שֹׁחַד מֵחֵק רָשָׁע-יִקָּח לְהַטּוֹת אָרְחוֹת מִשְׁפָּט
"Shochad mechek rasha-yikach l'hatot archot mishpat."
"A bribe from the bosom of a wicked man-he shall take to tilt the ways of justice."
Or the kind of degenerate person who will accept the bribe of a wicked person in order to do that wicked person's bidding.
And commentaries like Metzudat David definitely interpret it that way. And certainly Shlomo Hamelech/King Solomon intended that interpretation.
But Shlomo Hamelech also had Rashi's interpretation in mind.
Rashi interprets it as an interaction between Hashem and someone who knows he is evil...and wants to change.
"A bribe from the bosom of a wicked man--He will take..." — The Holy One Blessed Be He accepts words of humility and placation from the bosom of the reshaim [evil ones, intentional sinners]; that is to say, in secret between Him and them.
"...to tilt the ways of justice." — to overturn his din [verdict] from bad to good.
Malbim and others define rasha as an intentional sinner.
A rasha KNOWS he is doing the wrong thing. He KNOWS.
Yet if he (or she!) quietly turns to Hashem with sincere contrition and promises to change, asks for help to change...then Hashem overturns the original din from bad to good.
Once again, Hashem doesn't necessarily demand grand gestures from us.
Okay, yes, sometimes grand gestures are exactly what's needed.
But here, Rashi (and really, Shlomo Hamelech) is saying that even if you are a wicked person and you are WILLINGLY & KNOWINGLY being awful...you can simply turn to Hashem in a private moment (as signified by "from the bosom"), humbly submit to Him (by confessing your awfulness) and promise to be better, tell Hashem how much you'd like to be better, and ask Him to help you.
And voilà! The negative consequences in store for you transform into positive consequences.
And probably most of you aren't even intentional sinners, but accidental & occasional ones—which means that you have even more to be optimistic about.
So there we go.
Happy teshuvah to us all!