Psalm 54:3

3 Arrogant foes are attacking me; ruthless people are trying to kill me— people without regard for God.a

Read Psalm 54:3 Using Other Translations

For strangers are risen up against me, and oppressors seek after my soul: they have not set God before them. Selah.
For strangers have risen against me; ruthless men seek my life; they do not set God before themselves. Selah
For strangers are attacking me; violent people are trying to kill me. They care nothing for God. Interlude

What does Psalm 54:3 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Psalms 54:3

For strangers are risen up against me
Meaning such as Doeg the Edomite, or Heathen soldiers, that Saul had hired and took into his army, who were aliens from the commonwealth of Israel; and such as these rose up against David's antitype, the Messiah, ( Psalms 2:1 Psalms 2:2 ) ( Acts 4:27 ) . Or rather the Ziphims, who were of his own nation, yea, of his own tribe, yet used him as barbarously as the very Heathens would have done, or worse; and who, though notwithstanding they were of Israel, might not be Israelites indeed, but strangers to an inward experience of divine and spiritual things: for men may be professors of religion, and yet be strangers to God in Christ, to Christ himself, and the way of salvation by him, and communion with him; to the Spirit of God, and the operations of his grace on the heart; to themselves, their own hearts, and their state and condition by nature; to the Gospel of Christ, and to the people of God; and these are sometimes the most violent persecutors of good and spiritual men;

and oppressors seek after my soul;
or "life" F9, to take it away; as did Saul and his army; who are "the mighty" or "strong ones" F11, as the word here used signifies; see ( 1 Samuel 24:11 ) ; and as the Jewish sanhedrim, Scribes and Pharisees, sought after the soul or life of Christ, to take that away, as they did;

they have not set God before them.
They did not consider themselves as under the omniscient eye of God; they did not set his word before them, as the rule of their conduct, but cast it behind their backs; nor did they regard his providential mercies and layouts as a motive to engage them to obedience to him, but despised them; they had not the fear of God before their eyes, nor in their hearts, nor any concern for his glory; and therefore did the wicked things they did against his servant.

Selah; on this word, (See Gill on Psalms 3:2).


F9 (yvpn) "vitam meam", Junius & Tremellius, Michaelis.
F11 (Myuyre) "fortes", V. L. Pagninus, Musculus, Gejerus; "praepotentes", Vatablus.
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