WHAT THE WICKED HAVE COMINGDoesn't it just make you grit your teeth at times to see people do wickedly, and get away with it? You might have knowledge of them getting away with extortion, but not have a way to prove it, and maybe feel it isn't your place to play cop, but you shake your head, just the same. Perhaps you see someone really do wrong to a widow, or something that would equate to taking candy from a baby. Well, we must be careful on our estimation who qualifies as the wicked and who doesn't, but long enough and careful observation will make their hearts known. "Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them." (Matt. 7:17 - 20) The wicked will be operating of an unsaved nature. They won't know God, won't have Him in them, won't know His bible, and won't believe it or obey it. If we know people like this, we are duty-bound to pray for them, because we know what all they have coming to them. "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do not even the publicans the same?" (Matt. 5:44 - 46) So shall we explore what the bible has to say about the wicked? Much of it can be found in Job, but there is a lot said of the wicked throughout the bible.
"Knowest thou not this of old, since man was placed upon earth, That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment? Though his excellency mount up to the heavens, and his head reach unto the clouds; Yet he shall perish for ever like his own dung: they which have seen him shall say, 'Where is he?' He shall fly away as a dream, and shall not be found: yea, he shall be chased away as a vision of the night. The eye also which saw him shall see him no more; neither shall his place any more behold him. His children shall seek to please the poor, and his hands shall restore their goods. His bones are full of the sin of his youth, which shall lie down with him in the dust. Though wickedness be sweet in his mouth, though he hide it under his tongue; Though he spare it, and forsake it not; but keep it still within his mouth: Yet his meat in his bowels is turned, it is the gall of asps within him. He hath swallowed down riches, and he shall vomit them up again: God shall cast them out of his belly. He shall suck the poison of asps: the viper's tongue shall slay him. He shall not see the rivers, the floods, the brooks of honey and butter. That which he laboured for shall he restore, and shall not swallow it down: according to his substance shall the restitution be, and he shall not rejoice therein. Because he hath oppressed and hath forsaken the poor; because he hath violently taken away an house which he builded not; Surely he shall not feel quietness in his belly, he shall not save of that which he desired. There shall none of his meat be left; therefore shall no man look for his goods. In the fulness of his sufficiency he shall be in straits: every hand of the wicked shall come upon him. When he is about to fill his belly, God shall cast the fury of his wrath upon him, and shall rain it upon him while he is eating. He shall flee from the iron weapon, and the bow of steel shall strike him through. It is drawn, and cometh out of the body; yea, the glittering sword cometh out of his gall: terrors are upon him. All darkness shall be hid in his secret places: a fire not blown shall consume him; it shall go ill with him that is left in his tabernacle. The heaven shall reveal his iniquity; and the earth shall rise up against him. The increase of his house shall depart, and his goods shall flow away in the day of his wrath. This is the portion of a wicked man from God, and the heritage appointed unto him by God." (Job 20:4 - 29) Sorry about the long read, but it is all descriptive of what the wicked experience. As you can see, this is Job's friend, Zophar, apparently seething with anger at whom he feels is a sinful Job. Though proofless of Job's guilt, Zophar has been very accusatory; nice friend. There are other parts of Scripture that go along with what Zophar has to say about the wicked, though.
Job 20:5 is supported by "I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree. Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found." (Psa. 37:35 - 36) So David agrees that there are wicked people who will come in power and perhaps strength of wealth, but their corruption and perversity we often will note to be their downfall. If they do not fall by the laws of men, they surely fall by the consequences of what wicked things they do.
Job 20:6 is supported by Isaiah's speech of Lucifer, and we know the devil is desperately wicked! "For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High." (Isa. 14:13 - 14) One of the key elements of a wicked person is also their downfall; pride. Self-exaltation is paramount to a nosebleed descent to a fall! And what happens when that wicked one falls? Often the blame game, but they fail to notice those other fingers pointing back at them when they point at anyone but themselves!
Job 20:7 is likened to another psalm of David's: "Do unto them as unto the Midianites; as to Sisera, as to Jabin, at the brook of Kison: Which perished at Endor: they became as dung for the earth." (Psa. 83:9 - 10) Oh, how great is God's judgment, that the wicked oft times becomes as excrete, nothingness that they deserve for their behavior. And we should pray that it teach them to change their heart; pray that God use their condition to move them to a contrite heart and seek His face!
"Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to Thy mercy remember Thou me for Thy goodness' sake, O LORD." (Psa. 25:7). David asked for forgiveness of the sins of his youth, but the unrighteous wicked are blind to their sinfulness. Their corruption and perversity are right in their eyes! "There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness. There is a generation, O how lofty are their eyes! And their eyelids are lifted up." (Prov. 30:12 - 13) The wicked see nothing wrong with their younger days, and confess no transgression of those days! Job 20:11 find similar concept here.
Support for Job 20:17 is here in another verse from Jeremiah: "Thus saith the LORD; 'Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.'" (Jer. 17:5 - 6) The wicked seem never to believe in trusting in God, nor in His word, nor His omnipotence. Once again, the consequences of misplaced trust result in lost blessings; missed opportunity to taste the goodness of the Lord. Oh, pray for them, that they may repent and trust in Jesus instead of the world's idolatry, which is money and power that come with it perversion, corruption, disaster and downfall!
