Psalms 33

1 Joyfully sing to the LORD, you righteous people. Praising [the LORD] is proper for decent people.
2 Give thanks with a lyre to the LORD. Make music for him on a ten-stringed harp.
3 Sing a new song to him. Play beautifully and joyfully on stringed instruments.
4 The word of the LORD is correct, and everything he does is trustworthy.
5 The LORD loves righteousness and justice. His mercy fills the earth.
6 The heavens were made by the word of the LORD and all the stars by the breath of his mouth.
7 He gathers the water in the sea like a dam and puts the oceans in his storehouses.
8 Let all the earth fear the LORD. Let all who live in the world stand in awe of him.
9 He spoke, and it came into being. He gave the order, and there it stood.
10 The LORD blocks the plans of the nations. He frustrates the schemes of the people of the world.
11 The LORD's plan stands firm forever. His thoughts stand firm in every generation.
12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD. Blessed are the people he has chosen as his own.
13 The LORD looks down from heaven. He sees all of Adam's descendants.
14 From the place where he sits enthroned, he looks down upon all who live on earth.
15 The one who formed their hearts understands everything they do.
16 No king achieves a victory with a large army. No warrior rescues himself by his own great strength.
17 Horses are not a guarantee for victory. Their great strength cannot help someone escape.
18 The LORD's eyes are on those who fear him, on those who wait with hope for his mercy
19 to rescue their souls from death and keep them alive during a famine.
20 We wait for the LORD. He is our help and our shield.
21 In him our hearts find joy. In his holy name we trust.
22 Let your mercy rest on us, O LORD, since we wait with hope for you.

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Psalms 33 Commentary

Chapter 33

God to be praised. (1-11) His people encouraged by his power. (12-22)

Verses 1-11 Holy joy is the heart and soul of praise, and that is here pressed upon the righteous. Thankful praise is the breath and language of holy joy. Religious songs are proper expressions of thankful praise. Every endowment we possess, should be employed with all our skill and earnestness in God's service. His promises are all wise and good. His word is right, and therefore we are only in the right when we agree with it. His works are all done in truth. He is the righteous Lord, therefore loveth righteousness. What a pity it is that this earth, which is so full of the proofs and instances of God's goodness, should be so empty of his praises; and that of the multitudes who live upon his bounty, there are so few who live to his glory! What the Lord does, he does to purpose; it stands fast. He overrules all the counsels of men, and makes them serve his counsels; even that is fulfilled, which to us is most surprising, the eternal counsel of God, nor can any thing prevent its coming to pass.

Verses 12-22 All the motions and operations of the souls of men, which no mortals know but themselves, God knows better than they do. Their hearts, as well as their times, are all in his hand; he formed the spirit of each man within him. All the powers of the creature depend upon him, and are of no account, of no avail at all, without him. If we make God's favour sure towards us, then we need not fear whatever is against us. We are to give to him the glory of his special grace. All human devices for the salvation of our souls are vain; but the Lord's watchful eye is over those whose conscientious fear of his name proceeds from a believing hope in his mercy. In difficulties they shall be helped; in dangers they shall not receive any real damage. Those that fear God and his wrath, must hope in God and his mercy; for there is no flying from him, but by flying to him. Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us; let us always have the comfort and benefit, not according to our merits, but according to the promise which thou hast in thy word given to us, and according to the faith thou hast by thy Spirit and grace wrought in us.

Chapter Summary


Though this psalm has no title to it, it seems to be a psalm of David, from the style and matter of it; and indeed begins with the same words with which the preceding psalm is ended. Theodoret is of opinion it was written by David as a prophecy concerning Hezekiah, as a song to be sung by the people after the destruction of the Assyrian army.

Psalms 33 Commentaries

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