Psalms 31

1 To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David. In You, O Lord, I put my trust; Let me never be ashamed; Deliver me in Your righteousness.
2 Bow down Your ear to me, Deliver me speedily; Be my rock of refuge, A fortress of defense to save me.
3 For You are my rock and my fortress; Therefore, for Your name's sake, Lead me and guide me.
4 Pull me out of the net which they have secretly laid for me, For You are my strength.
5 Into Your hand I commit my spirit; You have redeemed me, O Lord God of truth.
6 I have hated those who regard useless idols; But I trust in the Lord.
7 I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, For You have considered my trouble; You have known my soul in adversities,
8 And have not shut me up into the hand of the enemy; You have set my feet in a wide place.
9 Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am in trouble; My eye wastes away with grief, Yes, my soul and my body!
10 For my life is spent with grief, And my years with sighing; My strength fails because of my iniquity, And my bones waste away.
11 I am a reproach among all my enemies, But especially among my neighbors, And am repulsive to my acquaintances; Those who see me outside flee from me.
12 I am forgotten like a dead man, out of mind; I am like a broken vessel.
13 For I hear the slander of many; Fear is on every side; While they take counsel together against me, They scheme to take away my life.
14 But as for me, I trust in You, O Lord; I say, "You are my God."
15 My times are in Your hand; Deliver me from the hand of my enemies, And from those who persecute me.
16 Make Your face shine upon Your servant; Save me for Your mercies' sake.
17 Do not let me be ashamed, O Lord, for I have called upon You; Let the wicked be ashamed; Let them be silent in the grave.
18 Let the lying lips be put to silence, Which speak insolent things proudly and contemptuously against the righteous.
19 Oh, how great is Your goodness, Which You have laid up for those who fear You, Which You have prepared for those who trust in You In the presence of the sons of men!
20 You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence From the plots of man; You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion From the strife of tongues.
21 Blessed be the Lord, For He has shown me His marvelous kindness in a strong city!
22 For I said in my haste, "I am cut off from before Your eyes"; Nevertheless You heard the voice of my supplications When I cried out to You.
23 Oh, love the Lord, all you His saints! For the Lord preserves the faithful, And fully repays the proud person.
24 Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart, All you who hope in the Lord.

Psalms 31 Commentary

Chapter 31

Confidence in God. (1-8) Prayer in trouble. (9-18) Praise for God's goodness. (19-24)

Verses 1-8 Faith and prayer must go together, for the prayer of faith is the prevailing prayer. David gave up his soul in a special manner to God. And with the words, ver. 5, our Lord Jesus yielded up his last breath on the cross, and made his soul a free-will offering for sin, laying down his life as a ransom. But David is here as a man in distress and trouble. And his great care is about his soul, his spirit, his better part. Many think that while perplexed about their worldly affairs, and their cares multiply, they may be excused if they neglect their souls; but we are the more concerned to look to our souls, that, though the outward man perish, the inward man may suffer no damage. The redemption of the soul is so precious, that it must have ceased for ever, if Christ had not undertaken it. Having relied on God's mercy, he will be glad and rejoice in it. God looks upon our souls, when we are in trouble, to see whether they are humbled for sin, and made better by the affliction. Every believer will meet with such dangers and deliverances, until he is delivered from death, his last enemy.

Verses 9-18 David's troubles made him a man of sorrows. Herein he was a type of Christ, who was acquainted with grief. David acknowledged that his afflictions were merited by his own sins, but Christ suffered for ours. David's friends durst not give him any assistance. Let us not think it strange if thus deserted, but make sure of a Friend in heaven who will not fail. God will be sure to order and dispose all for the best, to all those who commit their spirits also into his hand. The time of life is in God's hands, to lengthen or shorten, make bitter or sweet, according to the counsel of his will. The way of man is not in himself, nor in our friend's hands, nor in our enemies' hands, but in God's. In this faith and confidence he prays that the Lord would save him for his mercies's sake, and not for any merit of his own. He prophesies the silencing of those that reproach and speak evil of the people of God. There is a day coming, when the Lord will execute judgment upon them. In the mean time, we should engage ourselves by well-doing, if possible, to silence the ignorance of foolish men.

Verses 19-24 Instead of yielding to impatience or despondency under our troubles, we should turn our thoughts to the goodness of the Lord towards those who fear and trust in Him. All comes to sinners through the wondrous gift of the only-begotten Son of God, to be the atonement for their sins. Let not any yield to unbelief, or think, under discouraging circumstances, that they are cut off from before the eyes of the Lord, and left to the pride of men. Lord, pardon our complaints and fears; increase our faith, patience, love, and gratitude; teach us to rejoice in tribulation and in hope. The deliverance of Christ, with the destruction of his enemies, ought to strengthen and comfort the hearts of believers under all their afflictions here below, that having suffered courageously with their Master, they may triumphantly enter into his joy and glory.

Chapter Summary

Psalms 31 Commentaries

Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.