Psalms 107



Psalms 107–150

1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
2 Let the redeemed of the LORD tell their story— those he redeemed from the hand of the foe,
3 those he gathered from the lands, from east and west, from north and south.[a]
4 Some wandered in desert wastelands, finding no way to a city where they could settle.
5 They were hungry and thirsty, and their lives ebbed away.
6 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress.
7 He led them by a straight way to a city where they could settle.
8 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind,
9 for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
10 Some sat in darkness, in utter darkness, prisoners suffering in iron chains,
11 because they rebelled against God’s commands and despised the plans of the Most High.
12 So he subjected them to bitter labor; they stumbled, and there was no one to help.
13 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
14 He brought them out of darkness, the utter darkness, and broke away their chains.
15 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind,
16 for he breaks down gates of bronze and cuts through bars of iron.
17 Some became fools through their rebellious ways and suffered affliction because of their iniquities.
18 They loathed all food and drew near the gates of death.
19 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
20 He sent out his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.
21 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.
22 Let them sacrifice thank offerings and tell of his works with songs of joy.
23 Some went out on the sea in ships; they were merchants on the mighty waters.
24 They saw the works of the LORD, his wonderful deeds in the deep.
25 For he spoke and stirred up a tempest that lifted high the waves.
26 They mounted up to the heavens and went down to the depths; in their peril their courage melted away.
27 They reeled and staggered like drunkards; they were at their wits’ end.
28 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress.
29 He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea[b] were hushed.
30 They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven.
31 Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.
32 Let them exalt him in the assembly of the people and praise him in the council of the elders.
33 He turned rivers into a desert, flowing springs into thirsty ground,
34 and fruitful land into a salt waste, because of the wickedness of those who lived there.
35 He turned the desert into pools of water and the parched ground into flowing springs;
36 there he brought the hungry to live, and they founded a city where they could settle.
37 They sowed fields and planted vineyards that yielded a fruitful harvest;
38 he blessed them, and their numbers greatly increased, and he did not let their herds diminish.
39 Then their numbers decreased, and they were humbled by oppression, calamity and sorrow;
40 he who pours contempt on nobles made them wander in a trackless waste.
41 But he lifted the needy out of their affliction and increased their families like flocks.
42 The upright see and rejoice, but all the wicked shut their mouths.
43 Let the one who is wise heed these things and ponder the loving deeds of the LORD.

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Psalms 107 Commentary

Chapter 107

God's providential care of the children of men in distresses, in banishment, and dispersion. (1-9) In captivity. (10-16) In sickness. (17-22) Danger at sea.(23-32) God's hand is to be seen by his own people. (33-43)

Verses 1-9 In these verses there is reference to the deliverance from Egypt, and perhaps that from Babylon: but the circumstances of travellers in those countries are also noted. It is scarcely possible to conceive the horrors suffered by the hapless traveller, when crossing the trackless sands, exposed to the burning rays of the sum. The words describe their case whom the Lord has redeemed from the bondage of Satan; who pass through the world as a dangerous and dreary wilderness, often ready to faint through troubles, fears, and temptations. Those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, after God, and communion with him, shall be filled with the goodness of his house, both in grace and glory.

Verses 10-16 This description of prisoners and captives intimates that they are desolate and sorrowful. In the eastern prisons the captives were and are treated with much severity. Afflicting providences must be improved as humbling providences; and we lose the benefit, if our hearts are unhumbled and unbroken under them. This is a shadow of the sinner's deliverance from a far worse confinement. The awakened sinner discovers his guilt and misery. Having struggled in vain for deliverance, he finds there is no help for him but in the mercy and grace of God. His sin is forgiven by a merciful God, and his pardon is accompanied by deliverance from the power of sin and Satan, and by the sanctifying and comforting influences of God the Holy Spirit.

Verses 17-22 If we knew no sin, we should know no sickness. Sinners are fools. They hurt their bodily health by intemperance, and endanger their lives by indulging their appetites. This their way is their folly. The weakness of the body is the effect of sickness. It is by the power and mercy of God that we are recovered from sickness, and it is our duty to be thankful. All Christ's miraculous cures were emblems of his healing diseases of the soul. It is also to be applied to the spiritual cures which the Spirit of grace works. He sends his word, and heals souls; convinces, converts them, makes them holy, and all by the word. Even in common cases of recovery from sickness, God in his providence speaks, and it is done; by his word and Spirit the soul is restored to health and holiness.

