Will evildoers never understand? They consume my people as they consume bread; they do not call on the Lord. Then they will be filled with dread, for God is with those who are righteous. You sinners frustrate the plans of the oppressed, but the Lord is his refuge (14:4-6 CSB).
In this psalm we see that God’s people may have problems now from the ungodly, but these problems cannot be compared with those that the ungodly face. How is this so? The Lord is opposed to evildoers. Usually they do not think about their condition before the Lord. (Remember that they suppress the knowledge of God.) But there comes a time when the living God steps into their lives and upsets their world. David tells of us this time and its effect on the unrighteous. Then they will be filled with dread… People cannot escape their accountability to God, and when it finally comes upon them, dread overcomes them, since they have no hope. Weep for the hopeless sinner.
What causes their dread? For God is with those who are righteous. Those whom they had oppressed and persecuted are finally recognized to be the favored ones of the Almighty; in fact, God takes his place among them. What is the sinner’s fear is the saint’s comfort. Why can we have confident assurance when all seems to be against us? By faith we know that the Lord of Glory has decided to live with his people. He is not far away; he is present in our company, whether we perceive his presence or not. Let us then lay hold of this truth by faith and so live in hope!
Those who do evil are a source of frustration for the saints, here called the oppressed. There are many things that we would like to see different in the world around us, but evildoers act to oppose and to ruin. What can the saints do? Rest in the Lord. He alone is the refuge of the saints.
Oh, that Israel’s deliverance would come from Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad (Psalm 14:7 CSB).
David concludes this psalm with a prayer that expresses the deepest longing of the elect of God. How we who have been saved by grace look for the fullness of what has been freely given to us by God! The source of change is the Lord himself. When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people…. God himself will set things right for those he loves. What we have in our position, he will make sure that we possess in our condition.
The psalm closes on a high note. King David calls the saints to rejoice and be glad. There is hope in the future for the called. Let us set our sights on that day!
Grace and peace,