The wicked are generally lumped together as those bad people out there, but who are they really?
When I have a plan for another person & a course of action to fulfil that plan. Then when I exercise control – The less I need God & The more I am wicked. (see study at end)
There are two angles I need to be concerned about:
The most disturbing – I am wicked! It was a shock when I realised that my plans to bring people into the kingdom of God were using manipulation and hence wickedness. I had a plan for people to grow in righteousness, and I tried my utmost to get them to follow that plan. I had forgotten God. The Lord has people on a process, and I am merely one interaction in that process. I must entrust people to God in prayer rather than thinking I am personally responsible for them. The fruit of my being wicked is either frustration when my plan fails, or pride if it succeeds. The fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control are marked by their absence.
The other angle is when I am the victim. When I feel I have no choice but to do what is being presented, then I am being manipulated by wickedness. I have somehow forgotten that God is bigger than the threats. I see an outcome as inevitable, but is it really? Is God not able to intervene to rescue? Whether God does intervene or not is down to Him. My doing wrong to avoid certain outcomes or gain others shows a lack of faith in God or love of God.
This is the end of the blog. The remainder of the text is a study in Psalm 10 on the wicked for those who want more detail.
Psalm 10 describes the wicked.
Verse 2 introduces the idea. ‘In his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak’. So, the wicked person is arrogant, thinking too much of their own capability and so depends on self, or those they can control. The target of the wicked is the weak, those who can be controlled through manipulation. The wicked manipulator will probe a person to find their weakness, the button that will work on them. When discovered they move to the second part of Verse 2 – ‘who are caught in the schemes he devises.’ A plan is worked out that will force this person into the scheme chosen by the wicked.
Psalm 10v3-6 describes the heart of the wicked person.
V3 ‘he boasts of the cravings of his heart.’ So, they have a heart’s desire. The end result where they want people to arrive. The worse the wickedness, the more obviously this end is the person’s personal desires. This end may appear good. I have been guilty of using manipulation to press people towards God and His righteousness. However benign the outcome, looking beneath the surface one sees the outcome is about self. There is a hidden, secret motive: these people are righteous because of me, or even worse: for my glory.
Psalm 10:7-8 describes the methods of the wicked.
‘His mouth is full of curses and lies and threats.’ The wicked manipulator threatens terrible things if their scheme is not followed. and they promise the world as they set out a vision of what will happen when their scheme is followed. These promises are lies, for the manipulator cannot guarantee what is promised.
Psalm 10:9-11 The victims of this abuse are the helpless.
The victims are typically those who crave the same things as the wicked person and so can most easily be drawn in by what is promised, or they are the weak who see no way of surviving the threats if they do not go down the wicked persons course of action. When a person falls victim, they are caught in the net of the wicked and dragged off to do the will of the wicked.
‘God has forgotten.’ In such cases God is forgotten both by the wicked and by the victim. Perversely, God may be invoked and prayed to, but always to help bring about the scheme. There is little sense of surrender to the will of God.
V12-18 The Lord at some point intervenes to rescue the weak.
‘But you O God, do see trouble and grief … The victim commits himself to you; you are the helper of the fatherless.’ So, the Lord sees what is going on as events expose the hearts of both the wicked and the victims. ‘The Lord is King forever and ever … defending the fatherless and the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more.’