the wicked plot against the righteous
and gnash their teeth at them;
At first glance, it is easy to take this verse to justify all of the hardships we face in the world. We can feel a little better in our pain knowing that the wicked are gunning for us. But I think that it may also provide a check. How often do we plot against others or clinch our teeth in their presence. In this entire chapter, we see the righteous as meek and gentle, the evil are the one’s who are engaged in… well, evil.
But perhaps the very act of plotting and gnashing puts us in the same category with the wicked. Maybe Psalm 37: 12 and other verses like it should encourage us to be mindful of how we react to others instead of giving us reasons to expect persecutions and hardship. Sometimes we even come to expect this treatment from others if we live a holy life. So much so that we live on the defensive and begin to plot and gnash; I think that might have just created a circle.