The 3-Pronged Justice of Psalms
I think of Blackbox International when I read the Psalms. Blackbox exists to help boys who’ve been rescued out of sex-trafficking. I’ve been horrified to learn about the unimaginable abuse that takes place, and I’ve caught glimpses of the darkness in the souls of those perpetrating this evil. But I’ve also seen God’s care for the abused. I’ve seen His love lavished on our boys: through our wise and gentle staff, a local church who treats the boys with dignity, people who pray for and support Blackbox, and the precious healing God orchestrates in their hearts.
The Psalmist, David, was a victim of injustice, but he was also a recipient of God’s care. God’s concern for the victims of injustice is plastered throughout the Bible, but it’s especially evident in the emotional songs of David. Psalm 10:14-18 reveals three ways God brings about justice.
But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
you are the helper of the fatherless.
Break the arm of the wicked man;
call the evildoer to account for his wickedness
that would not otherwise be found out.
The Lord is King for ever and ever;
the nations will perish from his land.
You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted;
you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
defending the fatherless and the oppressed,
so that mere earthly mortals
will never again strike terror. (NIV)
God helps the victim. God gives comfort, peace, and strength to the downtrodden. He comes close – extra close to the broken. He helps the fatherless, the orphan, the widow, the grieving, and the poor. Victims often know this to be true. They’ve experienced God’s help firsthand. It’s why David writes, “The victims commit themselves to you.”
God will punish the unjust. On a recent trip with someone who was just learning about Blackbox, I witnessed him react as many do. He wanted to start punching the throats of those trafficking children. David understood this rage. He prayed, “Break the arm of the wicked man.” I’m so thankful for organizations working to bring traffickers to legal justice. We support them and continue to focus on our niche – longterm, holistic care. But we can all take comfort in knowing God will ultimately bring justice to the unjust. If they don’t soon repent, it won’t be pretty. “Mere earthly mortals will never again strike terror.”
God gives hope. Two of the most powerful words in our universe are “one day.” One day the nations will perish from his land. One day the oppressed will suffer no more. One day there will be no more pain. One day the mortal will be clothed in immortality. One day death will be swallowed up in victory. One day.
So hang on and follow God’s lead. Give help. Oppose injustice. Offer hope.