The righteous man wisely considereth the house of the wicked: but God overthroweth the wicked for their wickedness.
Good men always win in the end. Though it appears they are losing at times, they know better, and Almighty God is on their side. The wicked assume they are in control, but the Judge of all is committed to destroy them. These are the certain rules of life and eternity.
Due to compromise of truth in these perilous times of the last days (II Tim 4:3-4), this common theme of the Bible is nearly unknown (Ps 9:16-17; 37:34-40; Pr 10:6,24-25,27-30; 11:3-9,18-21; 12:2,7,21; 13:6,9,21-22; 14:11,19,32; 15:8-9,29; 21:18,21; 28:18).
Can you see the future? Wisdom gives that ability. Do you have wisdom? You should see that many of those who are popular and prosperous now will soon be wiped out. Which ones will be destroyed? God will judge those who openly and proudly live wicked lives. Wisdom includes the discernment and understanding to see God’s soon reckoning.
Moses wrote about those who sin against the LORD, “Be sure your sin will find you out,” (Num 32:23). Wise men know this axiom of God’s universe. The more public and profane a sinner, no matter how secure at the time, the more likely his soon demise (Job 20:4-29). Learn to look past the glitter and glib of famous sinners to see their early ruin.
Righteous men live disciplined lives, denying lusts that others obey daily. It may shake their faith and resolve to see the wicked prospering in wickedness (Ps 73:1-15), but they quickly recover by recalling God’s holy justice and vengeance against sinners (Ps 73:16-28). They know God is not mocked – a violent reversal of fortune is coming (Gal 6:7).
The world adores profane and profligate sinners, especially celebrities in entertainment, athletics, or politics. They have household names; their every word and move are closely followed; their pictures are everywhere; they are referred to as stars; they get huge financial contracts; they are welcome anywhere at anytime. To their fans and sycophants, they seem invincibly happy and successful. But God is burning (Na 1:2,5-6; Heb 12:29)!
Consider a few. How great is Alexander, his family, or Greece now (Dan 8:8; 11:1-4)? Where are the Pharaohs? Why is Egypt a base nation (Ezek 29:14)? The once beautiful and powerful cities and kingdoms of Babylon and Tyre are ruins compared to what they were when living wickedly. They had a reversal of fortune (Is 47:1-15; Ezek 28:1-26)! Can you find the Hittites, Amorites, Ammonites, Philistines, Moabites, or Edomites?
Consider a few more. By Bible definitions of wickedness, which are strange and extreme to even religious people in this ignorant generation, can you recall these lives without sentimentality corrupting the view? What about Elvis, the Babe, Marilyn, John Lennon, Lenin, Errol, Jimi, James Dean, Jim Morrison, MLK, Princess Diana, JFK, Al Capone, Eva Braun, MJ, Bonnie and Clyde, Keith Moon, Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, etc.?
Do you know the average life expectancy of rappers is around 27 and that of rockers not many years more? God is not mocked. They cannot live the public lives of excess they do and get away with it. God is on His throne laughing at them (Pr 1:24-31; Ps 2:4-5; 37:9-15). Righteous men learn to consider such persons wisely and foresee their bitter end.
The humble righteous, the children and friends of God, know divine fury is held back by God’s longsuffering (Ps 50:21-22; Rom 9:21-24). They know He holds back judgment for the wicked to commit greater sins and earn greater judgment (Gen 15:16; Dan 9:24; Matt 23:29-36). The longer He waits, the hotter the fire of His holy and jealous wrath.
If you do not know this dreadful and terrible God, you need to start reading the Bible (Deut 29:20; 32:21-25; Ps 21:9; 76:7; 137:7-9; Is 66:15-16; Jer 10:10; II Cor 5:9-11; Heb 10:26-31). If you read the Bible but did not know this, then you need a new preacher (Is 30:8-14; Jer 1:9-10; 23:25-32; Mal 2:7; Matt 21:40-46; 22:1-14; II Tim 4:3-4).
What is the lesson? Wise men learn God’s horrible fury is coming on the wicked, so there is no cause or reason to envy them (Ps 37:1,7; Pr 3:31; 24:1,19). They consider the great reversal of fortune that is coming in this world and the next. They know it is better to be the beggar Lazarus than the rich man living luxuriously (Luk 16:19-26). Do you know it?
Why is there a disjunctive connecting the two clauses of this proverb? The righteous man shows his wisdom by not being moved by the short-term prosperity and success of the wicked. Though he looks happy and secure now, God is just about to throw him down. The “but” indicates that God’s overthrow of the wicked is contrary to all appearances.
The life of the righteous is win-win. God blesses them in this world, and then He gives them eternal life in the next world. The blatantly wicked are chased by numerous evils in this life, and then they are cast into the lake of fire for eternity. Even if the righteous sacrifice things now, God rewards them 100-fold more with those things (Mk 10:28-30).
Do not envy the wicked. Do not live like them. Never be a hypocrite by trusting this proverb while living sinfully yourself. Look past the world’s flattering lies. Reject rosy tales of popularity and wealth. See a holy and jealous God coming in vengeance on those who defy Him. Believe it is coming; pray for it; rejoice in it (Ps 58:6-11; Ex 15:1-21).