Psalms 42:1-2



Psalms 42–72


For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.

1 [a][b][c]As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?

Psalms 42:1-2 Meaning and Commentary

To the chief Musician, Maschil, for the sons of Korah. Of the word "Maschil," See Gill on "Ps 32:1," title. Korah was he who was at the head of a conspiracy against Moses and Aaron, for which sin the earth opened its mouth, and swallowed alive him and his company, and fire devoured two hundred and fifty more; the history of which is recorded in Numbers 16:1; yet all his posterity were not cut off, Numbers 26:11; some were in David's time porters, or keepers of the gates of the tabernacle, and some were singers; see 1 Chronicles 6:33; and to the chief musician was this psalm directed for them to sing, for they were not the authors of it, as some {b} have thought; but most probably David himself composed it; and it seems to have been written by him, not as representing the captives in Babylon, as Theodoret, but on his own account, when he was persecuted by Saul, and driven out by men from abiding in the Lord's inheritance, and was in a strange land among the Heathen, where he was reproached by them; and everything in this psalm agrees with his state and condition; or rather when he fled from his son Absalom, and was in those parts beyond Jordan, mentioned in this psalm; see 2 Samuel 17:24; so the Syriac inscription, the song which David sung in the time of his persecution, desiring to return to Jerusalem.

{b} So R. Moses in Muis, Gussetius, Ebr. Comment. p. 918, & others.

Cross References 6

  • 1. S Psalms 18:33
  • 2. S Deuteronomy 10:7
  • 3. S Job 19:27; Psalms 119:131; Joel 1:20
  • 4. Psalms 63:1; Psalms 143:6
  • 5. S Joshua 3:10; S 1 Samuel 14:39; S Matthew 16:16; Romans 9:26; Jeremiah 10:10
  • 6. Psalms 43:4; Psalms 84:7

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. In many Hebrew manuscripts Psalms 42 and 43 constitute one psalm.
  • [b]. In Hebrew texts 42:1-11 is numbered 42:2-12.
  • [c]. Title: Probably a literary or musical term
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