Study

a Bible passage

Click a verse to see commentary
Select a resource above

31. Psalm 31

In thee, O Lord, do I put my trust; let me never be ashamed: deliver me in thy righteousness.

2Bow down thine ear to me; deliver me speedily: be thou my strong rock, for an 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.

4Pull me out of the net that they have laid privily for me: for thou art my strength.

5Into thine hand I commit my spirit: thou hast redeemed me, O Lord God of truth.

6I have hated them that regard lying vanities: but I trust in the Lord.

7I will be glad and rejoice in thy mercy: for thou hast considered my trouble; thou hast known my soul in adversities;

8And hast not shut me up into the hand of the enemy: thou hast set my feet in a large room.

9Have mercy upon me, O Lord, for I am in trouble: mine eye is consumed with grief, yea, my soul and my belly.

10For my life is spent with grief, and my years with sighing: my strength faileth because of mine iniquity, and my bones are consumed.

11I was a reproach among all mine enemies, but especially among my neighbours, 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 slander of many: fear was on every side: while they took counsel together against me, they devised to take away my life.

14But I trusted in thee, O Lord: 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 for thy mercies’ sake.

17Let me not be ashamed, O Lord; for I have called upon thee: let the wicked be ashamed, and let them be silent in the grave.

18Let the lying lips be put to silence; which speak grievous things proudly and contemptuously against the righteous.

19 Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!

20Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence from the pride of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.

21Blessed be the Lord: for he hath shewed me his marvellous kindness in a strong city.

22For 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.

23O love the Lord, all ye his saints: for the Lord preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer.

24Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.

6. I hate all that give heed to lying vanities. In order the better to express that his faith was firmly fixed on God, he affirms that he was free from the vile affections which usually turn away our minds from God, and under which unbelievers for the most part labor. For we know that by contrasting things which are opposite, a subject is better illustrated. To restrict the Hebrew word הבל, hebel, which we have rendered vanities, to magical arts, as some interpreters do, is absurd. 641641     Hammond considers “vanities” as referring to the practice of superstitiously having recourse to auguries and divinations for advice and direction, a practice which prevailed among the heathen, when they met with any difficulty or danger. To the responses of augury, they showed the greatest regard; although they were deceived and disappointed in the confidence which they reposed in them. David declares that he detested all such practices, and trusted for aid to God alone. French and Skinner, by lying vanities, understand idols. “Idols,” says Walford, “are often thus denominated; though the term is not to be confined to this sense, as all the pursuits of iniquity may be justly comprehended under it. - Vide Deuteronomy 32:21; Jonah 2:8.” I confess, indeed, that the Orientals were so much addicted to these impostures, that it was a common evil among them. But as the devices by which Satan ensnares the minds of men, and the allurements by which he draws them away from God, are innumerable, it is not at all probable that the prophet mentions one species only. Whatever vain hopes, therefore, we form to ourselves, which may draw us off from our confidence in God, David generally denominates vanities, yea, false or lying vanities, because, although they feed us for a time with magnificent promises, in the end they beguile and disappoint us. He affirms, therefore, that casting away the vanities which men usually invent to support their hopes, he relies solely on God. And as men not only intoxicate themselves personally with the deceitful allurements of the world, but in this respect also deceive one another, the prophet expressly declares, with a view that we may carefully avoid them, unless we wish to be wilfully entangled in their dangerous toils, that he hated all who involved themselves in such lies. The second clause, I have trusted in Jehovah, must be read in connection with the first, because it both assigns the cause of his hatred of lying vanities, and shows that it is impossible for men to have any true faith in God, unless they abhor whatever would draw them away from him.


VIEWNAME is study