Reading the Word
Psalm 37:12–20 (ESV)
12 The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes his teeth at him, 13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming. 14 The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those whose way is upright; 15 their sword shall enter their own heart, and their bows shall be broken. 16 Better is the little that the righteous has than the abundance of many wicked. 17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the Lord upholds the righteous. 18 The Lord knows the days of the blameless, and their heritage will remain forever; 19 they are not put to shame in evil times; in the days of famine they have abundance. 20 But the wicked will perish; the enemies of the Lord are like the glory of the pastures; they vanish—like smoke they vanish away.
Understanding and Applying the Word
Try as they might, the wicked will not prosper. Their ways are futile. They may “plot” in order to get the upper hand, but their own evil will turn on them. They resist and despise the righteous and their ways. They cling to evil and hate what is good. They use every evil (sword and bow) to put down the righteous, but they will only find defeat.
The Lord upholds the righteous. They are his possession and he will sustain them. By contrast, it is the wicked who are like smoke and vanish quickly because they are the enemies of God.
The world chases after “success” at all costs and justifies whatever means is necessary to obtain it. May we be content to walk in righteousness even if we have little in this world. We know that we belong to a wonderful God who will not abandon us and who will one day gather us to himself. There is nothing to be desired more than that.
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