The Justice of God
1God is indeed good to Israel,
to those who have pure hearts.
2But I had nearly lost confidence;
my faith was almost gone
3because I was jealous of the proud
when I saw that things go well for the wicked.
4They do not suffer pain;
they are strong and healthy.
5They do not suffer as other people do;
they do not have the troubles that others have.
6And so they wear pride like a necklace
and violence like a robe;
7their hearts pour out evil,
and their minds are busy with wicked schemes.
8They laugh at other people and speak of evil things;
they are proud and make plans to oppress others.
9They speak evil of God in heaven
and give arrogant orders to everyone on earth,
10so that even God's people turn to them
and eagerly believe whatever they say.
11They say, “God will not know;
the Most High will not find out.”
12That is what the wicked are like.
They have plenty and are always getting more.
13Is it for nothing, then, that I have kept myself pure
and have not committed sin?
14O God, you have made me suffer all day long;
every morning you have punished me.
15If I had said such things,
I would not be acting as one of your people.
16I tried to think this problem through,
but it was too difficult for me
17until I went into your Temple.
Then I understood what will happen to the wicked.
18You will put them in slippery places
and make them fall to destruction!
19They are instantly destroyed;
they go down to a horrible end.
20They are like a dream that goes away in the morning;
when you rouse yourself, O Lord, they disappear.
21When my thoughts were bitter
and my feelings were hurt,
22I was as stupid as an animal;
I did not understand you.
23Yet I always stay close to you,
and you hold me by the hand.
24You guide me with your instruction
and at the end you will receive me with honor.
25What else do I have in heaven but you?
Since I have you, what else could I want on earth?
26My mind and my body may grow weak,
but God is my strength;
he is all I ever need.
27Those who abandon you will certainly perish;
you will destroy those who are unfaithful to you.
28But as for me, how wonderful to be near God,
to find protection with the Sovereign Lord
and to proclaim all that he has done!