From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee
Where he now was, as is observed on the title, (See Gill on Psalms 61:1): though he was distant from his own house, and from the house of God, he did not restrain prayer before him, but continued to cry unto him, and determined to do so; and as the people of God are sometimes forced to flee to distant parts, they have a God still to go to, who is a God afar off, as well as at hand. It may be the psalmist may represent the church in Gospel times, throughout the whole world, even at the further parts of it, in the isles afar off, where men may and do lift up holy hands to God without wrath and doubting:
when my heart is overwhelmed;
or "covered" F24; with grief and sorrow for any trouble, outward or inward, and ready to sink, and fail and die. Sometimes the saints are overwhelmed with a sense of sin, are pressed down with the weight and burden of its guilt; their faces are covered with shame and confusion; and their hearts are swallowed up and overwhelmed with overmuch sorrow, both at the number of their sins, and at the aggravated circumstances of them; and especially when they are without a view of pardoning grace and mercy, ( Psalms 38:4 Psalms 38:10 ) ( 51:12 ) ( Lamentations 3:42 Lamentations 3:43 ) ; and sometimes they are overwhelmed with afflictive providences; the Lord causes all his waves and billows to go over them, and they are just ready to sink; and did he not stay his hand, and stop contending with them, the spirit would fail before him, and the souls that he has made, ( Psalms 42:6 Psalms 42:7 ) ( Isaiah 57:16 ) ; and sometimes with divine desertions, which cause a "deliquium" of soul, and throw them into fainting fits, ( Song of Solomon 5:6 ) ; and sometimes through unbelieving frames; and did not the Lord appear to them, and strengthen their faith, and remove their unbelief, they would sink and die away, ( Psalms 77:2 Psalms 77:3 Psalms 77:7-9 ) ( 27:13 ) . And at all such times it is right to cry unto the Lord, and make the following request to him:
lead me to the rock [that] is higher than I;
not the land of Israel, as Kimchi thinks, the psalmist being now in the low lands of the Philistines; nor Jerusalem, and the fort and hill of Zion; he being now at the extreme and lower parts of the land: this sense is too low. Some think that some great difficulty is meant; which seemed insuperable, and like a rock inaccessible, which he could not get up to, and upon, and get over; and therefore desires the Lord would lead him up it, and over it, before whom every rock, mountain, and hill, becomes a plain, ( Zechariah 4:7 ) ; but rather Christ is meant, the Rock of Israel, the Rock of our salvation, and our refuge. He is higher than David, and all the kings of the earth; higher than the angels in heaven, and than the heavens themselves, ( Hebrews 7:26 ) ; and who by his height is able to protect and defend his people from all their enemies; and by the shade he casts to refresh and comfort them; and by the sufficiency in him to supply all their wants; for he is as a rock impregnable, and well stored, ( Isaiah 33:16 ) ( 32:9 ) . And here gracious souls desire to be led by the Spirit of God always, and especially when in distressing circumstances; and he does lead them to his blood for pardon and cleansing, and to his righteousness for justification and acceptance with God, and to his fulness for fresh supplies.
F24 (Pjeb) "quum tegitur", Michaelis.