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Psalm 10

Prayer for Deliverance from Enemies


Why, O L ord, do you stand far off?

Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?


In arrogance the wicked persecute the poor—

let them be caught in the schemes they have devised.



For the wicked boast of the desires of their heart,

those greedy for gain curse and renounce the L ord.


In the pride of their countenance the wicked say, “God will not seek it out”;

all their thoughts are, “There is no God.”



Their ways prosper at all times;

your judgments are on high, out of their sight;

as for their foes, they scoff at them.


They think in their heart, “We shall not be moved;

throughout all generations we shall not meet adversity.”



Their mouths are filled with cursing and deceit and oppression;

under their tongues are mischief and iniquity.


They sit in ambush in the villages;

in hiding places they murder the innocent.


Their eyes stealthily watch for the helpless;


they lurk in secret like a lion in its covert;

they lurk that they may seize the poor;

they seize the poor and drag them off in their net.



They stoop, they crouch,

and the helpless fall by their might.


They think in their heart, “God has forgotten,

he has hidden his face, he will never see it.”



Rise up, O L ord; O God, lift up your hand;

do not forget the oppressed.


Why do the wicked renounce God,

and say in their hearts, “You will not call us to account”?



But you do see! Indeed you note trouble and grief,

that you may take it into your hands;

the helpless commit themselves to you;

you have been the helper of the orphan.



Break the arm of the wicked and evildoers;

seek out their wickedness until you find none.


The L ord is king forever and ever;

the nations shall perish from his land.



O L ord, you will hear the desire of the meek;

you will strengthen their heart, you will incline your ear


to do justice for the orphan and the oppressed,

so that those from earth may strike terror no more.

17. O Jehovah, thou hast heard the desire of the needy. In these words the prophet confirms what I have just now said, that when hypocrites prevail in the Church, or exceed the faithful in number, we ought, unceasingly, to beseech God to root them out; for such a confused and shameful state of things ought surely to be matter of deep grief to all the true servants of God. By these words, also, the Holy Spirit assures us, that what of old God granted to the fathers in answer to their prayers, we at the present day will obtain, provided we have that anxious solicitude about the deliverance of the Church which we ought to entertain. The clause which follows, Thou wilt direct their hearts, is variously interpreted by expositors. Some think it signifies the same thing, as if it had been said, Thou wilt give success to their desires. According to others, the meaning is, Thou wilt frame and sanctify their hearts by thy grace, that they may ask nothing in prayer but what is right and according to the divine will, as Paul teaches us that the Holy Spirit

“stirs up within us groanings which cannot be uttered,” (Romans 8:26)

Both these expositions are perhaps too forced. David, in this clause, magnifies the grace of God in sustaining and comforting his servants in the midst of their troubles and distresses, that they may not sink into despondency, — in furnishing them with fortitude and patience, - in inspiring them with good hope, - and in stirring them up also to prayer. This is the import of the verb כין, Kin, which signifies not only to direct, but also to establish. It is a singular blessing which God confers upon us, when, in the midst of temptation, he upholds our hearts, and does not suffer them to recede from him, or to turn aside to any other quarter for support and deliverance. The meaning of the clause which immediately follows, Thou wilt cause thine ear to hear, is, that it is not in vain that God directs the hearts of his people, and leads them, in obedience to his command, to look to Himself, and to call upon him in hope and patience — it is not in vain, because his ears are never shut against their groanings. Thus the mutual harmony between two religious exercises is here commended. God does not suffer the faith of his servants to faint or fail, nor does he suffer them to desist from praying; but he keeps them near him by faith and prayer, until it actually appear that their hope has been neither vain nor ineffectual. The sentence might, not improperly, be rendered thus: Thou shalt establish their heart, until thine ear hear them.

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