Psalms 107

Listen to Psalms 107
1 1Oh give thanks to the LORD, 2for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!
2 Let 3the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he has 4redeemed from trouble[a]
3 and 5gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south.
4 Some 6wandered in desert wastes, finding no way 7to a city to dwell in;
5 hungry and thirsty, their soul 8fainted within them.
6 Then they 9cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
7 He led them by 10a straight way till they reached 11a city to dwell in.
8 12Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
9 For he 13satisfies the longing soul, 14and the hungry soul he fills with good things.
10 15Some sat in darkness and in 16the shadow of death, prisoners in 17affliction and in irons,
11 for they 18had rebelled against the words of God, and 19spurned the counsel of the Most High.
12 So he bowed their hearts down with hard labor; they fell down, 20with none to help.
13 21Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
14 He brought them out of 22darkness and the shadow of death, and 23burst their bonds apart.
15 24Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
16 For he 25shatters the doors of bronze and cuts in two the bars of iron.
17 Some were 26fools through their sinful ways, and because of their iniquities suffered affliction;
18 27they loathed any kind of food, and they 28drew near to 29the gates of death.
19 30Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
20 He 31sent out his word and 32healed them, and 33delivered them from their destruction.
21 34Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
22 And let them 35offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, and 36tell of his deeds in 37songs of joy!
23 Some 38went down to the sea in ships, doing business on the great waters;
24 they saw the deeds of the LORD, his wondrous works in the deep.
25 For he 39commanded and 40raised 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 41melted away in their evil plight;
27 they reeled and 42staggered like drunken men and 43were at their wits' end.[b]
28 44Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
29 He 45made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed.
30 Then they were glad that the waters[c] were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven.
31 46Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
32 Let them 47extol him in 48the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders.
33 He 49turns rivers into a desert, springs of water into thirsty ground,
34 50a fruitful land into a salty waste, because of the evil of its inhabitants.
35 He 51turns a desert into pools of water, 52a parched land into springs of water.
36 And there he lets the hungry dwell, and they establish 53a city to live in;
37 they sow fields and plant vineyards and get a fruitful yield.
38 54By his blessing they multiply greatly, and he does not let their livestock diminish.
39 When they are diminished and brought low through oppression, evil, and sorrow,
40 55he pours contempt on princes and 56makes them wander 57in trackless wastes;
41 but 58he raises up the needy out of affliction and 59makes their families like flocks.
42 60The upright see it and are glad, and 61all wickedness shuts its mouth.
43 62Whoever is wise, let him attend to these things; let them consider the steadfast love of the LORD.

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Psalms 107 Commentary

Chapter 107

God's providential care of the children of men in distresses, in banishment, and dispersion. (1-9) In captivity. (10-16) In sickness. (17-22) Danger at sea.(23-32) God's hand is to be seen by his own people. (33-43)

Verses 1-9 In these verses there is reference to the deliverance from Egypt, and perhaps that from Babylon: but the circumstances of travellers in those countries are also noted. It is scarcely possible to conceive the horrors suffered by the hapless traveller, when crossing the trackless sands, exposed to the burning rays of the sum. The words describe their case whom the Lord has redeemed from the bondage of Satan; who pass through the world as a dangerous and dreary wilderness, often ready to faint through troubles, fears, and temptations. Those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, after God, and communion with him, shall be filled with the goodness of his house, both in grace and glory.

Verses 10-16 This description of prisoners and captives intimates that they are desolate and sorrowful. In the eastern prisons the captives were and are treated with much severity. Afflicting providences must be improved as humbling providences; and we lose the benefit, if our hearts are unhumbled and unbroken under them. This is a shadow of the sinner's deliverance from a far worse confinement. The awakened sinner discovers his guilt and misery. Having struggled in vain for deliverance, he finds there is no help for him but in the mercy and grace of God. His sin is forgiven by a merciful God, and his pardon is accompanied by deliverance from the power of sin and Satan, and by the sanctifying and comforting influences of God the Holy Spirit.

Verses 17-22 If we knew no sin, we should know no sickness. Sinners are fools. They hurt their bodily health by intemperance, and endanger their lives by indulging their appetites. This their way is their folly. The weakness of the body is the effect of sickness. It is by the power and mercy of God that we are recovered from sickness, and it is our duty to be thankful. All Christ's miraculous cures were emblems of his healing diseases of the soul. It is also to be applied to the spiritual cures which the Spirit of grace works. He sends his word, and heals souls; convinces, converts them, makes them holy, and all by the word. Even in common cases of recovery from sickness, God in his providence speaks, and it is done; by his word and Spirit the soul is restored to health and holiness.

Verses 23-32 Let those who go to sea, consider and adore the Lord. Mariners have their business upon the tempestuous ocean, and there witness deliverances of which others cannot form an idea. How seasonable it is at such a time to pray! This may remind us of the terrors and distress of conscience many experience, and of those deep scenes of trouble which many pass through, in their Christian course. Yet, in answer to their cries, the Lord turns their storm into a calm, and causes their trials to end in gladness.