"There is a sore evil which I have seen under the sun, namely, riches kept for the owners thereof to their hurt. But those riches perish by evil travail: and he begetteth a son, and there is nothing in his hand. As he came forth of his mother's womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand." (Eccl. 5:13 - 15) Job 20:20 is certainly supported by Solomon's book. Another key element of identifying a wicked person by their fruit is selfishness and greed. The wicked hoard material wealth beyond their need, as for some length of time beyond what years they know not whether they shall come. For those who hoard material wealth, and think on a long life, Jesus told this to them in parable: "But God said unto him, 'Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?' So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God." (Luke 12:20 - 21) So we shall have a contrast between the righteous and wicked; "The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it." (Prov. 29:7) I know of a person who acted wickedly, extorted money, and then heard it was out of their hand as fast as it got there. What did it profit them to permanently lose their friend, only to lose their wrongly gained wealth so swiftly as well? Ill-gotten goods do not profit spiritually, but rather demonstrate a sinful nature that does not fear/believe what the Lord can do to them. "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do His commandments: His praise endureth for ever." (Psa. 111:10) Am I saying the wicked are not wise? Yes, I am! "For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matt. 16:26) And why should the wicked fear God? "But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear Him, which after He hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear Him." (Luke 12:5) The saved and the wise fear God, lest they become eternal charcoal! But the wicked are not moved to repentance by this fact for unbelief.
It is not far from the Lord to apply His wrath to those in the midst of doing wickedly, as Job 20:23 says. It is supported in the Torah as well! "And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp. And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague." (Num. 11:32 - 33) Because the people were counted as lusting wickedly for meat, God killed many while the meat ws still being chewed in their mouths! One occasionally hears of adultery wherein one of them is no more while in the very act. God knows how to deal with the godly and the ungodly!
Now Job has an answer to his "good buddy" Zophar concerning the wicked, and it, too is supported in various other places in the bible: "Wherefore do the wicked live, become old, yea, are mighty in power? Their seed is established in their sight with them, and their offspring before their eyes. Their houses are safe from fear, neither is the rod of God upon them. Their bull gendereth, and faileth not; their cow calveth, and casteth not her calf. They send forth their little ones like a flock, and their children dance. They take the timbrel and harp, and rejoice at the sound of the organ. They spend their days in wealth, and in a moment go down to the grave. Therefore they say unto God, Depart from us; for we desire not the knowledge of thy ways. What is the Almighty, that we should serve Him? And what profit should we have, if we pray unto Him? Lo, their good is not in their hand: the counsel of the wicked is far from me. How oft is the candle of the wicked put out! and how oft cometh their destruction upon them! God distributeth sorrows in His anger. They are as stubble before the wind, and as chaff that the storm carrieth away. God layeth up his iniquity for his children: He rewardeth him, and he shall know it. His eyes shall see his destruction, and he shall drink of the wrath of the Almighty. For what pleasure hath he in his house after him, when the number of his months is cut off in the midst? Shall any teach God knowledge? Seeing He judgeth those that are high. One dieth in his full strength, being wholly at ease and quiet. His breasts are full of milk, and his bones are moistened with marrow. And another dieth in the bitterness of his soul, and never eateth with pleasure. They shall lie down alike in the dust, and the worms shall cover them." (Job 21:7 - 26) Yes, another long read, my apologies again. But these are necessary for good enlightenment.
Job 21:7-16 has Job proclaiming that Zophar's thesis is flawed, because not all wicked people discover consequences to their wickedness in this life, and David supports this in one of his psalms; "From men which are Thy hand, O LORD, from men of the world, which have their portion in this life, and whose belly Thou fillest with Thy hid treasure: they are full of children, and leave the rest of their substance to their babes." (Psa. 17:14) The wicked receive their portion most assuredly after this life! "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God." (1 Cor. 6:9 - 10) "For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm. They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men. Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment. Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish. They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily. They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth... For, lo, they that are far from Thee shall perish: Thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from Thee." (Psa. 73:3 - 9, 27) Asaph's psalm and Paul's first letter to the Corinthians seem to agree with each other on the end portion of the wicked, even though they seem to prosper all their days on the earth. Let us visit Jesus' account of the wicked, shall we? "There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day: And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores, and desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, 'Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.' But Abraham said, 'Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.' Then he said, 'I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.' Abraham saith unto him, 'They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.' And he said, 'Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.' And he said unto him, 'If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.'" (Luke 16:19 - 31) The rich man had no mercy nor compassion for the poor man, and how could he miss him at his front gate? He had opportunity, that he might receive compassion and forgiveness for his sins; the sins of idolatry of his material wealth, and the sin of mercilessness for the poor and the hungry.
"He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still."(Rev. 22:11) When Christ comes, the opportunity to repent will be lost. The sluggard, yea, the procrastinator, if they tarry too long, they will be lost forever in their wickedness!
So here we have the answer to what the wicked have coming. Jesus tells us that this life is not fair to all the good or all the evil. Everyone, just and unjust, receives both good times and bad times in this life: "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust." (Matt. 5:44 - 45) However, as we previously read here from 1 Cor. 6:9 - 10, when we all pass from this life to the next, whether we were good, or whether we were evil; whether we chose to believe on Jesus or not, those who were wicked to the end, they have coming the same thing as the rich man who had no mercy or compassion on Lazarus - the flame that is not quenched! Pray for them, that they should repent!