Psalm 58 – God Who Judges the Earth

There is considerable dispute over both the translation and meaning of verse one: “Do you indeed decree what is right, you gods?”  Some translations have the last word replaced with “mighty lords.”  Others insist that it is “silent ones,” implying those accustomed to running things from afar.  In any case, David (for we have no reason to doubt the superscription’s claim that it is another of David’s “Psalms of the Golden Secret” – a Miktam) would certainly not speak of false gods as entities that actually did anything.

snake charmerAs one of the so-called imprecatory psalms, it speaks with sarcastic irony of the rulers and judges that are corrupt and wicked as being like deaf adders who cannot be charmed.  The psalm declares that the righteous will rejoice when God has his vengeance upon such evil men (verse 10).  It is a mistake to believe that righteous people will not do so when evil is defeated.  even the souls of those in heaven who have been slain by such men will rejoice when evil is crushed by the Lord (Revelation 6:9-10).  It is God who judges the earth!

Read or listen to audio of ESV version of this selection from this link.

/Bob’s boy
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at  For questions and help, please see the “FAQ” and “Summaries” pages there.


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