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31. Psalm 31

1In thee, O Jehovah, do I take refuge;

Let me never be put to shame:

Deliver me in thy righteousness.

2Bow down thine ear unto me; deliver me speedily:

Be thou to me a strong rock,

A house of defence to save me.

3For thou art my rock and my fortress;

Therefore for thy name's sake lead me and guide me.

4Pluck me out of the net that they have laid privily for me;

For thou art my stronghold.

5Into thy hand I commend my spirit:

Thou hast redeemed me, O Jehovah, thou God of truth.

6I hate them that regard lying vanities;

But I trust in Jehovah.

7I will be glad and rejoice in thy lovingkindness;

For thou hast seen my affliction:

Thou hast known my soul in adversities;

8And thou hast not shut me up into the hand of the enemy;

Thou hast set my feet in a large place.

9Have mercy upon me, O Jehovah, for I am in distress:

Mine eye wasteth away with grief, yea, my soul and my body.

10For my life is spent with sorrow,

And my years with sighing:

My strength faileth because of mine iniquity,

And my bones are wasted away.

11Because of all mine adversaries I am become a reproach,

Yea, unto my neighbors exceedingly,

And a fear to mine acquaintance:

They that did see me without fled from me.

12I am forgotten as a dead man out of mind:

I am like a broken vessel.

13For I have heard the defaming of many,

Terror on every side:

While they took counsel together against me,

They devised to take away my life.

14But I trusted in thee, O Jehovah:

I said, Thou art my God.

15My times are in thy hand:

Deliver me from the hand of mine enemies, and from them that persecute me.

16Make thy face to shine upon thy servant:

Save me in thy lovingkindness.

17Let me not be put to shame, O Jehovah; for I have called upon thee:

Let the wicked be put to shame, let them be silent in Sheol.

18Let the lying lips be dumb,

Which speak against the righteous insolently,

With pride and contempt.

19Oh how great is thy goodness,

Which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee,

Which thou hast wrought for them that take refuge in thee,

Before the sons of men!

20In the covert of thy presence wilt thou hide them from the plottings of man:

Thou wilt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.

21Blessed be Jehovah;

For he hath showed me his marvellous lovingkindness in a strong city.

22As for me, I said in my haste,

I am cut off from before thine eyes:

Nevertheless thou heardest the voice of my supplications

When I cried unto thee.

23Oh love Jehovah, all ye his saints:

Jehovah preserveth the faithful,

And plentifully rewardeth him that dealeth proudly.

24Be strong, and let your heart take courage,

All ye that hope in Jehovah.

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Verses 1–8

Faith and prayer must go together, for the prayer of faith is the prevailing prayer. David gave up his soul in a special manner to God. And with the words, ver. 5, our Lord Jesus yielded up his last breath on the cross, and made his soul a free-will offering for sin, laying down his life as a ransom. But David is here as a man in distress and trouble. And his great care is about his soul, his spirit, his better part. Many think that while perplexed about their worldly affairs, and their cares multiply, they may be excused if they neglect their souls; but we are the more concerned to look to our souls, that, though the outward man perish, the inward man may suffer no damage. The redemption of the soul is so precious, that it must have ceased for ever, if Christ had not undertaken it. Having relied on God's mercy, he will be glad and rejoice in it. God looks upon our souls, when we are in trouble, to see whether they are humbled for sin, and made better by the affliction. Every believer will meet with such dangers and deliverances, until he is delivered from death, his last enemy.

Verses 9–18

David's troubles made him a man of sorrows. Herein he was a type of Christ, who was acquainted with grief. David acknowledged that his afflictions were merited by his own sins, but Christ suffered for ours. David's friends durst not give him any assistance. Let us not think it strange if thus deserted, but make sure of a Friend in heaven who will not fail. God will be sure to order and dispose all for the best, to all those who commit their spirits also into his hand. The time of life is in God's hands, to lengthen or shorten, make bitter or sweet, according to the counsel of his will. The way of man is not in himself, nor in our friend's hands, nor in our enemies' hands, but in God's. In this faith and confidence he prays that the Lord would save him for his mercies's sake, and not for any merit of his own. He prophesies the silencing of those that reproach and speak evil of the people of God. There is a day coming, when the Lord will execute judgment upon them. In the mean time, we should engage ourselves by well-doing, if possible, to silence the ignorance of foolish men.

Verses 19–24

Instead of yielding to impatience or despondency under our troubles, we should turn our thoughts to the goodness of the Lord towards those who fear and trust in Him. All comes to sinners through the wondrous gift of the only-begotten Son of God, to be the atonement for their sins. Let not any yield to unbelief, or think, under discouraging circumstances, that they are cut off from before the eyes of the Lord, and left to the pride of men. Lord, pardon our complaints and fears; increase our faith, patience, love, and gratitude; teach us to rejoice in tribulation and in hope. The deliverance of Christ, with the destruction of his enemies, ought to strengthen and comfort the hearts of believers under all their afflictions here below, that having suffered courageously with their Master, they may triumphantly enter into his joy and glory.




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