“Why do you boast of evil, you mighty man? Why do you boast all day long, you who are a disgrace in the eyes of God? Your tongue plots destruction; it is like a sharpened razor, you who practice deceit. You love evil rather than good, falsehood rather than speaking the truth. You love every harmful word, O you deceitful tongue! Surely God will bring you down to everlasting ruin: He will snatch you up and tear you from your tent; he will uproot you from the land of the living. “ (Reference: Psalm 52:1-5 )
David, the attributed writer of Psalm, was angry. Someone had told King Saul that he had gone to the High Priest Ahimelech, and that meant King Saul would be coming out after David again. And not only need King Saul seek out David, but he punished Ahimelech and all his family by death. The verses of Psalm 52 were written with the perpetrator of these things in mind.
Historic Anabaptist Dirk Philips wrote, “. . . a perverse mouth will have no luck upon earth, and a spiteful evil person will be expelled and dumped. For we know that the Lord will carry out the affairs of the miserable and the poor rightly. Also the righteous will thank the name of the Lord and the pious remain before his face, Ps. 140:12ff. Again, what is an evil tongue and what can they execute? It is like a fire in genever wood, that at first will blaze up high because of the oil in it, but afterward dies down and goes out, Ps. 120:4. Thus will their slanders also disappear and melt and die with shame in themselves. But the truth will triumph and the righteous will remain as an olive tree in the house of the Lord and rely on his goodness eternally, Ps. 52:5ff.”
We hear often these days groups and individuals speaking against other groups and individuals. My Facebook page, and I am sure yours too, is filled with one person saying something against another. I do not tarry long over these posting, nor do I try to figure out who is telling the truth about who. Neither do I read many editorials or opinion articles. I don’t read or follow much on the news either. I have no desire to bring anyone to task for untruths or evil lies they might say. I don’t even set out to call down God’s wrath on them.
God knows what is true and what is not true. The Divine does not need me to sort it out, nor to be the agent of vengeance. It is enough for me, beloved, to know that the words I speak are true and uplifting. That is what I see as my task. To encourage you, beloved, to speak the truth in love and compassion, modeling God’s mercy and forgiveness. We have enough people telling us what is wrong in this life and in this world. And not enough people encouraging love, understanding and forbearance. May you beloved by a voice of gentleness in an unkind world. Selah!