History Is in God’s Hands
“When Evil Seems to Triumph” Psalm 37:1-40
History Is in God’s Hands
“When Evil Seems to Triumph”
Wayne J. Edwards, Pastor
For the majority of Christians, the results of this week’s presidential election are disconcerting, discouraging, and outright disturbing, for unless God intervenes, America may soon become a Marxist/Socialist nation, and the freedoms we have enjoyed for generations may be in jeopardy.
- Most Christians hoped President Trump would have been able to solidify our religious freedom, codify our opposition to abortion, clarify our need for law and order, purify our federal government of those who do not love America, and rectify the educational goals of our children to include American history, patriotism and national pride.
- We also hoped he would be able to expand the level of peace in the Middle East, establish a stronger peace agreement with Iran and North Korea, and to try to resolve our differences with China before it explodes into WWIII.
- While all of that seems impossible now, we must remember we serve the God of the impossible, and we should pray for our President even more, as well as for those who are advising him, for the election will not be over until God says it is.
How should Christians respond to this distressing situation? How should Christians respond when evil seems to triumph?
- Psalm 37 was written by David, not as a young man filled with fancy dreams and lofty visions, but as an older man who had seen the harsh realities of life, including the temporary success of the wicked, as well as God’s eternal promises to the righteous.
- Whether the Psalm was written as a song, or just one of David’s many meditations, the Holy Spirit ordained it to be included in the Holy Scriptures for our benefit, perhaps to give us the courage and hope we need in times like this.
God’s counsel to Christians who have been afflicted by evil doers:
1. Don’t worry about the ungodly – Psalm 37:1-2 –
- Christians should not get angry when the wicked prosper or the lawbreakers go unpunished.
- For just as the grass and herb are green for a season, and then they wither, so will it be for the evil doers.
- While man’s justice has been perverted, God’s has not, and whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap.
- Christians must leave the judgment of others to the Lord, lest we forfeit our personal intimacy with God, by filling our hearts with fret and worry.
2. Put Your Trust and Delight in the Lord – Psalm 37:3-4 –
- Instead of envying the wicked, or wondering why God has not held them accountable, David said God’s people must trust Him and do good for His glory.
- The two reasons why Christians don’t know how to delight in the Lord?
- They don’t know Him as well as they should.
- Their lives are filled with so many things there is no place left for God.
3. Trust God to Protect and Promote You – Psalm 37:5-6 –
- To “delight in the Lord” means to:
- Commit our way unto Him – give Him complete control of every facet of our lives.
- He will bring to light the righteousness the Holy Spirit implanted within us when we were born again.
- The change will be so drastic, it will be as it was in Genesis when God called light to come forth out of darkness, and it did!
4. Rest in the God Who Deals with the Wicked – Psalm 37:7-8 –
- “Rest” means to give it to the Lord and not defend ourselves.
- In 1 Peter 3:15, the Apostle said we should always be ready to give anyone a reason for the hope that is within us, but we are to answer them in gentleness and with respect, lest our testimony be nullified by our attitude.
- In James 1:19-20, the half-brother of the Lord Jesus said we should be “swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath, for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
5. Trust God to Punish Evildoers and Reward the Meek – Psalm 37:9-11 –
- Today, the evil doers have their say. They will flaunt their fame, their fortunes, their wicked frivolity in our faces.
- But soon they will be gone, and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
6. The Triumph of the Godly and the Passing of the wicked – Psalm 37:12-15 –
- Christians of every generation have been ridiculed, derided, mocked and scorned; belittled as ignorant weaklings who believe in a fictional god.
- David said, it is God who laughs at them, for He sees His day is coming, and they will be cut off.
- In 1 Peter 2:12, the Apostle said we must keep our conversation honest among unbelievers, even if they speak evil of us. For when the Holy Spirit calls them to repentance, they will remember our attitude, as well as our actions.
7. God’s Blessing upon the Righteous – Psalm 37:16-17 –
- The less we have of this world’s goods the better, for the more we own, the more it owns us, and robs us of our time with the Lord.
- The less we leave behind for our children the better, lest we create within them the “love” of money, which is the root of all evil, and they wander from the faith.
8. The Lasting Good of the Upright – Psalm 37:18-20 –
- The reward of the wicked is temporary, but the inheritance of the righteous is eternal.
- The Lord knows the days of the upright – He knows exactly where we are on His prophetic calendar, and He knows the goals He wants to achieve in us and through us during this crisis.
9. Blessing and Cursing – Psalm 37:21-22 –
- The difference between the wicked and the righteous is not only revealed in whom they believed, but in how they behaved.
10. God’s Guidance and Support for the Good Man – Psalm 37:23-24 –
- God offers His guidance to those who delight in Him, and those who follow Him will always be in the center of His perfect will.
- However, should we not always heed His guidance, He will not abandon us, but He will uphold us until we return unto Him.
11. Wisdom from a Man after God’s heart – Psalm37:25-26 –
- We must remember this is a principle and not a promise.
- God usually provides sustenance for the righteous, but He also uses hunger to show His people their need for Him.
12. The Promised Reward for Obedience – Psalm 37:27-29 –
- God offers His people a choice:
- Evil – the freedom to get their ‘pound of flesh.’
- Good – to dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
13. The Character/Response of the Wicked – Psalm 37:32-33 –
- Since the wicked are just watching to see if the righteous can guard their tongue, we should obey the Proverb that says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
14. An Exhortation to Trust God’s Testimony – Psalm 37:4-36 –
- Evil and wickedness will flourish for a season, but it will soon come to an end, and that end will not be enjoyable.
- While the names of those who perpetrate evil may be known far and wide for a season, the time will come when even their memory will be no more. Therefore, Christians should wait upon the Lord to execute His judgment in His way, and in His time.
15. An Invitation to Gain the Same Testimony – Psalm 37: 37-40 –
- God is a God of justice, but He doesn’t always carry it out on our schedule.
- In our struggle against the unrighteousness of our day, we must not lose sight of the fact that our eternal salvation is a gift from God, and not because of our goodness.
- Therefore, when evil seems to triumph over good, we must learn to be as patient with God in His judgment of them as He was in His judgment toward us. But for the grace of God, there go I!