Security of Those Who Trust in the Lord, and Insecurity of the Wicked.
A Psalm of David.
37 [a]Do not worry because of evildoers,
Nor be envious toward wrongdoers;
For they will wither quickly like the grass,
And fade like the green herb.
Trust [rely on and have confidence] in the Lord and do good;
Dwell in the land and feed [securely] on His faithfulness.
Delight yourself in the Lord,
And He will give you the desires and petitions of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
Trust in Him also and He will do it.
He will make your righteousness [your pursuit of right standing with God] like the light,
And your judgment like [the shining of] the noonday [sun].
Be still before the Lord; wait patiently for Him and entrust yourself to Him;
Do not fret (whine, agonize) because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.
Cease from anger and abandon wrath;
Do not fret; it leads only to evil.
For those who do evil will be cut off,
But those who wait for the Lord, they will inherit the land.(A)
For yet a little while and the wicked one will be gone [forever];
Though you look carefully where he used to be, he will not be [found].(B)
But the humble will [at last] inherit the land
And will delight themselves in abundant prosperity and peace.(C)
The wicked plots against the righteous
And gnashes at him with his teeth.
The Lord laughs at him [the wicked one—the one who oppresses the righteous],
For He sees that his day [of defeat] is coming.
The wicked have drawn the sword and bent their bow
To cast down the afflicted and the needy,
To slaughter those who are upright in conduct [those with personal integrity and godly character].
The sword [of the ungodly] will enter their own heart,
And their bow will be broken.
Better is the little of the righteous [who seek the will of God]
Than the abundance (riches) of many wicked (godless).(D)
For the arms of the wicked will be broken,
But the Lord upholds and sustains the righteous [who seek Him].
The Lord knows the days of the blameless,
And their inheritance will continue forever.
They will not be [b]ashamed in the time of evil,
And in the days of famine they will have plenty and be satisfied.
But the wicked (ungodly) will perish,
And the enemies of the Lord will be like the [c]glory of the pastures and like the fat of lambs [that is consumed in smoke],
They vanish—like smoke they vanish away.
The wicked borrows and does not pay back,
But the righteous is gracious and kind and gives.
For those blessed by God will [at last] inherit the land,
But those cursed by Him will be cut off.(E)
The steps of a [good and righteous] man are directed and established by the Lord,
And He delights in his way [and blesses his path].
When he falls, he will not be hurled down,
Because the Lord is the One who holds his hand and sustains him.
I have been young and now I am old,
Yet I have not seen the righteous (those in right standing with God) abandoned
Or his descendants pleading for bread.
All day long he is gracious and lends,
And his descendants are a blessing.
Depart from evil and do good;
And you will dwell [securely in the land] forever.
For the Lord delights in justice
And does not abandon His saints (faithful ones);
They are preserved forever,
But the descendants of the wicked will [in time] be cut off.
The righteous will inherit the land
And live in it forever.
The mouth of the righteous proclaims wisdom,
And his tongue speaks justice and truth.
The law of his God is in his heart;
Not one of his steps will slip.
The wicked lies in wait for the righteous
And seeks to kill him.
The Lord will not leave him in his hand
Or let him be condemned when he is judged.
Wait for and expect the Lord and keep His way,
And He will exalt you to inherit the land;
[In the end] when the wicked are cut off, you will see it.
I have seen a wicked, violent man [with great power]
Spreading and flaunting himself like a cedar in its native soil,
Yet he passed away, and lo, he was no more;
I sought him, but he could not be found.
Mark the blameless man [who is spiritually complete], and behold the upright [who walks in moral integrity];
There is a [good] future for the man of peace [because a life of honor blesses one’s descendants].
As for transgressors, they will be completely destroyed;
The future of the wicked will be cut off.
But the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord;
He is their refuge and stronghold in the time of trouble.
The Lord helps them and rescues them;
He rescues them from the wicked and saves them,
Because they take refuge in Him.
- Psalm 37:1 One of the longer psalms, Ps 37 also has the distinction of having every other verse (sometimes succeeding verses) begin with a letter of the Hebrew in alphabetical order. This technique served as a memory aid.
- Psalm 37:19 I.e. have their expectations in Your goodness be disappointed.
- Psalm 37:20 I.e. flowers.