Salem TrialsBy Rabbi Jack Abramowitz
Another Psalm of Asaf: G-d is known in Judah and His Name is revered throughout Israel; His Temple is in Jerusalem, formerly called Shalem (Salem). Jerusalem is fated to withstand the Assyrian onslaught that will carry off the Ten Tribes (or perhaps the war of Gog and Magog). G-d is illuminated through these deeds, which show His might.
The invaders of Jerusalem must have taken leave of their senses to think they could triumph. They lost their skills and were easily conquered. G-d chastised them and their armies were overturned. No one can stand in the face of G-d’s anger. The world shook with fear, calming down only after the Assyrian force was defeated. This will also be the case when G-d judges the wicked and redeems the righteous.
When the evil people see the acts of G-d, they are moved to praise Him. (See Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel chapter 3.) When it reaches the point that even the evil praise Him, G-d refrains from punishing the less heinous. (If the truly evil people finally understand, the less evil certainly get it!) Those who are close to G-d should make their vows to Him and fulfill them; the whole world will bring offerings to Him in the Temple, as He has triumphed over the leaders of all the nations.