Psalm 58:10-11 (ESV) -- The righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance; he will bathe his feet in the blood of the wicked. Mankind will say, “Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth.”
There is a kind of Christianity that affirms the whole Bible but doesn’t know what to do with much of the Bible. The veneer of niceness many have slapped onto Christianity prevents them from dealing with particular texts. Kindness is a good thing. Christians should definitely be people of character. But godly character includes rejoicing in the right things, and one of those things is the justice of God displayed.
Our passage today shows us this truth. The psalmist writes, “The righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance; he will bathe his feet in the blood of the wicked. Mankind will say, ‘Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth.’”
Notice first that the psalmist says “the righteous will rejoice.” He is speaking of God’s people. The righteous are those who belong to the LORD and walk with Him. They are the holy ones in the land. What does the text say the righteous do? They will rejoice when they see vengeance. They rejoice when their feet are bathed in the blood of the wicked.
This way of talking is foreign to many believers. In fact, some would even conclude it is not a Christian way of talking. But these are the righteous who rejoice. They rejoice when wicked people face the judgment of their actions. Mankind sees the reward of the righteous and the punishment of the wicked as evidence of God’s justice. The Judge of all the earth will do right.
Do you celebrate when God brings justice? It is good to celebrate mercy, grace, and love. These are all attributes of God’s character. But justice is praiseworthy as well. The righteous in the land rejoice when wicked evildoers suffer the judgment of God. We should be slow to condemn language like this, and quicker to examine our own hearts about why we recoil at it.
Reflection & Journal:
- Why do so many Christians struggle with language like we see in our passage today?
- What are the reasons why the righteous would rejoice at the judgment of the wicked?
- How does this passage challenge you?
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