David complains of his enemies. (1-5) He prophesies their destruction. (6-20) Prayers and praises. (21-31)
1-5. It is the unspeakable comfort of all believers, that whoever is against them, God is for them; and to him they may apply as to one pleased to concern himself for them. David's enemies laughed at him for his devotion, but they could not laugh him out of it.
Verses 6-20 The Lord Jesus may speak here as a Judge, denouncing sentence on some of his enemies, to warn others. When men reject the salvation of Christ, even their prayers are numbered among their sins. See what hurries some to shameful deaths, and brings the families and estates of others to ruin; makes them and theirs despicable and hateful, and brings poverty, shame, and misery upon their posterity: it is sin, that mischievous, destructive thing. And what will be the effect of the sentence, "Go, ye cursed," upon the bodies and souls of the wicked! How it will affect the senses of the body, and the powers of the soul, with pain, anguish, horror, and despair! Think on these things, sinners, tremble and repent.
Verses 21-31 The psalmist takes God's comforts to himself, but in a very humble manner. He was troubled in mind. His body was wasted, and almost worn away. But it is better to have leanness in the body, while the soul prospers and is in health, than to have leanness in the soul, while the body is feasted. He was ridiculed and reproached by his enemies. But if God bless us, we need not care who curses us; for how can they curse whom God has not cursed; nay, whom he has blessed? He pleads God's glory, and the honour of his name. Save me, not according to my merit, for I pretend to none, but according to thy-mercy. He concludes with the joy of faith, in assurance that his present conflicts would end in triumphs. Let all that suffer according to the will of God, commit the keeping of their souls to him. Jesus, unjustly put to death, and now risen again, is an Advocate and Intercessor for his people, ever ready to appear on their behalf against a corrupt world, and the great accuser.
Psalms 109:1-31 . The writer complains of his virulent enemies, on whom he imprecates God's righteous punishment, and to a prayer for a divine interposition in his behalf appends the expression of his confidence and a promise of his praises. This Psalm is remarkable for the number and severity of its imprecations. Its evident typical character (compare Psalms 109:8 ) justifies the explanation of these already given, that as the language of David respecting his own enemies, or those of Christ, it has respect not to the penitent, but to the impenitent and implacable foes of good men, and of God and His cause, whose inevitable fate is thus indicated by inspired authority.
1. God of my praise--its object, thus recognizing God as a certain helper. Be not silent (compare Psalms 17:13 , 28:1 ).
2. For the mouth . . . opened--or, "They have opened a wicked mouth"
against me--literally, "with me," that is, Their intercourse is living, or, they slander me to my face ( Matthew 26:59 ).
3. (Compare Psalms 35:7 , 69:4 ).
4, 5. They return evil for good (compare Psalms 27:12 , Proverbs 17:13 ).
I give myself unto prayer--or literally, "I (am) prayer," or, "as for me, prayer," that is, it is my resource for comfort in distress.
6. over him--one of his enemies prominent in malignity ( Psalms 55:12 ).
let Satan stand--as an accuser, whose place was the right hand of the accused ( Zechariah 3:1 Zechariah 3:2 ).
7. The condemnation is aggravated when prayer for relief is treated as a sin.
8. The opposite blessing is long life ( Psalms 91:16 , Proverbs 3:2 ). The last clause is quoted as to Judas by Peter ( Acts 1:20 ).
office--literally, "charge," Septuagint, and Peter, "oversight" [ 1 Peter 5:2 ].
9, 10. Let his family share the punishment, his children be as wandering beggars to prowl in their desolate homes, a greedy and relentless creditor grasp his substance, his labor, or the fruit of it, enure to strangers and not his heirs, and his unprotected, fatherless children fall in want, so that his posterity shall utterly fail.
13. posterity--literally, "end," as in Psalms 37:38 , or, what comes after; that is, reward, or success, or its expectation, of which posterity was to a Jew a prominent part.
14, 15. Let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered, &c.--Added to the terrible overthrow following his own sin, let there be the imputation of his parents' guilt, that it may now come before God, for His meting out its full consequences, in cutting off the memory of them (that is, the parents) from the earth ( Psalms 34:16 ).
16. Let God remember guilt, because he (the wicked) did not remember mercy.
poor and needy . . . broken in heart--that is, pious sufferer ( Psalms 34:18 , 35:10 , 40:17 ).
17-19. Let his loved sin, cursing, come upon him in punishment ( Psalms 35:8 ), thoroughly fill him as water and oil, permeating to every part of his system (compare Numbers 5:22-27 ), and become a garment and a girdle for a perpetual dress.
20. Let this . . . reward--or, "wages," pay for labor, the fruit of the enemy's wickedness.
from the Lord--as His judicial act.
21, 22. do . . . for me--that is, kindness.
wounded--literally, "pierced" ( Psalms 69:16 Psalms 69:29 ).
23. like the shadow--(Compare Psalms 102:11 ).
tossed up and down--or, "driven" ( Exodus 10:19 ).
24, 25. Taunts and reproaches aggravate his afflicted and feeble state ( Psalms 22:6 Psalms 22:7 ).
26, 27. Let my deliverance glorify Thee (compare Psalms 59:13 ).
28-31. In confidence that God's blessing would come on him, and confusion and shame on his enemies ( Psalms 73:13 ), he ceases to regard their curses, and anticipates a season of joyful and public thanksgiving; for God is near to protect ( Psalms 16:8 , 34:6 ) the poor from all unrighteous judges who may condemn him.