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He Will Not Forsake His Saints

11This psalm is an acrostic poem, each stanza beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet Of David.

1Fret not yourself because of evildoers;
be not envious of wrongdoers!
2For they will soon fade like the grass
and wither like the green herb.

3Trust in the Lord, and do good;
dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.22Or and feed on faithfulness, or and find safe pasture
4Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

5Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him, and he will act.
6He will bring forth your righteousness as the light,
and your justice as the noonday.

7Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;
fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way,
over the man who carries out evil devices!

8Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath!
Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
9For the evildoers shall be cut off,
but those who wait for the Lord shall inherit the land.

10In just a little while, the wicked will be no more;
though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there.
11But the meek shall inherit the land
and delight themselves in abundant peace.

12The wicked plots against the righteous
and gnashes his teeth at him,
13but the Lord laughs at the wicked,
for he sees that his day is coming.

14The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows
to bring down the poor and needy,
to slay those whose way is upright;
15their sword shall enter their own heart,
and their bows shall be broken.

16Better is the little that the righteous has
than the abundance of many wicked.
17For the arms of the wicked shall be broken,
but the Lord upholds the righteous.

18The Lord knows the days of the blameless,
and their heritage will remain forever;
19they are not put to shame in evil times;
in the days of famine they have abundance.

20But the wicked will perish;
the enemies of the Lord are like the glory of the pastures;
they vanish—like smoke they vanish away.

21The wicked borrows but does not pay back,
but the righteous is generous and gives;
22for those blessed by the Lord33Hebrew by him shall inherit the land,
but those cursed by him shall be cut off.

23The steps of a man are established by the Lord,
when he delights in his way;
24though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong,
for the Lord upholds his hand.

25I have been young, and now am old,
yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken
or his children begging for bread.
26He is ever lending generously,
and his children become a blessing.

27Turn away from evil and do good;
so shall you dwell forever.
28For the Lord loves justice;
he will not forsake his saints.
They are preserved forever,
but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.
29The righteous shall inherit the land
and dwell upon it forever.

30The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom,
and his tongue speaks justice.
31The law of his God is in his heart;
his steps do not slip.

32The wicked watches for the righteous
and seeks to put him to death.
33The Lord will not abandon him to his power
or let him be condemned when he is brought to trial.

34Wait for the Lord and keep his way,
and he will exalt you to inherit the land;
you will look on when the wicked are cut off.

35I have seen a wicked, ruthless man,
spreading himself like a green laurel tree.44The identity of this tree is uncertain
36But he passed away,55Or But one passed by and behold, he was no more;
though I sought him, he could not be found.

37Mark the blameless and behold the upright,
for there is a future for the man of peace.
38But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed;
the future of the wicked shall be cut off.

39The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord;
he is their stronghold in the time of trouble.
40The Lord helps them and delivers them;
he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
because they take refuge in him.


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Ps 37:1-40. A composed and uniform trust in God and a constant course of integrity are urged in view of the blessedness of the truly pious, contrasted in various aspects with the final ruin of the wicked. Thus the wisdom and justice of God's providence are vindicated, and its seeming inequalities, which excite the cavils of the wicked and the distrust of the pious, are explained. David's personal history abundantly illustrates the Psalm.

1, 2. The general sentiment of the whole Psalm is expressed. The righteous need not be vexed by the prosperity of the wicked; for it is transient, and their destiny undesirable.

3. Trust—sure of safety.

shalt thou dwell—or, "dwell thou"; repose quietly.

verily … fed—or, "feed on truth," God's promise (Ps 36:5; compare Ho 12:1).

4. desires—(Ps 20:5; 21:2), what is lawful and right, really good (Ps 84:11).

5. Commit thy way—(Pr 16:3). Works—what you have to do and cannot set forth as a burden.

trust … in him—literally, "on Him." He will do what you cannot (compare Ps 22:8; 31:6). He will not suffer your character to remain under suspicion.

7, 8. Rest in—literally, "Be silent to the Lord."

and wait—Be submissive—avoid petulance and murmurings, anger and rash doing.

9. Two reasons: The prosperity of the wicked is short; and the pious, by humble trust, will secure all covenant blessing, denoted here by "inherit the earth" (compare Ps 25:13).

10, 11. shall not be—literally, "is not"—is not to be found.

11. peace—includes prosperity.

12. gnasheth … teeth—in beastly rage.

13. (Compare Ps 2:4).

seeth—knows certainly.

his day—of punishment, long delayed, shall yet come (Heb 10:37).

14, 15. sword, and … bow—for any instruments of violence.

slay—literally, "slaughter" (1Sa 25:11).

poor and needy—God's people (Ps 10:17; 12:5). The punishment of the wicked as drawn on themselves—often mentioned (compare Ps 7:15, 16; 35:8).

16. riches—literally, "noise and tumult," as incidental to much wealth (compare Ps 39:6). Thus the contrast with the "little" of one man is more vivid.

17. Even the members of the body needed to hold weapons are destroyed.

18, 19. God, who knows His people's changes, provides against evil and supplies all their need.

20. While the wicked, however mighty, are destroyed, and that utterly, as smoke which vanishes and leaves no trace.




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