This comes from an Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Monastary site
A week or so ago we received a letter from a women, who like many these days, has lost her job due to the present economical situation here within the United States of America. She wrote that she had worked for twenty-five years for such and such a corporation after immigrating; and then this corporation was gobbled up, and all the faithful employees were left with nothing. They declared bankruptcy she wrote, but some of the big top executives made out very nicely while most others were left penniless.
The story of this dear lady is the sad store that has been repeated over and over again throughout human history. I say that not to make lite of her situation, God forbid! Her letter and other such similar conversations we Priests here at the Monastery have had, with others in similar situations, do bring up the subject of "What happens to the wicked?" For a number of reasons, in recent years, the secular world society has pretended that no one is really wicked. We do it all the time with ourselves and others close to us, family, friends and neighbors. No, there are wicked people around; some are obvious, like the willful and unrepentant murders, drug dealers, etc...to those who oppress the whole of a society for political control and gain. Think of those who have deprived millions of people of their jobs and savings through dishonesty and larceny involving our present national and international financial crisis.
The Sacred Scriptures tell us that to deprive ordinary people or the poor of their wages is a sin that cries to heaven for vengeance: "You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether he is one of your brethren or one of the sojourners who are in your land within your towns; you shall give him his hire on the day he earns it, before the sun goes down (for he is poor, and sets his heart upon it); lest he cry against you to the LORD, and it be sin in you." (Deuteronomy 24:14-15).
Certainly these kinds of things cry out to Almighty God for vengeance even though at times it may be a legal maneuver on the part of Corporations and Employers that covers up terrible crimes. Instead of being angry and wishing evil upon such people, as Christians we must feel pity for them, for they will answer for their action on the Day of Judgment.
The Holy Scriptures tell us (give advice) to us on our attitude toward those who profit unjustly. The following are the words of Psalm 37, which speak:
1 Fret not your self because of the wicked, be not envious of wrongdoers! 2 For they will soon fade like the grass, and wither like the green herb. 3 Trust in the LORD, and do good; so you will dwell in the land, and enjoy security. 4 Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act. 6 He will bring forth your vindication as the light, and your right as the noonday. 7 Be still before the LORD, and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over him who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! 8 Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil. 9 For the wicked shall be cut off; but those who wait for the LORD shall possess the land. 10 Yet a little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look well at his place, he will not be there. 11* But the meek shall possess the land, and delight themselves in abundant prosperity. 12 The wicked plots against the righteous, and gnashes his teeth at him; 13 but the LORD laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming. 14 The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows, to bring down the poor and needy, to slay those who walk uprightly; 15 their sword shall enter their own heart, and their bows shall be broken. 16 Better is a little that the righteous has than the abundance of many wicked. 17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken; but the LORD upholds the righteous. 18 The LORD knows the days of the blameless, and their heritage will abide for ever; 19 they are not put to shame in evil times, in the days of famine they have abundance. 20 But the wicked perish; the enemies of the LORD are like the glory of the pastures, they vanish--like smoke they vanish away. 21 The wicked borrows, and cannot pay back, but the righteous is generous and gives; 22 for those blessed by the LORD shall possess the land, but those cursed by him shall be cut off. 23 The steps of a man are from the LORD, and he establishes him in whose way he delights; 24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the LORD is the stay of his hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging bread. 26 He is ever giving liberally and lending, and his children become a blessing. 27 Depart from evil, and do good; so shall you abide for ever. 28 For the LORD loves justice; he will not forsake his saints. The righteous shall be preserved for ever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. 29 The righteous shall possess the land, and dwell upon it for ever. 30 The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks justice. 31 The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip. 32 The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him. 33 The LORD will not abandon him to his power, or let him be condemned when he is brought to trial. 34 Wait for the LORD, and keep to his way, and he will exalt you to possess the land; you will look on the destruction of the wicked. 35 I have seen a wicked man overbearing, and towering like a cedar of Lebanon. * 36 Again I* passed by, and, lo, he was no more; though I sought him, he could not be found. 37 Mark the blameless man, and behold the upright, for there is posterity for the man of peace. 38 But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed; the posterity of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their refuge in the time of trouble. 40 The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked, and saves them, because they take refuge in him.
The above Psalm is an extremely important teaching we seem to have forgotten in our present day and age. Modern people (sadly too many Orthodox Christians to) have forgotten that Almighty God promises to balance the scales in the end, but only after this passing life is over. Let me express it by using a Parable of sorts: let say an Angel of the Lord appeared to you, and you have been a victim of financial and or social injustice, and the Angel said, "Would you like your rewards now, or would you prefer to have them in eternity?" please, don't say you want them now, or someone else will come along and steal them next week. Why would you want them now in this life, which is nothing but a valley of tears? Eternity last forever; this is what we learn from the life of Our Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ; of Our Lady, St. Mary the Blessed Virgin and of the Holy Apostles and Saints.
In simple terms, we need to place our total trust in Almighty God; that is why we need the glorious Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ so that we would know that the wicked do not succeed, so that we would know enough not to place our trust in the powers of this world. We who are followers, believer of Christ Jesus and members of His Holy Orthodox Tewahedo Church should not trust in the so-called security that this world promises (and never can deliver,) because we would be building our houses on sand and not on the rock of Faith, which is Our Lord God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.