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Psalm 103

Thanksgiving for God’s Goodness

Of David.

1

Bless the Lord, O my soul,

and all that is within me,

bless his holy name.

2

Bless the Lord, O my soul,

and do not forget all his benefits—

3

who forgives all your iniquity,

who heals all your diseases,

4

who redeems your life from the Pit,

who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,

5

who satisfies you with good as long as you live

so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

 

6

The Lord works vindication

and justice for all who are oppressed.

7

He made known his ways to Moses,

his acts to the people of Israel.

8

The Lord is merciful and gracious,

slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

9

He will not always accuse,

nor will he keep his anger forever.

10

He does not deal with us according to our sins,

nor repay us according to our iniquities.

11

For as the heavens are high above the earth,

so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;

12

as far as the east is from the west,

so far he removes our transgressions from us.

13

As a father has compassion for his children,

so the Lord has compassion for those who fear him.

14

For he knows how we were made;

he remembers that we are dust.

 

15

As for mortals, their days are like grass;

they flourish like a flower of the field;

16

for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,

and its place knows it no more.

17

But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting

on those who fear him,

and his righteousness to children’s children,

18

to those who keep his covenant

and remember to do his commandments.

 

19

The Lord has established his throne in the heavens,

and his kingdom rules over all.

20

Bless the Lord, O you his angels,

you mighty ones who do his bidding,

obedient to his spoken word.

21

Bless the Lord, all his hosts,

his ministers that do his will.

22

Bless the Lord, all his works,

in all places of his dominion.

Bless the Lord, O my soul.


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Ps 103:1-22. A Psalm of joyous praise, in which the writer rises from a thankful acknowledgment of personal blessings to a lively celebration of God's gracious attributes, as not only intrinsically worthy of praise, but as specially suited to man's frailty. He concludes by invoking all creatures to unite in his song.

1. Bless, &c.—when God is the object, praise.

my soul—myself (Ps 3:3; 25:1), with allusion to the act, as one of intelligence.

all … within me—(De 6:5).

his holy name—(Ps 5:11), His complete moral perfections.

2. forget not all—not any, none of His benefits.

3. diseases—as penal inflictions (De 29:22; 2Ch 21:19).

4. redeemeth—Cost is implied.

destruction—literally, "pit of corruption" (Ps 16:10).

crowneth—or, "adorneth" (Ps 65:11).

tender mercies—compassions (compare Ps 25:6; 40:11).

5. By God's provision, the saint retains a youthful vigor like the eagles (Ps 92:14; compare Isa 40:31).

6. Literally, "righteousness and judgments," denoting various acts of God's government.

7. ways—of providence, &c., as usual (Ps 25:4; 67:2).

acts—literally, "wonders" (Ps 7:11; 78:17).

8-10. God's benevolence implies no merit. He shows it to sinners, who also are chastened for a time (Ex 34:6).

keep (anger)—in Le 19:18, bear a grudge (Jer 3:5, 12).

11. great—efficient.

12. removed … from us—so as no longer to affect our relations to Him.

13. pitieth—literally, "has compassion on."

14. he—"who formed," Ps 94:9.

knoweth our frame—literally, "our form."

we are dust—made of and tending to it (Ge 2:7).

15, 16. So short and frail is life that a breath may destroy it.

it is gone—literally, "it is not."

know it no more—no more recognize him (Ps 90:6; Isa 40:6-8).

17, 18. For similar contrast compare Ps 90:2-6; 102:27, 28.

18. such … covenant—limits the general terms preceding.

righteousness—as usual (Ps 7:17; 31:1).

19. God's firm and universal dominion is a pledge that He will keep His promises (Ps 11:4; 47:8).

20-22. do his commandments … word—or, literally, "so as to hearken," &c., that is, their acts of obedience are prompt, so that they are ever ready to hear, and know, and follow implicitly His declared will (compare De 26:17; Lu 1:19).

21. ye his hosts—myriads, or armies, as corresponding to angels of great power [Ps 103:20], denoting multitudes also.

22. all his works—creatures of every sort, everywhere.




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