Psalms 107:27

27 they reeled and 1staggered like drunken men and 2were at their wits' end.[a]

Psalms 107:27 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 107:27

They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man
Through the agitation of the water, and motion of the ship, not being able to stand upon deck.

And are at their wit's end;
or, "all their wisdom is swallowed up" F14; their wisdom in naval affairs, their art of navigation, their skill in managing ships, all nonplussed and baffled; they know not what method to take to save the vessel and themselves; their knowledge fails them, they are quite confounded and almost distracted. So Apollinarius paraphrases it,

``they forget navigation, and their wise art does not appear;''

so Ovid, describing a storm, uses the same phrase, "deficit ars",

``art fails.''


F14 (elbtt Mtmkx lk) "omnis sapientia eorum absorpta est", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus; so Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

Psalms 107:27 In-Context

25 For he commanded and raised the stormy wind, which lifted up the waves of the sea.
26 They mounted up to heaven; they went down to the depths; their courage melted away in their evil plight;
27 they reeled and staggered like drunken men and were at their wits' end.
28 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
29 He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed.

Cross References 2

  • 1. Isaiah 24:20; Isaiah 29:9; See Job 12:25
  • 2. Isaiah 19:3

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Hebrew and all their wisdom was swallowed up
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.