Psalms 106

1 Praise the LORD.[a]Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
2 Who can proclaim the mighty acts of the LORDor fully declare his praise?
3 Blessed are those who act justly, who always do what is right.
4 Remember me, LORD, when you show favor to your people, come to my aid when you save them,
5 that I may enjoy the prosperity of your chosen ones, that I may share in the joy of your nation and join your inheritance in giving praise.
6 We have sinned, even as our ancestors did; we have done wrong and acted wickedly.
7 When our ancestors were in Egypt, they gave no thought to your miracles; they did not remember your many kindnesses, and they rebelled by the sea, the Red Sea.[b]
8 Yet he saved them for his name’s sake, to make his mighty power known.
9 He rebuked the Red Sea, and it dried up; he led them through the depths as through a desert.
10 He saved them from the hand of the foe; from the hand of the enemy he redeemed them.
11 The waters covered their adversaries; not one of them survived.
12 Then they believed his promises and sang his praise.
13 But they soon forgot what he had done and did not wait for his plan to unfold.
14 In the desert they gave in to their craving; in the wilderness they put God to the test.
15 So he gave them what they asked for, but sent a wasting disease among them.
16 In the camp they grew envious of Moses and of Aaron, who was consecrated to the LORD.
17 The earth opened up and swallowed Dathan; it buried the company of Abiram.
18 Fire blazed among their followers; a flame consumed the wicked.
19 At Horeb they made a calf and worshiped an idol cast from metal.
20 They exchanged their glorious God for an image of a bull, which eats grass.
21 They forgot the God who saved them, who had done great things in Egypt,
22 miracles in the land of Ham and awesome deeds by the Red Sea.
23 So he said he would destroy them— had not Moses, his chosen one, stood in the breach before him to keep his wrath from destroying them.
24 Then they despised the pleasant land; they did not believe his promise.
25 They grumbled in their tents and did not obey the LORD.
26 So he swore to them with uplifted hand that he would make them fall in the wilderness,
27 make their descendants fall among the nations and scatter them throughout the lands.
28 They yoked themselves to the Baal of Peor and ate sacrifices offered to lifeless gods;
29 they aroused the LORD’s anger by their wicked deeds, and a plague broke out among them.
30 But Phinehas stood up and intervened, and the plague was checked.
31 This was credited to him as righteousness for endless generations to come.
32 By the waters of Meribah they angered the LORD, and trouble came to Moses because of them;
33 for they rebelled against the Spirit of God, and rash words came from Moses’ lips.[c]
34 They did not destroy the peoples as the LORD had commanded them,
35 but they mingled with the nations and adopted their customs.
36 They worshiped their idols, which became a snare to them.
37 They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to false gods.
38 They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was desecrated by their blood.
39 They defiled themselves by what they did; by their deeds they prostituted themselves.
40 Therefore the LORD was angry with his people and abhorred his inheritance.
41 He gave them into the hands of the nations, and their foes ruled over them.
42 Their enemies oppressed them and subjected them to their power.
43 Many times he delivered them, but they were bent on rebellion and they wasted away in their sin.
44 Yet he took note of their distress when he heard their cry;
45 for their sake he remembered his covenant and out of his great love he relented.
46 He caused all who held them captive to show them mercy.
47 Save us, LORD our God, and gather us from the nations, that we may give thanks to your holy name and glory in your praise.
48 Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Let all the people say, “Amen!” Praise the LORD.

Psalms 106 Commentary

Chapter 106

The happiness of God's people. (1-5) Israel's sins. (6-12) Their provocations. (13-33) Their rebellions in Canaan. (34-46) Prayer for more complete deliverance. (47,48)

Verses 1-5 None of our sins or sufferings should prevent our ascribing glory and praise to the Lord. The more unworthy we are, the more is his kindness to be admired. And those who depend on the Redeemer's righteousness will endeavour to copy his example, and by word and deed to show forth his praise. God's people have reason to be cheerful people; and need not envy the children of men their pleasure or pride.

Verses 6-12 Here begins a confession of sin; for we must acknowledge that the Lord has done right, and we have done wickedly. We are encouraged to hope that though justly corrected, yet we shall not be utterly forsaken. God's afflicted people own themselves guilty before him. God is distrusted because his favours are not remembered. If he did not save us for his own name's sake, and to the praise of his power and grace, we should all perish.

