Deuteronomy 25:17-19 – Trusting God to Work Out Justice Against the Wicked

Posted: April 14, 2017 in 05-Deuteronomy
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Deuteronomy 25:17-19

Remembering the Amalekites


Have you ever had someone hurt you badly? Just plain out screwed you over to be mean to you? We have probably all had that happen to us at one point or another in our lives. For me, that instance would have to be when I was going through my divorce from my first wife. Our marriage had been rocky for the last 6 years that we were together. She had issues with drugs after the death of her brother. Trouble with the law resulted. Sending her to rehab the first time resulted in her having an affair with guy she met there. Reconciliation. Changed feelings. Changed addictions for her to spending money. Deep seeded anger for me that would not go away. Then there was my affair. Two years of attempted reconciliation and then the final split in April 1993. Although I did not see what was to be my second wife for more than nine months after my separation from my first wife, the cast was set. The war was on as far as my first wife was concerned. Then began the most horrendous divorce known to man. Fifteen months of antagonism and hatred spewed out toward me.


Part of the torment of our separation was preventing me from seeing my children on the appointed weekends and each Wednesday during the week. My girls were 8 and 3 at this time. Very young and impressionable. Pretty much every time I would try to pick them up, she would prevent it! Regardless of what was going on between my first wife and me, I loved my girls and wanted to see them. This prevention happened with such regularity that I finally had to take legal action. My lawyer brought a contempt of court complaint against my first wife. When we got our emergency hearing date for few weeks later and there was back and forth communications between lawyers, my first wife pulled out the most dastardly accusation that someone could bring against a father who dearly loved his girls. She claimed that the reason that she had been withholding the kids from me was that I had molested my oldest daughter the last time that she had allowed them to go with me for a weekend.


Talk about your cruelest of blows. This was just plain out mean and dirty. If you know anything about me and my girls, you would know that I adore them and would do anything to keep them from pain and suffering. With that accusation, the world immediately changed. My first wife, initially, had the high ground and she had massacred me in battle. It was such a scary time. The court asked the Sheriff’s Department to administer a lie-detector test on me as to what happened on that last visitation that the girls had with me. If I failed the test (if they detected lies), they were going to bring charges against me. My very future was on the line. However, there was this calm that came over me. You don’t have to dress up the truth. The truth is its own defense.


Even with the accusation dismissed by the cops, DSS still got involved in our lives and would be for the next three years. Before DSS had interviewed me, they had spent a lot of time with my first wife and the girls and during this time, I was painted as a villain, a mean, abusive man. It wasn’t until they actually came to interview me that they began to see that there was a great disparity between what my first wife was saying about me and the reality of me. Although I was unable to see my girls for more than six months because of this accusation, the tide was slowly turning my way. Ultimately, when my first wife and her mother attacked me publicly in the lobby of the family court courthouse for what I “was doing to the children!” I quietly took there abuse and walked on. It was like I was being punished in their eyes for leaving their army or something. It was only after that incident that my first wife became the focus of DSS and not me. Ultimately, after observing my first wife for a while, they decided to remove the children from her care. After spending the next two and half years with my parents, I was finally awarded custody of my children in 1996.


From 1993 forward, my first wife’s whole aim in life was to destroy me. Ultimately, her hatred for me consumed her so much that she literally drove everyone out of her life and she became isolated in her own little world. My anger toward her in those early years gave way to forgiveness and pity. Her own hatred ultimately destroyed the person that she once was.


It was that idea of how God orchestrates justice if we will only trust Him that came to mind when reading through this passage today, Deuteronomy 25:17-19:


17 Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt. 18 When you were weary and worn out, they met you on your journey and attacked all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God. 19 When the Lord your God gives you rest from all the enemies around you in the land he is giving you to possess as an inheritance, you shall blot out the name of Amalek from under heaven. Do not forget!


Them they were to overcome by force; wickedness was to be removed by the extinction of the wicked. Moses has already repeatedly reminded the Israelites that they had utterly to destroy the wicked nations of Canaan; and he here closes this discourse by reminding them that there was a nation outside of Canaan which was also doomed, and which they were to root out. This was Amalek, which had attacked the Israelites in their journey at Rephidim, and had taken advantage of their exhausted condition to harass their rear and destroy those who, faint and weary, had lagged behind. For this they had been already punished by the Israelites, who, led on by Joshua, had turned upon them and discomfited them with the edge of the sword. This, however, was not enough; Amalek was to be utterly destroyed, and this the Israelites were to effect as soon as the Lord had given them rest in the Promised Land. It was not, however, till the time of David that this was done.


God will have justice over wickedness, we must remember this. Even though it may seem that it will never come, God will turn evil against itself and destroy the evildoers. We may not even see it our lifetimes. But rest assured, God will have justice over evil, according to His timetable. Just like when my first wife and I were going through our divorce, it got ugly and bitter. My ex-wife wanted to destroy me in whatever way she could. However, God has His justice. I must trust that I cannot return evil for evil on my own merits. God will have His victory over sin and evil. The Amalekites were a mean people who, though they knew of God’s delivering exploits when it came to the Israelites, they purposely thumbed their nose at God and were a constant battling force against the Israelites. They were a cruel and ruthless people. However, God had His victory over their evil ways. God always wins.


Let us remember to trust God with vengeance and He will have His way. Let us not try to return evil with evil. God will work it out. He always does. He always wins.



Amen and Amen.

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