Psalms 13

Listen to Psalms 13
1 1How long, O LORD? Will you 2forget me forever? How long will you 3hide your face from me?
2 How long must I take 4counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
3 5Consider and answer me, O LORD my God; 6light up my eyes, lest 7I sleep the sleep of death,
4 8lest my enemy say, "I have prevailed over him," lest my foes rejoice because I am 9shaken.
5 But I have 10trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall 11rejoice in your salvation.
6 I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me.

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Psalms 13 Commentary

Chapter 13

The psalmist complains that God had long withdrawn. He earnestly prays for comfort. He assures himself of an answer of peace.

- God sometimes hides his face, and leaves his own children in the dark concerning their interest in him: and this they lay to heart more than any outward trouble whatever. But anxious cares are heavy burdens with which believers often load themselves more than they need. The bread of sorrows is sometimes the saint's daily bread; our Master himself was a man of sorrows. It is a common temptation, when trouble lasts long, to think that it will last always. Those who have long been without joy, begin to be without hope. We should never allow ourselves to make any complaints but what drive us to our knees. Nothing is more killing to a soul than the want of God's favour; nothing more reviving than the return of it. The sudden, delightful changes in the book of Psalms, are often very remarkable. We pass from depth of despondency to the height of religious confidence and joy. It is thus, ver. 5. All is gloomy dejection in ver. 4; but here the mind of the despondent worshipper rises above all its distressing fears, and throws itself, without reserve, on the mercy and care of its Divine Redeemer. See the power of faith, and how good it is to draw near to God. If we bring our cares and griefs to the throne of grace, and leave them there, we may go away like Hannah, and our countenances will be no more said, ( 1 Samuel. 1:18 ) Finding I have that to trust to, I am comforted, though I have no merit of my own. His faith in God's mercy filled his heart with joy in his salvation; for joy and peace come by believing. He has dealt bountifully with me. By faith he was as confident of salvation, as if it had been completed already. In this way believers pour out their prayers, renouncing all hopes but in the mercy of God through the Saviour's blood: and sometimes suddenly, at others gradually, they will find their burdens removed, and their comforts restored; they then allow that their fears and complaints were unnecessary, and acknowledge that the Lord hath dealt bountifully with them.

Cross References 11

  • 1. Psalms 79:5; Psalms 89:46; [Revelation 6:10]
  • 2. Psalms 10:12; Psalms 44:24; Psalms 74:19, 23; Lamentations 5:20
  • 3. See Job 13:24
  • 4. [Psalms 77:6]
  • 5. Psalms 5:1; Psalms 119:153
  • 6. Psalms 19:8; Ezra 9:8; Proverbs 29:13; Ephesians 1:18; [1 Samuel 14:27]
  • 7. [Jeremiah 51:39]
  • 8. Deuteronomy 32:27
  • 9. See Psalms 10:6
  • 10. See Psalms 11:1
  • 11. See Psalms 9:14

Chapter Summary

Psalms 13 Commentaries

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