Online Bible Commentary
Psalm 11:1 In the LORD I take refuge. How then can you say to me: "Flee like a bird to your mountain. 2 For look, the wicked bend their bows; they set their arrows against the strings to shoot from the shadows at the upright in heart. 3 When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?" 4 The LORD is in his holy temple; the LORD is on his heavenly throne. He observes the sons of men; his eyes examine them. 5 The LORD examines the righteous, but the wicked and those who love violence his soul hates. 6 On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot. 7 For the LORD is righteous, he loves justice; upright men will see his face. (NIV)
In our Lord, we take refuge (v. 1a). But the skeptic says “Where is your God now? You must flee from your refuge, your God (v. 1b). He can not help you against the wicked who “set their arrows against you” (v. 2a). In the secret “shadows” they formulated their evil plan against the “upright in heart”, the children of God (v. 2b). Evil is always hatched in the darkness, the domain of Satan.
But where was our Lord on that fateful morn? Why did He desert us? Why did He allow the wicked to shoot their deadly arrows into our foundations? Should we flee from Him? Is he indeed helpless against evil? Is He really our refuge?
So what can we Christians do, as our very foundations are being destroyed (v. 3) and the brave men, women, and children within them? But the Lord brings new life to give us solace. They will not replace those who were lost, but they bring us new love. Our loved ones depart, but we will see them again. He raises up a new shiny tower to replace the two that were destroyed. He brings beauty out of ashes. He is still our refuge.
He is still in His Holy Temple. He is still on His heavenly throne (v.4a). He has not deserted us. He is still in control when all seems out of control. He is still there for us when it seems we have lost everything else. He restores our faith and our future. Evil can not stand. He works all things together, even evil, for our good.
The Lord is watching from on high, examining both the righteous and the wicked (vv. 4b-5). The righteous are His children. The wicked are Satan’s children. Every knee will someday bow to Jesus, but not yet. The wicked love violence. They prove it through their actions. They destroy the innocents in our airplanes and in our buildings. They do so without mercy, or conscience. They incur the “hate” and the wrath of God, the only God. But where is their justice?
We know our God is just. His justice will rain down upon the wicked. They will be continuously showered with “fiery coals and burning sulfur” (v. 6a). They will be continuously buffered by a “scorching wind” (v.6b). They will have no respite. They will suffer this punishment for eternity. They will receive no mercy, for they gave none.
“For the Lord is righteous” (v. 7a). He rewards the upright. They stand in His presence, today (v. 7b). Their lives on earth ended prematurely. But they just got to the good stuff sooner. They are rewarded for their bravery, their sacrifice and their faithfulness. They are basking in the glory of Heaven. Their days are more beautiful than the most beautiful day on earth, even that bright shiny morn when they left this world. They have no tears, no pain. They are more alive today than they ever were on earth. They are warmed by the glory of God. They have a hope and a future. They are with loved ones that they had not seen in a very long time. It is again a time for family, and love. It is a time of rejoicing and reliving. It is a time of joy and never ending peace. It is a time of celebration, with their Lord.