Verses 23-32 Let those who go to sea, consider and adore the Lord. Mariners have their business upon the tempestuous ocean, and there witness deliverances of which others cannot form an idea. How seasonable it is at such a time to pray! This may remind us of the terrors and distress of conscience many experience, and of those deep scenes of trouble which many pass through, in their Christian course. Yet, in answer to their cries, the Lord turns their storm into a calm, and causes their trials to end in gladness.

Verses 33-43 What surprising changes are often made in the affairs of men! Let the present desolate state of Judea, and of other countries, explain this. If we look abroad in the world, we see many greatly increase, whose beginning was small. We see many who have thus suddenly risen, as suddenly brought to nothing. Worldly wealth is uncertain; often those who are filled with it, ere they are aware, lose it again. God has many ways of making men poor. The righteous shall rejoice. It shall fully convince all those who deny the Divine Providence. When sinners see how justly God takes away the gifts they have abused, they will not have a word to say. It is of great use to us to be fully assured of God's goodness, and duly affected with it. It is our wisdom to mind our duty, and to refer our comfort to him. A truly wise person will treasure in his heart this delightful psalm. From it, he will fully understand the weakness and wretchedness of man, and the power and loving-kindness of God, not for our merit, but for his mercy's sake.

Cross References 85

  • 1. S 1 Chronicles 16:8; S 2 Chronicles 5:13; Psalms 106:1
  • 2. S 2 Chronicles 7:3
  • 3. S Psalms 106:10; S Isaiah 35:9
  • 4. S Nehemiah 1:9; Psalms 106:47; Isaiah 43:5-6
  • 5. Numbers 14:33; Numbers 32:13; S Joshua 5:6
  • 6. ver 36
  • 7. Exodus 16:3
  • 8. S Exodus 15:22; S Exodus 17:2
  • 9. S Exodus 14:10; Psalms 50:15
  • 10. S Ezra 8:21
  • 11. ver 36
  • 12. Psalms 105:1
  • 13. Psalms 6:4
  • 14. S Psalms 75:1
  • 15. Psalms 22:26; Psalms 63:5; Isaiah 58:11; Matthew 5:6; Luke 1:53
  • 16. S Psalms 23:1; Jeremiah 31:25; Psalms 34:10
  • 17. ver 14; Psalms 88:6; Psalms 143:3; Isaiah 9:2; Isaiah 42:7,16; Isaiah 49:9; Micah 7:9; Luke 1:79
  • 18. Psalms 102:20; Isaiah 61:1
  • 19. S Job 36:8
  • 20. S Psalms 5:10; Psalms 106:7; Lamentations 3:42
  • 21. S Numbers 14:11
  • 22. S 1 Kings 22:5; 2 Chronicles 36:16
  • 23. S 2 Kings 14:26; Psalms 72:12; Psalms 22:11
  • 24. S Psalms 106:8
  • 25. S ver 10; Isaiah 9:2; Isaiah 42:7; Isaiah 50:10; Isaiah 59:9; Isaiah 60:2; S Luke 1:79
  • 26. Psalms 86:13; Isaiah 29:18
  • 27. S Job 36:8; Psalms 116:16; Luke 13:16; Acts 12:7
  • 28. ver 8,21,31; Psalms 105:1
  • 29. Psalms 6:4
  • 30. S Psalms 75:1
  • 31. S Psalms 53:1
  • 32. S Psalms 25:7
  • 33. S Leviticus 26:16; Isaiah 65:6-7; Jeremiah 30:14-15; Galatians 6:7-8; Lamentations 3:39
  • 34. S Job 3:24; S Job 6:6; Job 33:20
  • 35. S Job 17:16; S Job 33:22; Psalms 9:13; Psalms 88:3
  • 36. ver 28; Psalms 5:2
  • 37. ver 13; Psalms 34:4
  • 38. S Deuteronomy 32:2; Psalms 147:15; Matthew 8:8; Luke 7:7
  • 39. S Exodus 15:26; Psalms 103:3
  • 40. S Job 33:28
  • 41. Psalms 16:10; Psalms 30:3; Psalms 49:15; S Psalms 56:13
  • 42. S ver 15
  • 43. Psalms 6:4
