O Lord God, to whom vengeance belongs; O God, to whom vengeance belongs, show yourself.
I. THE AWFUL CONDITION OF THE WICKED PERSECUTOR. The persecutors referred to (vers. 1-10) are represented as "proud," speaking "hard things," as "workers of iniquity," as "breaking in pieces" the people of God, as "slaying the widow and the stranger," and "murdering the fatherless." Every age and country has abounded with such oppressors, they are rife even in this land of liberty.
1. They are prayed against by their godly victims (vers. 1, 2).
2. They are understood by their godly victims, who saw in their hearts —
(1) Atheism (ver. 7).
(2) Brutality (ver. 8).
(3) Folly (vers. 8-10).
II. THE BLESSED CONDITION OF THEIR PIOUS VICTIMS. These victims regarded their persecution —
1. As a Divine chastisement (ver. 12). All afflictions even when they come by the cruel persecution of men are employed by the Almighty Father as chastisements and corrections. Although He does not originate the evil He directs it and uses it for good.
2. As a Divine chastisement that would come to an end (ver. 13). The afflictions will not continue for ever, a long and blessed repose will ensue. The persecutors will fall into the pit which they have dug. The sinner is ever his own destroyer; with every crime he is sinking his own dark bottomless pit into which he must fall.
3. As a chastisement under which they were guaranteed Divine support. The pious victims experienced
(1) Divine help (vers. 17, 18).
(2) Divine consolation (ver. 19).
4. As a Divine chastisement that would end in the ruin of their enemies (vers. 20-23).
Parallel VersesKJV: O LORD God, to whom vengeance belongeth; O God, to whom vengeance belongeth, shew thyself.