Why boastest thou thyself in mischief, O mighty man? the goodness of God endureth continually.
2 The tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully.
3 Thou lovest evil more than good; and lying rather than to speak righteousness. Selah.
4 Thou lovest all devouring words, O thou deceitful tongue.
5 God shall likewise destroy thee for ever, he shall take thee away, and pluck thee out of thy dwelling place, and root thee out of the land of the living. Selah.
6 The righteous also shall see, and fear, and shall laugh at him:
7 Lo, this is the man that made not God his strength; but trusted in the abundance of his riches, and strengthened himself in his wickedness.
8 But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever.
9 I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints.
Have you ever had to live with a physical or emotionally oppressive person? Some of you reading this commentary know what life is like under a cruel dictator, an uncaring and exploitative employer, an abusive spouse, or in a relationship with an artful manipulator. This is the situation spoken about in Psalm 52. Every line of the first four verses profiles the abuser of power, the “mighty man” who plots the destruction of others, who boasts all day long, who loves evil rather than good, falsehood rather than the truth, and whose words are deceitful and harmful. Such a person, says verse 1, is a disgrace to God.
What words would you rather have on your gravestone? It could be that of verse 7: “Here is the man who did not make God his stronghold but trusted in his great wealth and grew strong by destroying others.” Or it could be that of verse 8: “I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever.”