Verses 13-33 Those that will not wait for God's counsel, shall justly be given up to their own hearts' lusts, to walk in their own counsels. An undue desire, even for lawful things, becomes sinful. God showed his displeasure for this. He filled them with uneasiness of mind, terror of conscience, and self-reproach. Many that fare deliciously every day, and whose bodies are healthful, have leanness in their souls: no love to God, no thankfulness, no appetite for the Bread of life, and then the soul must be lean. Those wretchedly forget themselves, that feast their bodies and starve their souls. Even the true believer will see abundant cause to say, It is of the Lord's mercies that I am not consumed. Often have we set up idols in our hearts, cleaved to some forbidden object; so that if a greater than Moses had not stood to turn away the anger of the Lord, we should have been destroyed. If God dealt severely with Moses for unadvised words, what do those deserve who speak many proud and wicked words? It is just in God to remove those relations that are blessings to us, when we are peevish and provoking to them, and grieve their spirits.

Verses 34-48 The conduct of the Israelites in Canaan, and God's dealings with them, show that the way of sin is down-hill; omissions make way for commissions: when they neglected to destroy the heathen, they learned their works. One sin led to many more, and brought the judgments of God on them. Their sin was, in part, their own punishment. Sinners often see themselves ruined by those who led them into evil. Satan, who is a tempter, will be a tormentor. At length, God showed pity to his people for his covenant's sake. The unchangeableness of God's merciful nature and love to his people, makes him change the course of justice into mercy; and no other change is meant by God's repentance. Our case is awful when the outward church is considered. When nations professing Christianity, are so guilty as we are, no wonder if the Lord brings them low for their sins. Unless there is general and deep repentance, there can be no prospect but of increasing calamities. The psalm concludes with prayer for completing the deliverance of God's people, and praise for the beginning and progress of it. May all the people of the earth, ere long, add their Amen.

Cross References 95

  • 1. S Psalms 22:23; S Psalms 103:2
  • 2. S Psalms 119:68; Psalms 100:5; Psalms 105:1
  • 3. S Ezra 3:11; Psalms 136:1-26; Jeremiah 33:11
  • 4. S Psalms 71:16; Psalms 145:4,12
  • 5. Psalms 112:5; Hosea 12:6
  • 6. Psalms 15:2
  • 7. Psalms 25:6,7; Psalms 119:132
  • 8. S Psalms 77:7
  • 9. S Genesis 50:24
  • 10. S Deuteronomy 30:15; Psalms 1:3
  • 11. S Psalms 105:6
  • 12. Psalms 20:5; Psalms 27:6; Psalms 47:5; Psalms 118:15
  • 13. S Exodus 34:9
  • 14. S 1 Kings 8:47; S Romans 3:9; Daniel 9:5
  • 15. S 2 Chronicles 30:7
  • 16. Nehemiah 1:7
  • 17. S Judges 3:7
  • 18. Psalms 78:11,42
  • 19. Exodus 14:11-12
  • 20. Exodus 14:30; S Psalms 80:3; Psalms 107:13; Isaiah 25:9; Joel 2:32
  • 21. S Exodus 9:16; S Psalms 23:3
  • 22. S Exodus 14:31
  • 23. Psalms 18:15; Isaiah 50:2
  • 24. S Exodus 14:21; Nahum 1:4
  • 25. Psalms 78:13; Isaiah 63:11-14
  • 26. Exodus 14:30; Psalms 107:13
  • 27. S Psalms 78:53
  • 28. Psalms 78:42; Psalms 107:2; Isaiah 35:9; Isaiah 62:12
  • 29. S Exodus 14:28; Exodus 15:5
  • 30. Exodus 15:1-21; S Psalms 105:43
  • 31. S Exodus 15:24
  • 32. S Exodus 16:28; S Numbers 27:21
  • 33. S Psalms 78:40
  • 34. S Psalms 68:7
  • 35. S Exodus 17:2; 1 Corinthians 10:9
  • 36. S Exodus 16:13; Psalms 78:29; Numbers 11:31
  • 37. S Numbers 11:33; Isaiah 10:16
  • 38. Numbers 16:1-3
  • 39. Deuteronomy 11:6
  • 40. S Exodus 15:12
  • 41. S Numbers 16:1
  • 42. S Leviticus 10:2; Numbers 16:35
  • 43. S Exodus 32:4; Acts 7:41
  • 44. Jeremiah 2:11; Romans 1:23
  • 45. Psalms 78:11
  • 46. Deuteronomy 10:21; Psalms 75:1
  • 47. S Psalms 78:51; Psalms 105:27
  • 48. S Exodus 3:20; S Deuteronomy 4:34
  • 49. S Exodus 32:10
  • 50. Exodus 32:11-14; S Numbers 11:2; S Deuteronomy 9:19
  • 51. Numbers 14:30-31
  • 52. S Deuteronomy 8:7; S Jeremiah 3:19; Ezekiel 20:6
  • 53. S Numbers 14:11; Hebrews 3:18-19
  • 54. S Exodus 15:24; Deuteronomy 1:27; 1 Corinthians 10:10; Numbers 14:2
  • 55. S Numbers 14:23; Hebrews 4:3; Ezekiel 20:15; Hebrews 3:11
  • 56. Numbers 14:28-35; S Deuteronomy 2:14; Hebrews 3:17
  • 57. S Leviticus 26:33; Psalms 44:11
  • 58. S Numbers 23:28; Numbers 25:2-3; Hosea 9:10
  • 59. Numbers 25:3
  • 60. S Psalms 64:2; Psalms 141:4
  • 61. S Numbers 16:46; Numbers 25:8
  • 62. S Exodus 6:25
  • 63. Numbers 25:8
  • 64. S Genesis 15:6; S Numbers 25:11-13
  • 65. Psalms 49:11
  • 66. S Exodus 17:7; Numbers 20:2-13; Psalms 81:7
  • 67. S Exodus 23:21; Psalms 107:11
  • 68. S Psalms 51:11; Isaiah 63:10
  • 69. Exodus 17:4-7; Numbers 20:8-12
  • 70. S Joshua 9:15; Judges 1:27-36; Judges 1:21
  • 71. Exodus 23:24; S Deuteronomy 2:34; Deuteronomy 7:16; Deuteronomy 20:17
  • 72. Judges 3:5-6; Ezra 9:1-2
  • 73. S Deuteronomy 7:16; Judges 2:12
  • 74. S Exodus 10:7
  • 75. S Leviticus 18:21; S Deuteronomy 12:31; Ezekiel 16:20-21; 2 Kings 16:3; 2 Kings 17:17
  • 76. S Exodus 22:20; S Deuteronomy 32:17; 1 Corinthians 10:20
  • 77. S Leviticus 18:21; S Deuteronomy 18:10; S 2 Kings 3:27; Numbers 35:33
  • 78. S Genesis 3:17; Leviticus 18:24; Ezekiel 20:18
  • 79. Leviticus 17:7; S Numbers 15:39
  • 80. S Leviticus 26:28; Judges 2:14; Psalms 78:59
  • 81. S Exodus 34:9; S Deuteronomy 9:29
  • 82. S Judges 2:14; Nehemiah 9:27
  • 83. S Judges 4:3
  • 84. S Joshua 10:14; Judges 7:1-25; S Nehemiah 9:28; Psalms 81:13-14
  • 85. S Judges 2:16-19; Judges 6:1-7
  • 86. S Judges 3:9; Judges 10:10
  • 87. S Genesis 9:15; Leviticus 26:42; Psalms 105:8; S Luke 1:72
  • 88. Judges 2:18; S Psalms 17:7; S Psalms 103:11
  • 89. S Exodus 32:14
  • 90. S Exodus 3:21; S 1 Kings 8:50; Ezra 9:9; Jeremiah 42:12
  • 91. S Psalms 28:9
  • 92. Psalms 107:3; Psalms 147:2; Isaiah 11:12; Isaiah 27:13; Isaiah 56:8; Isaiah 66:20; Jeremiah 31:8; Ezekiel 20:34; Micah 4:6
  • 93. Psalms 105:1
  • 94. Psalms 30:4; S Psalms 99:3
  • 95. S Psalms 41:13; S Psalms 72:19

