Ps 38:1-22. To bring to remembrance, or,
remind God of His mercy and himself of his sin. Appealing to God for
relief from His heavy chastisement, the Psalmist avows his integrity
before men, complains of the defection of friends and persecution of
enemies, and in a submissive spirit, casting himself on God, with
penitent confession he pleads God's covenant relation and his innocence
of the charges of his enemies, and prays for divine comfort and
1-4. He deprecates deserved punishment, which
is described (Ps 6:1), under
the figure of bodily disease [Ps 38:3].
2. arrows … and thy hand—the sharp
and heavy afflictions he suffered (De 32:23).
4. iniquities—afflictions in punishment
of sin (2Sa 16:12; Ps 31:10; 40:12).
gone over mine head—as a flood.
5-8. The loathsomeness, corruption, and
wasting torture of severe physical disease set forth his mental anguish
38:6]. It is possible some
bodily disease was connected. The
loins are the seat of strength. His
exhaustion left him only the power to groan [Ps 38:9].
9. That God can hear (Ro 8:26).
10. My heart panteth—as if barely
light … from me—utter exhaustion
11, 12. Friends desert, but foes increase in
12. seek after my life—(1Sa 20:1;
13, 14. He patiently submits, uttering no
reproaches or replies (Joh 19:9) to
their insulting speeches;
15-17. for he is confident the
Lord—literally, "Sovereign" (to whom
he was a servant), would answer his prayer (Ps 3:4; 4:1), and not permit their triumph in
his partial halting, of which he was in danger.
18. Consciousness of sin makes suffering
pungent, and suffering, rightly received, leads to confession.
19, 20. Still, while humbled before God, he is
the victim of deadly enemies, full of malice and treachery.
enemies are lively—literally, "of
life," who would take my life, that is, deadly.
21, 22. (Compare Ps 22:19;
35:3). All terms of frequent
use. In this Psalm the language is generally susceptible of application
to Christ as a sufferer, David, as such, typifying Him. This does not
require us to apply the confessions of sin, but only the pains or
penalties which He bore for us.