Should the Wicked Be Rich?
A psalm of Asaph.
1God is truly good to Israel,
to those who have pure hearts.
2But I had almost stopped believing;
I had almost lost my faith
3because I was jealous of proud people.
I saw wicked people doing well.
4They are not suffering;
they are healthy and strong.
5They don’t have troubles like the rest of us;
they don’t have problems like other people.
6They wear pride like a necklace
and put on violence as their clothing.
7They are looking for profits
and do not control their selfish desires.
8They make fun of others and speak evil;
proudly they speak of hurting others.
9They brag to the sky.
They say that they own the earth.
10So their people turn to them
and give them whatever they want.
11They say, “How can God know?
What does God Most High know?”
12These people are wicked,
always at ease, and getting richer.
13So why have I kept my heart pure?
Why have I kept my hands from doing wrong?
14I have suffered all day long;
I have been punished every morning.
15God, if I had decided to talk like this,
I would have let your people down.
16I tried to understand all this,
but it was too hard for me to see
17until I went to the Temple of God.
Then I understood what will happen to them.
18You have put them in danger;
you cause them to be destroyed.
19They are destroyed in a moment;
they are swept away by terrors.
20It will be like waking from a dream.
Lord, when you rise up, they will disappear.
21When my heart was sad
and I was angry,
22I was senseless and stupid.
I acted like an animal toward you.
23But I am always with you;
you have held my hand.
24You guide me with your advice,
and later you will receive me in honor.
25I have no one in heaven but you;
I want nothing on earth besides you.
26My body and my mind may become weak,
but God is my strength.
He is mine forever.
27Those who are far from God will die;
you destroy those who are unfaithful.
28But I am close to God, and that is good.
The Lord God is my protection.
I will tell all that you have done.