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This is a song sobbing with sadness form beginning to end. It seems to have no gleam of light or of hope. Commencing with an appeal to Jehovah to hear, it proceeds to describe the terrible sorrows through which the singer is passing. He is whelmed with trouble, and nigh unto death. Moreover he is alone; his acquaintances are put away from him. Death is a terrible outlook, for the singer sees no light in it. Therein God Himself will be unknown, and unable to succour.
Again the song sings in yet profounder notes of sadness, which are like the breaking of great waves over the soul; which seem as though they must silence it utterly. The last declaration is a most terrible one of utter loneliness, “lover and friend” are put away from him, and the final word is “darkness.” One cannot help the consciousness that this psalm was a foreshadowing of realisation in the Messiah. The not of present value however, is that while, as we said at the beginning, there seems to be no light, there is light everywhere. The singer is in great sorrow, but he comes to Jehovah. He is afraid of going into death because there Jehovah cannot help him; but he has come there, and therefore still cries out for God. While the sense of God abides, darkness has not triumphed.
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Morgan, G. Campbell. "Commentary on Psalms 88". "Morgan's Exposition on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Sixth Week after Easter