The wicked in [his] pride doth persecute the poor
The "poor" is the good and gracious man, who is commonly poor in this world's things, and is sensibly poor in spirit, or sensible of his spiritual poverty; or he is so called because "afflicted", as the word signifies; and he is afflicted because he is poor: these two characters generally go together. The "wicked" man is the wicked one, the lawless one, the man of sin, and son of perdition, antichrist, the great persecutor of Christ's poor saints and faithful witnesses, more or less, ever since he has been in power; and which arises from the "pride" of his heart, not bearing that any should refuse to pay homage to him, contradict his will, or dissent from him. The word F19 signifies to follow after, to pursue, as Jarchi, Aben Ezra, Kimchi, and Ben Melech, interpret it; and "to pursue hotly", as it is rendered in ( Genesis 31:36 ) ; and denotes the vehemence and heat of his wrath and fury, with which antichrist persecutes the followers of the Lamb; hence persecution is compared to the heat of the sun, ( Matthew 13:6 Matthew 13:21 ) ; Some render the words, "through the pride of the wicked the poor is burned", or "the poor burns" F20: which may be understood either literally, of the burning of the martyrs of Jesus by antichrist, as here in Queen Mary's days; and which was foretold, that some of the saints should fall by flame, as well as by sword, captivity, and spoil; and to which that part of the description of Christ answers, whose feet are said to be like fine brass, as if it burned in a furnace; and which is prefaced to the epistle to the church at Thyatira, which is an emblem of the apostate church: see ( Daniel 11:33 ) ( Revelation 1:15 ) ( 2:18 ) ; or figuratively, of the poor saints burning with grief at the pride and wickedness of the man of sin, and with zeal for the honour and glory of God; see ( 2 Corinthians 11:29 ) ( Song of Solomon 8:6 ) ( Psalms 69:9 ) ;
let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined:
we read the words as a petition; and so the sense is, let the wicked persecutors be taken in the wicked and crafty schemes which they have devised for the hurt of others, as they are, or will be; see ( Psalms 9:15 Psalms 9:16 ) . But the psalmist is not yet come to petitions, nor does he until ( Psalms 10:12 ) ; but is all along describing the wickedness of the wicked one. It seems better therefore to render the words as do the Septuagint and Vulgate Latin versions, "they are taken in the devices that they have imagined": and the meaning is, that the poor, who are persecuted by the wicked, are taken by their crafty schemes they lay for them, as Jarchi interprets it, and are put to death by them. So these words show the issue and event of persecution: and this sense best agrees with the boasted success of the wicked man ( Psalms 10:3 ) .