“Why do the wicked renounce God? He has said in his heart, ‘You will not require an account.’ But You have seen, for You observe trouble and grief, To repay it by Your hand. The helpless commits himself to You; You are the helper of the fatherless.” Psalm 10:13-14
It’s stating the obvious but you have to state the obvious in order to talk about it: The world is full of wickedness and trouble.
The situation is so bad that some people use this reality to deny the very existence of God. Their rational goes something like this, “If there really was a God he would be just and loving and he wouldn’t permit so much evil and pain to exist on the earth.”
In Psalm ten, David sites a 2500 year old variation on this argument when he explains why the wicked have renounced God. Listen to what he says, “He (the wicked) has said in his heart, ‘You (God) will not require an account.’”
Friends, God, in his handling of sin must be very careful as he balances the need to respect people’s right to exercise their own free will in conjunction with fulfilling his promise to care for the vulnerable and execute justice on behalf of the oppressed.
If God just stepped in and made all wrong doing and wickedness impossible he would end up being a bigger oppressor than all the wicked and powerful combined.
So God, in his wisdom and sovereignty, does hold the oppressor accountable for his exploitation of the poor and vulnerable. Sometimes it’s hard for us to see, especially given the fact that there’s a seemingly endless queue of exploiters standing in line waiting for their turn, but each time the wicked are caught in their scheming its evidence that God’s at work helping the just in this world in their fight for justice.
Ultimately God’s promise of an accounting for the wicked is fulfilled at the very end of sin. Revelation chapter twenty describes a day when the wicked will be judged according to the standard of righteousness God has set and the record of the wicked lives they’ve led. On that day the Book of Life will also be opened and God will reveal all the times he attempted to bring them to repentance and righteousness and how they rejected his offer of mercy and life.
God, in his love, is even now looking for a way to give mercy to everyone, but there will come a day when the wicked will have closed the last window through which God can send his call of mercy.
Today is the day of salvation. Today God’s call to repentance is still sounding in the world. Today God’s love still offers mercy to the sinner. Today the righteous need to pray that as many as possible will hear and accept God’s call because soon the opportunity for salvation will pass.