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. Hebrew "Hallelu Yah" ; also in verse 48
  • [b]. Or "the Sea of Reeds" ; also in verses 9 and 22
  • [c]. Or "against his spirit," / "and rash words came from his lips"

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO PSALM 106

This psalm is without the name of its author, as the Syriac interpreter observes. Aben Ezra, on Ps 106:47, says, that one of the wise men of Egypt (perhaps Maimonides) was of opinion that it was written in the time of the judges, when there was no king in Israel; and another, he says, thought it was written in Babylon: but he was of opinion it was wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, or by a prophetic spirit, concerning their present captivity; and so Kimchi. The petition in Ps 106:47, "gather us from among the Heathen", has led most interpreters to conclude that it was written either in the Babylonish captivity, or, as some, in the times of Antiochus: but by comparing it with 1Ch 16:7, it appears that it was written by David, at the time of the bringing up of the ark to Zion; since the first and two last verses of it are there expressly mentioned, in the psalm he gave Asaph to sing on that occasion, Ps 106:34-36, who therein might have respect to the Israelites that had been taken captive by some of their neighbours, as the Philistines, and still retained; though there is no difficulty in supposing that David, under a prophetic spirit, foresaw future captivities, and represents those that were in them. As the preceding psalm treats of the mercies and favours God bestowed upon Israel, this of their sins and provocations amidst those blessings, and of the goodness of God unto them; that notwithstanding he did not destroy them from being a people; for which they had reason to be thankful.

Psalms 106 Commentaries