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Psalm 14:5

ESV There they are in great terror, for God is with the generation of the righteous.
NIV But there they are, overwhelmed with dread, for God is present in the company of the righteous.
NASB There they are in great dread, For God is with a righteous generation.
CSB Then they will be filled with dread, for God is with those who are righteous.
NLT Terror will grip them, for God is with those who obey him.
KJV There were they in great fear: for God is in the generation of the righteous.

What does Psalm 14:5 mean?

David expresses confidence that the Lord will punish those who deny His existence (Psalm 14:1) and oppress His people (Psalm 14:4). In harmony with other psalmists (Psalm 82:5), he has pointed out the stubborn evil of those who reject God. He has used common Old Testament imagery for those who oppress others through their unspiritual perspectives (Micah 3:1–3).

Though it sometimes seems that wickedness is being left unpunished (Psalm 73:2–3; Habakkuk 1:2–4), God is not being fooled (Hebrews 4:13). David knows that one day (Revelation 19:11–16; 20:11–15), these oppressors will be stricken with the terror of God's holy judgment (Hebrews 10:31). God is on the side of the righteous, and no enemy of the righteous can prevail.

The apostle John notes in 1 John 4:4 that "he who is in [believers] is greater than he who is in the world." Jude writes about those who oppose God and godly truth: "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones, to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way" (Jude 1:14–15).
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