Verses 33-43 What surprising changes are often made in the affairs of men! Let the present desolate state of Judea, and of other countries, explain this. If we look abroad in the world, we see many greatly increase, whose beginning was small. We see many who have thus suddenly risen, as suddenly brought to nothing. Worldly wealth is uncertain; often those who are filled with it, ere they are aware, lose it again. God has many ways of making men poor. The righteous shall rejoice. It shall fully convince all those who deny the Divine Providence. When sinners see how justly God takes away the gifts they have abused, they will not have a word to say. It is of great use to us to be fully assured of God's goodness, and duly affected with it. It is our wisdom to mind our duty, and to refer our comfort to him. A truly wise person will treasure in his heart this delightful psalm. From it, he will fully understand the weakness and wretchedness of man, and the power and loving-kindness of God, not for our merit, but for his mercy's sake.

Cross References 62

  • 1. See Psalms 105:1
  • 2. See Psalms 100:5
  • 3. Psalms 106:10
  • 4. Isaiah 62:12; Isaiah 63:4
  • 5. Psalms 106:47; Deuteronomy 30:3; Isaiah 11:12; Isaiah 43:5; Isaiah 56:8; Jeremiah 29:14; Jeremiah 31:8, 10; Ezekiel 20:34, 41; Ezekiel 39:27
  • 6. ver. 40; [Deuteronomy 32:10]
  • 7. ver. 36
  • 8. Psalms 77:3
  • 9. ver. 13, 19, 28; Psalms 106:44
  • 10. Ezra 8:21
  • 11. [See ver. 4 above]
  • 12. ver. 15, 21, 31
  • 13. [Psalms 34:10; Psalms 146:7]
  • 14. Luke 1:53
  • 15. Luke 1:79; [Isaiah 42:7; Isaiah 49:9; Micah 7:8]
  • 16. ver. 14; Job 10:21
  • 17. [Job 36:8]
  • 18. Ps. 106:7, 33, 43; See Psalms 78:40
  • 19. Proverbs 1:30; Proverbs 5:12; Proverbs 15:5; [Deuteronomy 31:20; Luke 7:30]
  • 20. See Psalms 22:11
  • 21. ver. 6, 19, 28
  • 22. See ver. 10
  • 23. [Psalms 2:3]
  • 24. ver. 8, 21, 31
  • 25. Isaiah 45:2
  • 26. Proverbs 1:7; Proverbs 14:9
  • 27. Job 33:20
  • 28. Psalms 88:3; Job 33:22
  • 29. See Job 38:17
  • 30. ver. 6, 13, 28
  • 31. Psalms 147:15, 18; [Matthew 8:8]
  • 32. Psalms 30:2, 3; 2 Kings 20:5; Job 33:29, 30
  • 33. Psalms 103:4
  • 34. ver. 8, 15, 31
  • 35. See Psalms 50:14
  • 36. Psalms 9:11; See Psalms 118:17
  • 37. Psalms 105:43
  • 38. Isaiah 42:10
  • 39. Psalms 105:31, 34
  • 40. Psalms 148:8; Jonah 1:4
  • 41. Psalms 119:28; See Psalms 22:14
  • 42. Isaiah 24:20; Isaiah 29:9; See Job 12:25
  • 43. Isaiah 19:3
  • 44. ver. 6, 13, 19
  • 45. See Psalms 65:7
  • 46. ver. 8, 15, 21
  • 47. See Psalms 99:5
  • 48. Psalms 22:22, 25
  • 49. Isaiah 50:2; [Isaiah 42:15]
  • 50. [Genesis 13:10; Genesis 14:3; Deuteronomy 29:23]; See Genesis 19:24-28
  • 51. Psalms 114:8; Isaiah 41:18; [Isaiah 35:6, 7; Isaiah 43:19, 20]
  • 52. Job 38:26, 27
  • 53. ver. 4, 7
  • 54. Genesis 12:2; Genesis 17:20; Exodus 1:7
  • 55. Job 12:21
  • 56. Job 12:24
  • 57. [Deuteronomy 32:10]
  • 58. Psalms 113:7, 8; 1 Samuel 2:8
  • 59. Job 21:11
  • 60. See Job 22:19
  • 61. See Psalms 63:11
  • 62. [Psalms 64:9; Jeremiah 9:12; Hosea 14:9]

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. Or from the hand of the foe
  • [b]. Hebrew and all their wisdom was swallowed up
  • [c]. Hebrew they

Chapter Summary


This psalm, from its style, and from its connection with the preceding psalms, seems to have been written by David. The two foregoing psalms respect the children of Israel; this is generally thought to concern all mankind, and its view to assert a general providence which attends all, in whatsoever condition and circumstance; and to encourage men in their distresses to cry unto the Lord. According to Kimchi, Aben Ezra, and others, four sorts of persons are mentioned, travellers through a wilderness, prisoners, sick persons, and such who use the seas; to which some add a fifth, husbandmen; these are instanced in, not to the exclusion of others, but from them it may be concluded that whatsoever state or condition persons may be in, they are known and taken notice of by the Lord, and are relieved by him when they call upon him. Some restrain the whole to the Israelites, as the Targum, R. Obadiah, Arama, and others, where they make any application; and others apply the psalm to New Testament times; and indeed, though the literal sense should be attended unto and preserved, yet it seems to be applicable to spiritual persons and things. The title of it in the Syriac version is pretty remarkable,

``it is said concerning Joab and Abiah the sons of Samuel, who recited the commandments of the Lord. God gathered the Jews out of captivity, and brought them out from Babylon. Also the only begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ, gathered the Gentiles from the four corners of the world, by preaching to baptism.''

Psalms 107 Commentaries

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.