Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Adult Sunday School Notes -

Psalm Ten: Overcoming The Dread Of The POWER Of Wicked Oppressors
(Psalm 10:1-18)
  1. Introduction
    1. People who are abused by others are often held captive by the fear of the power of their oppressors. Patricia Evans, The Verbally Abusive Relationship, p. 22 shows that verbally abusive people believe in "Power Over" others as a way of getting to their goals in life.
    2. However, Scripture demands that we be in bondage to no man, 1 Cor. 7:23 and Gal. 1:10. How, then, does the oppressed who genuinely fears the "power over" bully deal with the power exerted at him?!
    3. Psalm 10 is the tool for the oppressed as follows:
  2. Overcoming The Dread Of The POWER Of Wicked Oppressors, Psalm 10:1-18.
    1. The psalm begins by sharing the view of an abuse victim who dreads the power of his oppressor, 10:1-11:
      1. The victim of abuse asks why God seems unconnected with his trial when he needs Him, Ps. 10:1.
      2. He then itemizes the ease with which his abuser flays himself about with total disregard for accountability to anybody, let alone to God, Ps. 10:2-11:
        1. The abusive party hotly pursues his victim who is caught in the oppressor's schemes, Ps. 10:2.
        2. The abusive party boasts in his sinful lusts and blesses others who are greedy with him, Ps. 10:3.
        3. He is proud and so does not seek God's will; in fact, God isn't even in his plans, Ps. 10:4!
        4. Because his ways have become prosperous, the abuser is proud of himself and his power, has become insensitive to what Scripture really says and sneers at all who oppose him, Ps. 10:5.
        5. In fact, the oppressor is confident that throughout history he will be established, Ps. 10:6.
        6. Accordingly, his speech is full of all sorts of abuses: he curses, is treacherous, injurious and sinful, 7.
        7. Like a fearless lion in search of its prey, he goes after innocent people to their harm, Ps. 10:8-9, 10.
        8. So confident is he in this evil way of life that he believes God has forgotten his sins or does not take note of them, Ps. 10:11.
    2. Accordingly, the Psalmist calls out to God for help from his oppressor, Psalm 10:12.
    3. Suddenly, from the righteous perspective, the psalmist contrasts the sovereign power of Almighty God with the mortality of the oppressor to find solace from the power of his human oppressor, Ps. 10:13-18:
      1. Taking the view of faith in God's superiority of power over his human oppressor, the oppressed psalmist asks why the oppressor belittles God, Ps. 10:13!
      2. Then the psalmist draws upon his Biblical Theology to conclude that God helps oppressed people like himself in this situation, Ps. 10:14 with Ex. 22:22-24:
        1. The psalmist states that God beholds the provocation of the wicked against the oppressed and so the oppressed can rely upon the Lord to help him, Ps. 10:14a,b.
        2. This is because the Lord helps the fatherless, Ps. 10:14c. This term "fatherless" alludes to the promise of Exodus 22:22-24 where God warns against taking unfair advantage of the fatherless and widows as He is their angry avenger against oppressors!
      3. Based upon Scripture, the psalmist confidently asks God to destroy the power of his oppressor, the phrase "Break the arm of the wicked" picturing a breaking of one's power, B.K.C.,O.T., p. 800.
      4. He also concludes that God is sovereign over the oppressor, that God will strengthen the oppressed because the oppressor, unlike God, is but a mere mortal, Ps. 10:16-17, 18!
Lesson: No matter how powerful is one's oppressor or his oppressions against his victim, God helps the helpless as a matter of SCRIPTURAL promise, cf. Ex. 22:22-24 with Psalm 10:14c. The reason God is ABLE to do so is that GOD is GREATER in power than the oppressor, for he is MORTAL unlike the Almighty, Ps. 10:16-18.

Application: We or a victim we know of oppression handles his FEAR of human oppressors by recalling that (1) God is ALMIGHTY where the oppressor is MORTAL, and thus WEAKER than God, and that (2) God helps the "underdog", Ex. 22:22-24. Putt ing these two truths together, we can take hope that the oppressor is doomed and thus fear him no more!