This psalm of David begins with a plea for help. He asks to be delivered from evil men who plan evil and wage war. Evil men set traps for David, and he asks for help. He then inserts a pause word, Selah, which is used several times in this psalm to distinguish the stanzas in the psalm. The next stanza is a praise of thankfulness to God for His deliverance of David in times past. The third stanza begins with David’s request that the actions of his enemies be visited back upon them, that their words and slandering would fall upon them. He finishes with the following statements:
12 I know that the Lord will maintain
The cause of the afflicted,
And justice for the poor.
13 Surely the righteous shall give thanks to Your name;
The upright shall dwell in Your presence.
This psalm demonstrates how righteous men should respond to evildoers. Instead of exacting strict physical revenge, David asks God to handle his conflicts. This is not avoidance or cowardice, but rather wisdom, because God’s vengeance will be fair and complete. Our vengeance can simply exacerbate situations and bring more trouble. God, however, finishes what He starts and make all things complete. So when you are struggling with conflict, trust God to work it out rather than taking matter into your own hands. Speak, resolve, and work together on issues, but know that God will heal the rifts and work out the anger-producing issues. You do your part, but leave the heavy lifting to the Lord!