Psalms 91

Listen to Psalms 91
1 He who dwells in 1the shelter of the Most High will abide in 2the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say[a] to the LORD, "My 3refuge and my 4fortress, my God, in whom I 5trust."
3 For he will deliver you from 6the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will 7cover you with his pinions, and under his 8wings you will 9find refuge; his 10faithfulness is 11a shield and buckler.
5 12You will not fear 13the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.
7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you.
8 You will only look with your eyes and 14see the recompense of the wicked.
9 Because you have made the LORD your 15dwelling place-- the Most High, who is my 16refuge[b]--
10 17no evil shall be allowed to befall you, 18no plague come near your tent.
11 19For he will command his 20angels concerning you to 21guard you in all your ways.
12 On their hands they will bear you up, lest you 22strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on 23the lion and the 24adder; the young lion and 25the serpent you will 26trample underfoot.
14 "Because he 27holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he 28knows my name.
15 When he 29calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and 30honor him.
16 With 31long life I will satisfy him and 32show him my salvation."

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Psalms 91 Commentary

Chapter 91

The safety of those who have God for their refuge. (1-8) Their favour with Him. (9-16)

Verses 1-8 He that by faith chooses God for his protector, shall find all in him that he needs or can desire. And those who have found the comfort of making the Lord their refuge, cannot but desire that others may do so. The spiritual life is protected by Divine grace from the temptations of Satan, which are as the snares of the fowler, and from the contagion of sin, which is a noisome pestilence. Great security is promised to believers in the midst of danger. Wisdom shall keep them from being afraid without cause, and faith shall keep them from being unduly afraid. Whatever is done, our heavenly Father's will is done; and we have no reason to fear. God's people shall see, not only God's promises fulfilled, but his threatenings. Then let sinners come unto the Lord upon his mercy-seat, through the Redeemer's name; and encourage others to trust in him also.

Verses 9-16 Whatever happens, nothing shall hurt the believer; though trouble and affliction befal, it shall come, not for his hurt, but for good, though for the present it be not joyous but grievous. Those who rightly know God, will set their love upon him. They by prayer constantly call upon him. His promise is, that he will in due time deliver the believer out of trouble, and in the mean time be with him in trouble. The Lord will manage all his worldly concerns, and preserve his life on earth, so long as it shall be good for him. For encouragement in this he looks unto Jesus. He shall live long enough; till he has done the work he was sent into this world for, and is ready for heaven. Who would wish to live a day longer than God has some work to do, either by him or upon him? A man may die young, yet be satisfied with living. But a wicked man is not satisfied even with long life. At length the believer's conflict ends; he has done for ever with trouble, sin, and temptation.

Cross References 32

  • 1. See Psalms 32:7
  • 2. Psalms 121:5; [Isaiah 25:4; Isaiah 32:2]
  • 3. ver. 9; See Psalms 14:6
  • 4. See Psalms 18:2
  • 5. See Psalms 11:1
  • 6. Psalms 124:7; Psalms 140:5; Psalms 141:9; Proverbs 6:5
  • 7. [1 Kings 8:7]
  • 8. See Psalms 17:8
  • 9. Psalms 57:1
  • 10. See Psalms 36:5
  • 11. See Psalms 35:2
  • 12. Proverbs 3:23; Isaiah 43:1; See Job 5:19-23
  • 13. Song of Songs 3:8
  • 14. See Psalms 37:34
  • 15. See Psalms 71:3
  • 16. [See ver. 2 above]
  • 17. [ver. 5]; See Proverbs 12:21
  • 18. Psalms 38:11
  • 19. Cited Matthew 4:6; Luke 4:10, 11
  • 20. See Psalms 34:7
  • 21. Exodus 23:20
  • 22. Proverbs 3:23; [Psalms 37:24]
  • 23. [Daniel 6:23]
  • 24. [Acts 28:5]
  • 25. See Psalms 74:13
  • 26. Luke 10:19; [Mark 16:18]
  • 27. Deuteronomy 7:7; Deuteronomy 10:15
  • 28. Psalms 9:10
  • 29. Job 12:4; See Psalms 50:15
  • 30. 1 Samuel 2:30; John 12:26
  • 31. Psalms 21:4; Deuteronomy 6:2; 1 Kings 3:14; Proverbs 3:2, 16
  • 32. Psalms 50:23; [Psalms 118:14, 21]

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. Septuagint He will say
  • [b]. Or For you, O Lord, are my refuge! You have made the Most High your dwelling place

Chapter Summary


Jarchi and others think this psalm was written by Moses {m}, as was the preceding; but the Targum ascribes it to David; as do the Septuagint, Vulgate Latin, Syriac, Arabic, and Ethiopic versions; and very probably, as is generally thought, was penned by him on occasion of the pestilence which came upon the people, through his numbering of them, 2Sa 24:1. The person all along spoken of, and to, according to the Targum, is Solomon his son; and, according to the title in the Syriac version, King Hezekiah, so Theodoret, who is called the son of David; neither of which are probable. Some think the Messiah is meant; and that the psalm contains promises of protection and safety to him, as man, from diseases, beasts of prey, evil spirits, and wicked men, under the care of angels; and this not because that Satan has applied one of these promises to him, Mt 4:6, but because they seem better to agree with him than with any other: and one part of the title of the psalm, in the Syriac version, runs thus,

``and spiritually it is called the victory of the Messiah, and of everyone that is perfected by him.''

It seems best to understand it of every godly man, who is always safe under the divine protection. The Talmudisis {n} call it Myegp ryv, "a song of the occursions", or "meetings with evil spirits."

Psalms 91 Commentaries

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