(how’s that for a blog title? lol!)
I think they simply highlight the tension seen in Scripture between the Cross of Christ and his Resurrection from the dead. In fact, I actually see these two events as working in tandem more than in tension (maybe that is the same thing?) – they are dependent on each other and not working against each other.
God has given us an answer to the problem of evil in this world and and it is seen in the cross and resurrection of Jesus. Through the cross we see that judgment has been fully meted out against all wickedness and the problem of the power of sin dealt with. Through the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead we see death and sin and all evil overcome (at least the power of these things). I think it is in Colossians where we read that through the cross (as validated by the resurrection) Jesus triumphed over his enemies and made a spectacle of them (Col 2:15) so we know victory is won, yet we await the time of its complete fulfillment.
So, while it can seem like evil rears it’s ugly head and attempts to regain control or power over things and people, it is yet again itself overcome. Why? Because of the Cross of Christ and his Resurrection from the Dead.
Like others I haven’t rejoiced in the death of the wicked, as in hooting and hollering and sneering and jeering, taunting, etc, but have had a sigh of relief that justice was indeed carried out, but it is also a sigh of relief from a heavy heart about the ongoing problem of evil and injustice and its effects and consequences.