  • 44. Psalms 75:1
  • 45. S Leviticus 7:12; Psalms 50:14; Psalms 116:17
  • 46. Psalms 9:11; Psalms 73:28; Psalms 118:17
  • 47. S Job 8:21; S Psalms 65:8
  • 48. Isaiah 42:10
  • 49. S Psalms 104:26
  • 50. Psalms 64:9; Psalms 111:2; Psalms 143:5
  • 51. S Psalms 105:31
  • 52. S Psalms 50:3; John 1:4
  • 53. S Psalms 93:3
  • 54. Luke 8:23
  • 55. S Joshua 2:11; Psalms 22:14
  • 56. Isaiah 19:14; Isaiah 24:20; Isaiah 28:7
  • 57. S ver 19
  • 58. Psalms 4:1; John 1:6
  • 59. Matthew 8:26; Luke 8:24
  • 60. Psalms 89:9; S Psalms 93:3
  • 61. S Psalms 65:7; John 1:15
  • 62. ver 7
  • 63. S ver 15
  • 64. Psalms 6:4
  • 65. Psalms 75:1; Psalms 106:2
  • 66. Psalms 30:1; Psalms 34:3; Psalms 99:5
  • 67. S Psalms 1:5; Psalms 22:22,25; Psalms 26:12; Psalms 35:18
  • 68. 1 Kings 17:1; Psalms 74:15; Isaiah 41:15; Isaiah 42:15; Isaiah 50:2
  • 69. S Psalms 104:10
  • 70. S Genesis 13:10; Genesis 14:3; Genesis 19:25
  • 71. S 2 Kings 3:17; Psalms 105:41; Psalms 126:4; Isaiah 43:19; Isaiah 51:3; Psalms 114:8; Isaiah 41:18
  • 72. S Job 38:26; S Isaiah 35:7
  • 73. S 2 Kings 19:29; S Isaiah 37:30; Isaiah 65:21
  • 74. S Genesis 12:2; Genesis 17:16,20; Exodus 1:7; S Deuteronomy 7:13
  • 75. S Genesis 49:25
  • 76. S 2 Kings 10:32; Ezekiel 5:12
  • 77. S Psalms 44:9
  • 78. S Job 12:18; Job 12:21
  • 79. S Deuteronomy 32:10; Job 12:24
  • 80. S 1 Samuel 2:8; Psalms 113:7-9
  • 81. S Job 21:11
  • 82. S Job 22:19; Psalms 97:10-12
  • 83. S Job 5:16; Psalms 63:11; Romans 3:19
  • 84. Jeremiah 9:12; Hosea 14:9
  • 85. Psalms 103:11; Psalms 64:9

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. Hebrew "north and the sea"
  • [b]. Dead Sea Scrolls; Masoretic Text "/ their waves"

Chapter Summary


This psalm, from its style, and from its connection with the preceding psalms, seems to have been written by David. The two foregoing psalms respect the children of Israel; this is generally thought to concern all mankind, and its view to assert a general providence which attends all, in whatsoever condition and circumstance; and to encourage men in their distresses to cry unto the Lord. According to Kimchi, Aben Ezra, and others, four sorts of persons are mentioned, travellers through a wilderness, prisoners, sick persons, and such who use the seas; to which some add a fifth, husbandmen; these are instanced in, not to the exclusion of others, but from them it may be concluded that whatsoever state or condition persons may be in, they are known and taken notice of by the Lord, and are relieved by him when they call upon him. Some restrain the whole to the Israelites, as the Targum, R. Obadiah, Arama, and others, where they make any application; and others apply the psalm to New Testament times; and indeed, though the literal sense should be attended unto and preserved, yet it seems to be applicable to spiritual persons and things. The title of it in the Syriac version is pretty remarkable,

``it is said concerning Joab and Abiah the sons of Samuel, who recited the commandments of the Lord. God gathered the Jews out of captivity, and brought them out from Babylon. Also the only begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ, gathered the Gentiles from the four corners of the world, by preaching to baptism.''

Psalms 107 Commentaries