Bible Bites - Psalm 37:7-8
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
Here, we are told to be still and wait patiently for God and not to worry about those who seem to prosper in their evil ways.
That can seem like a pretty tall order! It’s not easy to see what looks like evil triumphing over good and those who are oppressed, poor or marginalized or over anyone who has been fighting for a just cause. How are we not supposed to fret or do anything we can to put a stop to it?!
First of all, God isn’t asking us to sit by and twiddle our thumbs or look the other way.
Philippians 4:6 tells us to not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let our requests be made known to God, and goes on to say that the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
In the previous chapter, (Philippians 3:19), we are assured that those who are seeming to prosper in evil and have made themselves enemies of the Cross, will have their end is destruction.
So, we can see, there is no need to waste time fretting or letting our anger build. It tends only to evil. It will lead us to act out of turn, in our own will, to seek revenge and matters will be made even worse. We would have given Satan a double victory; victory in the one who has done the evil that kindled our anger and another in us as we acted on our own without God.
So, when we see wickedness and wickedness seeming to prosper, do not fret or get so angry that we want to take matters into your own hands. Pray about it, seek God, wait on Him. He sees what is happening, and has assured us that those perpetuating evil will meet their end in destruction.
We are reminded in Deuteronomy and Romans that vengeance is the Lord’s and that their doom is assured. Do not gloat in their pending doom. As Paul wrote in his letter to the Philippians he had tears in his eyes as he thought about the many who walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.
We are reminded in Matthew 5:44 to love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us.
With all this in mind, I think we can begin to follow what Psalm 37:7-8 teaches; to be still and wait on the Lord, refraining from anger over those who carry out evil. Our God is in control and His holy and perfect will is going to be done. So let us obey, and hold on to His peace that passes all understanding, even through the midst of evil, assured that it will all be overcome by our Almighty God.
Lord God, with all the evil that surrounds us, help us to remember that you are in control and sovereign above all. Help us to be patient and to wait upon you. Help us to do what can seem impossible; to love our enemies and to pray for those who persecute us. Help us to have that peace that passes all understanding as we wait patiently upon you, your call on our lives and your perfect will to be done in your perfect timing. In Jesus’ mighty name we pray and give thanks. Amen!