizing His word is vital to our continued growth and depth with Jesus. Tap and hold from your mobile device to download this week’s verse and make it your phone’s lockscreen!