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7. Psalm 7

O Lord my God, in thee do I put my trust: save me from all them that persecute me, and deliver me:

2Lest he tear my soul like a lion, rending it in pieces, while there is none to deliver.

3O Lord my God, if I have done this; if there be iniquity in my hands;

4If I have rewarded evil unto him that was at peace with me; (yea, I have delivered him that without cause is mine enemy:)

5Let the enemy persecute my soul, and take it; yea, let him tread down my life upon the earth, and lay mine honour in the dust. Selah.

6Arise, O Lord, in thine anger, lift up thyself because of the rage of mine enemies: and awake for me to the judgment that thou hast commanded.

7So shall the congregation of the people compass thee about: for their sakes therefore return thou on high.

8The Lord shall judge the people: judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness, and according to mine integrity that is in me.

9Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end; but establish the just: for the righteous God trieth the hearts and reins.

10My defence is of God, which saveth the upright in heart.

11God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.

12If he turn not, he will whet his sword; he hath bent his bow, and made it ready.

13He hath also prepared for him the instruments of death; he ordaineth his arrows against the persecutors.

14Behold, he travaileth with iniquity, and hath conceived mischief, and brought forth falsehood.

15He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made.

16His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate.

17I will praise the Lord according to his righteousness: and will sing praise to the name of the Lord most high.

9 Let the malice of the wicked come to an endow I beseech thee. David, in the first place, prays that God would restrain the malice of his enemies, and bring it to an end; from which it follows, that his affliction had been of long duration. Others suppose that this is rather a dreadful imprecation, and they explain the Hebrew word גמר, gamar, somewhat differently. Instead of rendering it to cease, and to come to an end, as I have done, they understand it to make to cease, which is equivalent to destroy or to consume. 109109     “Les autres estiment plustost que ce soit une vehemente imprecation, et exposent ce mot Hebrieu un peu autrement. Car en lieu que nous le traduisons Cesser et Prendre fin, ils le prenent pour Faire cesser, qui est Destruire et Consumer.”—Fr. Thus, according to them, David wishes that God would cause the mischief which the wicked devise to fall upon their own heads: Let the wickedness of the wicked consume them But, in my opinion, the former interpretation is the more simple, namely, that David beseeches God to bring his troubles to a termination. Accordingly there follows immediately after the corresponding prayer Direct thou the righteous, or establish him; for it is of little importance which of these two readings we adopt. The meaning is, that God would re-establish and uphold the righteous, who are wrongfully oppressed, and thus make it evident that they are continued in their estate by the power of God, notwithstanding the persecution to which they are subjected.—For God searcheth the hearts The Hebrew copulative is here very properly translated by the causal particle for, since David, without doubt, adds this clause as an argument to enforce his prayer. He now declares, for the third time, that, trusting to the testimony of a good conscience, he comes before God with confidence; but here he expresses something more than he had done before, namely, that he not only showed his innocence, by his external conduct, but had also cultivated purity in the secret affection of his heart. He seems to set this confidence in opposition to the insolence and boasting of his enemies, by whom, it is probable, such calumnies had been circulated among the people concerning him, as constrained him in his deep affliction to present his heart and reins to be tried by God. Perhaps, also, he speaks in this manner, in order to divest them of all those plausible but false and deceitful pretenses, which they made use of for the purpose of deceiving men, and if they succeeded in doing this they were satisfied. 110110     “Il se peut faire aussi qu’il parle ainsi pour oster toutes ces belles apparances bien fardees dont ils se servoyent pour abuser les hommes et ce leur estoit assez.”—Fr. He shows that, although they might triumph before the world, and receive the applause of the multitude, they, nevertheless, gained nothing, inasmuch as they would, by and by, have to make their appearance before the judgment-seat of God, where the question would not be, What were their titles? or, What was the splendour of their actions? but how it stood as to the purity of their hearts.


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