Why do the wicked prosper?
Scripture reading for May 25th: Job 20-21
Job’s friend Zophar was offended by Job’s warning to fear God’s punishment as well! (Job 19:28-29) Zophar had a belief that the wicked only get by for a short time and then punishment falls on them in this life. Job took exception with his theology and his way of comforting him!
Job stated that often the wicked seem to grow old and increase in power. (Job 21:7) He observed that they appear to be safe and have no fear or problems. They mock God and God seems to do nothing. (Job 21:14, 15) Some men die fat and happy, others die in bitterness and pain. The grave swallows them both and we don’t know why. (Job 21:23-26) It would be easy to come to a wrong conclusion based only on what we can see with our own eyes.
This controversy has been the subject of other writers of Scripture. Psalm 73 was written by Asaph, a gifted musician in King David’s Levitical choir. Asaph nearly lost faith when he observed the prosperity of the wicked. (Psalm 78:2) He saw that they had health and prosperity but were proud at heart. They scoffed at man and mocked heaven and nothing seemed to happen to them. He thought he was keeping himself pure for nothing and almost slipped away from serving God. Then he entered the sanctuary of God and understood their final end. In the end, God would judge them and send them away to sudden destruction! (Psalm 73:16-19)
We can’t go by what we see! The righteous live by their faith! Job’s faith was tested by the taunts of Zophar. Asaph was tested by Satan when he began to reason based on observations with his eyes. We are often tempted to join the wicked in their sins and folly. But when we enter the sanctuary of God and see the truth of His holy Word, we understand that the wicked will not stand in the judgment or sinners before a holy God who will bring every secret thing into judgment! (Psalm 1:5-6) Allow the Lord to bring you understanding today. If you are involved in sin or wickedness, repent quickly and begin a new path of faith and obedience! You’ ll never regret it!