Half-Way There!By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz
Asaf begins this Psalm with the plea, “do not destroy,” as David did Psalms 57-59. He is still speaking of the Jews in exile, whom he prays will survive the tough times ahead. When Israel is redeemed from exile, they will thank G-d, Who was always nearby. When the time for redemption arrives, G-d will judge humanity as they deserve. Those who are found wanting will melt in fear. But just as G-d can cause the nations to melt, He can uphold the world with His strength.
G-d commands those obsessed with materialism to refocus their priorities; He commands the evil to overcome their pride. They’re not so much; the only real power comes from G-d, Who calls the shots. He decides who is raised and who is lowered. He has a cup in His metaphorical hand – presumably the cup of G-d’s wrath as in Isaiah 51, Jeremiah 25, et al. Israel tasted it in exile, but when they are redeemed, the wicked of the world will drain it.
Asaf says that he will sing G-d’s praises forever, even when the Jews are in exile. The pride of the wicked will be cut down, while that of the righteous will be raised.
(There are 150 Psalms in the book; this is the midpoint.)