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Psalms 4

Evening Prayer of Trust in God.

1 1Answer me when 2I call, O God of my righteousness! You have 3relieved me in my distress; Be 4gracious to me and 5hear my prayer.
2 O sons of men, how long will 6my honor become 7a reproach? How long will you love 8what is worthless and aim at 9deception? Selah.
3 But know that the LORD has 10set apart the 11godly man for Himself; The LORD 12hears when I call to Him.
4 13Tremble, 14and do not sin; 15Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still. Selah.
5 Offer the 16sacrifices of righteousness, And 17trust in the LORD.
6 Many are saying, "18Who will show us any good?" 19Lift up the light of Your countenance upon us, O LORD!
7 You have put 20gladness in my heart, More than when their grain and new wine abound.
8 In peace I will both 21lie down and sleep, For You alone, O LORD, make me to 22dwell in safety.

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Psalms 4 Commentary

Chapter 4

The children of men proved, and the happiness of godly people. (1-5) God's favour is happiness. (6-8)

Verses 1-5 Hear me for thy mercy-sake, is our best plea. He who will not ask such blessings as pardon, and justifying righteousness, and eternal life, must perish for the want of them. Alas! that so many should make so fearful a choice. The psalmist warns against sin. Keep up holy reverence of the glory and majesty of God. You have a great deal to say to your hearts, they may be spoken with, let it not be unsaid. Examine them by serious self-reflection; let your thoughts fasten upon that which is good, and keep close to it. Consider your ways, and before you turn to sleep at night, examine your consciences with respect to what you have done in the day; particularly what you have done amiss, that you may repent of it. when you awake in the night, meditate upon God, and the things that belong to your peace. Upon a sick-bed, particularly, we should consider our ways. Be still. when you have asked conscience a question, be serious, be silent, wait for an answer. Open not the mouth to excuse sin. All confidence must be pan answer. Open not the mouth to excuse sin. All confidence only: therefore, after commanding the sacrifices of righteousness, the psalmist says, Put your trust in the Lord.

Verses 6-8 Wordly people inquire for good, not for the chief good; all they want is outward good, present good, partial good, good meat, good drink, a good trade, and a good estate; but what are all these worth? Any good will serve the turn of most men, but a gracious soul will not be put off so. Lord, let us have thy favour, and let us know that we have it, we desire no more; let us be satisfied of thy loving-kindness, and will be satisfied with it. Many inquire after happiness, but David had found it. When God puts grace in the heart, he puts gladness in the heart. Thus comforted, he pitied, but neither envied nor feared the most prosperous sinner. He commits all his affairs to God, and is prepared to welcome his holy will. But salvation is in Christ alone; where will those appear who despise him as their Mediator, and revile him in his disciples? May they stand in awe, and no longer sin against the only remedy.

Cross References 22

  • 1. Psalms 3:4; Psalms 17:6
  • 2. Psalms 18:6
  • 3. Psalms 18:18, 19
  • 4. Psalms 25:16
  • 5. Psalms 17:6; Psalms 39:12
  • 6. Psalms 3:3
  • 7. Ps 69:7-10, 19, 20
  • 8. Psalms 12:2; Psalms 31:6
  • 9. Psalms 31:18
  • 10. Psalms 135:4
  • 11. Psalms 31:23; Psalms 50:5; Psalms 79:2
  • 12. Psalms 6:8, 9; Psalms 17:6
  • 13. Psalms 99:1
  • 14. Psalms 119:11; Ephesians 4:26
  • 15. Psalms 77:6
  • 16. Deuteronomy 33:19; Psalms 51:19
  • 17. Psalms 37:3, 5; Psalms 62:8
  • 18. Job 7:7; Job 9:25
  • 19. Numbers 6:26; Ps 80:3, 7, 19
  • 20. Psalms 97:11, 12; Isaiah 9:3; Acts 14:17
  • 21. Job 11:19; Psalms 3:5
  • 22. Leviticus 25:18; Deuteronomy 12:10; Psalms 16:9

Footnotes 10

  • [a]. I.e. who maintains my right
  • [b]. Lit "made room for"
  • [c]. Or "glory"
  • [d]. "Selah" may mean: "Pause, Crescendo" or "Musical interlude"
  • [e]. Another reading is "dealt wonderfully with"
  • [f]. I.e. with anger or fear
  • [g]. Or "but"
  • [h]. Lit "Speak"
  • [i]. Or "righteous sacrifices"
  • [j]. Or "at the same time"

Chapter Summary

Psalms 4 Commentaries