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Bible Commentaries

Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible

Psalms 141

Verses 1-10

Psalms 141:1. LORD, I cry unto thee: make haste unto me; give ear unto my voice, when I cry unto thee.

You see how a child of God prays when he is in trouble. David says, “I cry unto thee,” and then the second time, “I cry unto thee.” And he cried for God as well as to him: “Make haste unto me.” The very best thing you can do, when you cannot help yourself, is to cry unto God, for he will help you.

Psalms 141:2. Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

David was probably far away from the tabernacle, and he could not join in presenting the morning or the evening sacrifice there; but he prayed God to let his prayer be such a sacrifice: “Let it be sweet as the perfume of the smoking spices of the morning; let it be as acceptable as the burning lamb of eventide.

Psalms 141:3. Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.

Our mouth is a door, and it needs a watchman, and there is no watchman who can keep it except God himself: “Set a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.”

Psalms 141:4. Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practice wicked works with men that work iniquity : and let me not eat of their dainties.

That last petition is a very proper one; we are neither to think the thoughts of the wicked, nor to practice their ways, nor to enjoy their pleasures: “Let me not eat of their dainties.” There are certain amusements which are fraught with sin: “Let me not eat of their dainties.” There are some erroneous doctrines, which are very pleasant to the taste of those who believe them: “Let me not eat of their dainties.” There are some sins that seem to have a peculiarly sweet flavor, and so are very attractive to men: “Let me not eat of their dainties.”

Psalms 141:5. Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness :-

You see, dear friends, David cries out against slander, he cannot bear that wicked men should lie against his character; but he says, “I do not want to be let alone where I am in the wrong; I do not wish to be flattered: ‘ Let the righteous smite me.’ He is the man who ought to do it. When I have done wrong, it is his duty to correct me; and I wish him to do it: ‘ Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness.’”

Psalms 141:5. And let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil, which shall not break my head:

Some people cannot bear to be spoken to about a fault; they feel as if the reprover had broken their head directly, and they are as savage as a bear with a sore head. But the child of God is not so; he looks upon the rebuke of a good man as being like healing, sweet-smelling oil, and he prizes it. Depend upon it, the man who will tell you your faults is your best friend. It may not be a pleasant thing for him to do it, and he knows that he is running the risk of losing your friendship; but he is a true and sincere friend, therefore thank him for his reproof, and learn how you may improve by what he tells you.

Psalms 141:5. For yet my prayer also shall be in their calamities.

I will try to repay the righteous for their rebukes by praying for them when they are in trouble. I will say to my God, “These good men tried to keep me right, and they smote me when I did wrong; now, Lord, they are in trouble, I pray thee to help them, and bring them out of it.”

Psalms 141:6. When their judges are overthrown in stony places, they shall hear my words; for they are sweet.

Wicked men often will not hear the gospel; but when they get into trouble, then they will. When their judges are overthrown in stony places, then they begin to be willing to hear what good men have to say. A bitter world makes a sweet Word; and when providence frowns upon us, it often happens that we love the gospel all the more, and smile upon its messengers, for their words are sweet.

Psalms 141:7. Our bones are scattered at the grave’s mouth, —

“We are like men ready to be put into their graves; or the cause that we advocate seems so totally dead that we seem to be like dry bones that are flung out of a grave.”

Psalms 141:7. As when one cutteth and cleaveth wood upon the earth.

“We feel as if we were like chips out of a tree that has been cut down.”

Psalms 141:8. But mine eyes are unto thee, O God the Lord: in thee is my trust;

“I may be cut to pieces, I may be chopped up, I may seem to be made into a bundle of firewood; but, Lord, my eyes are unto thee: ‘ O God the Lord: in thee is my trust.’”

Psalms 141:8. Leave not my soul destitute.

“If I have thee, I am still rich. Even if I lie at the grave’s mouth, I may still live; but if thou be gone from me, then am I destitute indeed.”

Psalms 141:9-10. Keep me from the snares which they have laid for me, and the gins of the workers of iniquity. Let the wicked fall into their own nets, whilst that I withal escape.

Amen! So let it be!

This exposition consisted of readings from Psalms 140, 141.

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Bibliographical Information
Spurgeon, Charle Haddon. "Commentary on Psalms 141". "Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible". 2011.