Psalm 10: Part 3 of 3 (series: Lessons on Psalms)
by John Lowe
Verse 11: The wicked man says to himself, "God has forgotten” and neglects all their persecutions and prayers, and does not avenge their cause, as He said He would do. “He covers his face and never sees." He takes no notice of their suffering in order to avoid helping them. He will not encumber Himself with the things going on upon the earth, and leaves it up to men to manage their affairs as they think appropriate.
Verse 12: Making an earnest cry for vengeance, the psalmist called on God to arise and help the helpless. “Lift up your hand” means “exert your power.” It is a figure of speech for God’s strength and power, especially as it is used in the context of retaliation.
Verse 13: It is foolish to assume God will overlook sin, because He carefully examines or beholds all wickedness, and marks it for His providential punishment. One reason for the psalmist's request for vengeance is that the wicked should not be allowed to despise God and to think he can get away with his actions. If God so judges the wicked by such a destruction, then they would be called to account for their deeds.
Those who have contempt for God are the atheist; not only do they not believe in God, they despise Him. It is inconsistent to despise Someone who does not exist; apparently, He has to exist to build up this kind of bitterness and hatred. God is probably the most unpopular person in the world today. Why? Because the wicked are in the saddle. We are moving toward the time when the sin of man will lead to the “man of sin,” this is the final Antichrist.”
Verse 14: “Fatherless” represents all the underprivileged and oppressed “Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed” (Ps. 82:3).. God sees what’s going on—the suffering of the unfortunate and helpless. And He knows they have no one but Him to help them. His innocent people commit their fate to Him; they trust God who sees trouble and grief and is their Helper.
Verse 15: “Break the arm” means to “deprive of power.” The psalmist appeals to God to intervene and eliminate wickedness. God will utterly destroy the wicked and their deeds. The “hand” of God is more than sufficiently strong to “break the arm” of ungodly people. If God would intervene and punish the wicked, then the psalmist would no longer be able to say that God does not see their deeds or care for the afflicted.
Verse 16 and 17: In the closing part of this psalm (vv. 16-18) there is expressed the certainty that God will answer—“the pagans have perished;” the Lord has heard. It is so sure in the psalmist’s faith, that it is spoken as having already occurred.
The psalmist finally arrives at the ever-comforting and secure truth that “The LORD is King for ever and ever.” But there are two sides to this truth. On the one hand “the nations,” which here means organized opposition to God, whether explicit, or implicit, must disappear. There is no future for ungodliness in any form. The wicked may appear successful for a time, but their fate is that they will be cut off. On the other hand, there is the truth of an equally inevitable comfort for the godly oppressed whom the Lord first hears, then strengthens with inner resources in their heart, so that they may endure.
“Encourage them” means “to give them courage.”
Verse 18: God executes justice for the feeble, and represses the pride and violence of conceited, though frail men “The LORD is known by his justice; the wicked are ensnared by the work of their hands” (Psalm 9:16).. Faith that God defends the afflicted and needy against the tyranny of the wicked was a comfort to the psalmist and the basis for his prayer.
“That man, who is of the earth” refers to the oppressors of the people; earthly, and mortal men, who are made of the dust, and must return to it.