Verse 3. I am weary of my crying. Not of it, but by it, with it. He had prayed till he sweat great drops of blood, and well might physical weariness intervene.
My throat is dried, parched, and inflamed. Long pleading with awful fervour had scorched his throat as with flames of fire. Few, very few, of his saints follow their Lord in prayer so far as this. We are, it is to be feared, more likely to be hoarse with talking frivolities to men than by pleading with God; yet our sinful nature demands more prayer than his perfect humanity might seem to need. His prayers should shame us into fervour. Our Lord's supplications were salted with fire, they were hot with agony; and hence they weakened his system, and made him "a weary man and full of woes."
Mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. He wanted in his direst distress nothing more than his God; that would be all in all to him. Many of us know what watching and waiting mean; and we know something of the failing eye when hope is long deferred: but in all this Jesus bears the palm; no eyes ever failed as his did or for so deep a cause. No painter can ever depict those eyes; their pencils fail in every feature of his all but fair but all marred countenance, but most of all do they come short when they venture to pourtray those eyes which were fountains of tears. He knew both how to pray and to watch, and he would have us learn the like. There are times when we should pray till the throat is dry, and watch till the eyes grow dim. Only thus can we have fellowship with him in his sufferings. What! can we not watch with him one hour? Does the flesh shrink back? O cruel flesh to be so tender of thyself, and so ungenerous to thy Lord!
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 3. I am weary of my crying. The word [gy means properly, to gape, to gasp, then, to become weary.... but to gasp in his crying, is not so much to grow weary because of the great vehemence thereof, but while the crying lasts, and while he is in the act, to succumb under the burden of his dangerous and shameful calamity. Hermann Venema.
Verse 3. I am weary of my crying. He had cried to God for the ways of man; he had cried to man of the ways of God; he had not ceased, from his first beginning to teach, till he said upon the cross, "I thirst." His eyes had grown dim, and his flesh was faint and weary with his sufferings, through the long passion of his life on earth. He had been waiting in poverty, and insult, and treachery, and scourging, and pain, until he cried, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" From "A Plain Commentary."
Verse 3. I am weary of my crying, etc. David is like the post, who layeth by three horses as breathless; his heart, his throat, his eyes... Objection. But I have neither weeping one way or other, ordinary nor marred. Answer. Looking up to heaven, lifting up of the eyes, goeth for prayer also in God's books. "My prayer unto thee, and will look up," ( Psalms 5:3 ). Mine eyes fail with looking upward ( Psalms 69:3 ). Because, first, prayer is a pouring out of the soul to God, and faith will come out at the eye, in lieu of another door: often affections break out at the window, when the door is closed; as smoke vents at the window, when the chimney refuses passage. Stephen looked up to heaven ( Acts 7:55 .). He sent a post; a greedy, pitiful, and hungry look up to Christ, out at the window, at the nearest passage, to tell that a poor friend was coming up to him. Second, I would wish no more, if I were in hell, but to send up a look to heaven. There be many love looks of the saints, lying up before the throne, in the bosom of Christ. The twinkling of thy eyes in prayer are not lost to Christ; else Stephen's look, David's look, should not be registered so many hundred years in Christ's written Testament. Samuel Rutherford, in "The Trial and Triumph of Faith."
Verse 3. Crying. Meanwhile, we see how the saints, in the vicissitudes of affairs, even when they are innocent, are not insensible and stony; they do not despise the threatening perils; they become anxious, they cry and sigh during their temptations. Musculus.
Verse 3. Mine eyes fail. O pitiable sight! that sight should fail, by which Jesus saw the multitudes and, therefore, ascended the mount to give the precepts of the New Testament; by which, beholding Peter and Andrew, he called them; by which, looking upon the man sitting at the receipt of custom, he called and made him an evangelist; by which, gazing upon the city, he wept over it... With these eyes thou didst look upon Simon, when thou didst say, "Thou art the son of Jonas; thou shalt be called Cephas." With these eyes thou didst gaze upon the woman who was a sinner, to whom thou didst say, "Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace." Turn these eyes upon us, and never turn them away from our continual prayers. Gerhohus.
Verse 3. I wait for my God. The hour is coming when our eyes must fail, and be closed; but, even then, "Let us wait for our God;" in this respect, let us die the death of the righteous person, who died for us; "and let our last end be like this." George Horne.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 2-3. The sinner aware of his position, unable to hope, overwhelmed with fear, finding no comfort in prayer, unvisited with divine consolation. Direct and console him.
- Here is faith in the midst of trouble: My God.
- Hope in the midst of disappointment: Mine eyes
- Prayer in the midst of discouragement: I am weary,
etc.; My throat, etc. Or,
- There is praying beyond prayer: I am weary, etc.
- Hoping beyond hope: Mine eyes, etc. G. R.