Psalms 103:14

14 For he knows our frame;[a] he 1remembers that we are dust.

Psalms 103:14 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 103:14

For he knoweth our frame
The outward frame of their bodies, what brittle ware, what earthen vessels, they be; he being the potter, they the clay, he knows what they are able to bear, and what not; that if he lays his hand too heavy, or strikes too hard, or repeats his strokes too often, they will fall in pieces: he knows the inward frame of their minds, the corruption of their nature, how prone they are to sin; and therefore does not expect perfect services from them: how impotent they are to that which is good; that they can do nothing of themselves; nor think a good thought, nor do a good action; and that their best frames are very uncertain ones; and that, though the spirit may be willing, the flesh is weak. The word used is the same that is rendered "imagination", ( Genesis 6:5 ) ( 8:21 ) , and by which the Jews generally express the depravity and corruption of nature; and so the Targum here paraphrases it,

``for he knows our evil concupiscence, which causes us to sin;''

and to this sense Kimchi.

He remembereth that we are dust
F2; are of the dust originally, and return to it again at death; and into which men soon crumble when he lays his hand upon them; this he considers, see ( Psalms 78:38 Psalms 78:39 ) . The Targum is,

``it is remembered before him, that we are of the dust:''

the Septuagint version makes a petition of it, "remember that we are dust"; and so the Arabic version. And we should remember it ourselves, and be humble before God; and wonder at his grace and goodness to us, ( Genesis 18:27 ) .


FOOTNOTES:

F2 "Pulvis et umbra sumus", Horat. Carmin. l. 4. Ode 7. v. 16.

Psalms 103:14 In-Context

12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
13 As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him.
14 For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust.
15 As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field;
16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more.

Cross References 1

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or knows how we are formed