In Psalm 13:4 David wrote: “And my enemy will say, ‘I have overcome him,’ and my adversaries will rejoice when I am shaken.” One of the most difficult aspects of enduring hardship is that it gives one’s enemies an opportunity to think “they were right” and that they have triumphed.
It may seem odd to one who has never been in a situation like that, but it is indeed one of the most odious thoughts in a difficult time: that one’s enemies believe they have won!
Of course this is EXACTLY what happened in the case of Christ on the cross. One of the most stinging parts of what He endured was that His enemies seemed to win — and how they “triumphed” over Him! Those smug religious leaders who opposed Jesus came by while He was in the very throes of death on the cross, and they were NOT gracious. They taunted Him: “He saved others; He cannot save Himself …” (Matt. 27:41-42) and so on. None of us has ever endured such “exultation” by his enemies as Jesus did!
But we know the end of the story. Jesus was absolutely vindicated in the end, and His enemies were put to shame. Our trust must be that if our cause is just, that we will be too — if not in this life, then in eternity.