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Bible Commentaries

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible
Psalms 69



Verse 1-2

Psalm 69:1-36. Upon Shoshannim - (See on Psalm 45:1, title). Mingling the language of prayer and complaint, the sufferer, whose condition is here set forth, pleads for God‘s help as one suffering in His cause, implores the divine retribution on his malicious enemies, and, viewing his deliverance as sure, promises praise by himself, and others, to whom God will extend like blessings. This Psalm is referred to seven times in the New Testament as prophetical of Christ and the gospel times. Although the character in which the Psalmist appears to some in Psalm 69:5 is that of a sinner, yet his condition as a sufferer innocent of alleged crimes sustains the typical character of the composition, and it may be therefore regarded throughout, as the twenty-second, as typically expressive of the feelings of our Savior in the flesh.

(Compare Psalm 40:2).

come in unto my soul — literally, “come even to my soul,” endanger my life by drowning (Jonah 2:5).

Verse 3

(Compare Psalm 6:6).

mine eyes fail — in watching (Psalm 119:82).

Verse 4

hate me, etc. — (Compare John 15:25). On the number and power of his enemies (compare Psalm 40:12).

then I restored … away — that is, he suffered wrongfully under the imputation of robbery.

Verse 5

This may be regarded as an appeal, vindicating his innocence, as if he had said, “If sinful, thou knowest,” etc. Though David‘s condition as a sufferer may typify Christ‘s, without requiring that a parallel be found in character.

Verse 6

for my sake — literally, “in me,” in my confusion and shame.

Verses 7-12

This plea contemplates his relation to God as a sufferer in His cause. Reproach, domestic estrangement (Mark 3:21; John 7:5), exhaustion in God‘s service (John 2:17), revilings and taunts of base men were the sufferings.

Verse 10

wept (and chastened) my soul — literally, “wept away my soul,” a strongly figurative description of deep grief.

Verse 12

sit in the gate — public place (Proverbs 31:31).

Verses 13-15

With increasing reliance on God, he prays for help, describing his distress in the figures of Psalm 69:1, Psalm 69:2.

Verses 16-18

These earnest terms are often used, and the address to God, as indifferent or averse, is found in Psalm 3:7; Psalm 22:24; Psalm 27:9, etc.

Verse 19-20

Calling God to witness his distress, he presents its aggravation produced by the want of sympathizing friends (compare Isaiah 63:5; Mark 14:50).

Verse 21

Instead of such, his enemies increase his pain by giving him most distasteful food and drink. The Psalmist may have thus described by figure what Christ found in reality (compare John 19:29, John 19:30).

Verse 22-23

With unimportant verbal changes, this language is used by Paul to describe the rejection of the Jews who refused to receive the Savior (Romans 11:9, Romans 11:10). The purport of the figures used is that blessings shall become curses, the “table” of joy (as one of food) a “snare,” their

welfare — literally, “peaceful condition,” or security, a “trap.” Darkened eyes and failing strength complete the picture of the ruin falling on them under the invoked retribution.

Verse 23

continually to shake — literally, “to swerve” or bend in weakness.

Verse 24-25

An utter desolation awaits them. They will not only be driven from their homes, but their homes - or, literally, “palaces,” indicative of wealth - shall be desolate (compare Matthew 23:38).

Verse 26

Though smitten of God (Isaiah 53:4), men were not less guilty in persecuting the sufferer (Acts 2:23).

talk to the grief — in respect to, about it, implying derision and taunts.

wounded — or, literally, “mortally wounded.”

Verse 27-28

iniquity — or, “punishment of iniquity” (Psalm 40:12).

come … righteousness — partake of its benefits.

Verse 28

book of the living — or “life,” with the next clause, a figurative mode of representing those saved, as having their names in a register (compare Exodus 32:32; Isaiah 4:3).

Verse 29

poor and sorrowful — the afflicted pious, often denoted by such terms (compare Psalm 10:17; Psalm 12:5).

set me … high — out of danger.

Verse 30-31

Spiritual are better than mere material offerings (Psalm 40:6; Psalm 50:8); hence a promise of the former, and rather contemptuous terms are used of the latter.

Verse 32-33

Others shall rejoice. “Humble” and poor, as in Psalm 69:29.

your heart, etc. — address to such (compare Psalm 22:26).

Verse 33

prisoners — peculiarly liable to be despised.

Verses 34-36

The call on the universe for praise is well sustained by the prediction of the perpetual and extended blessings which shall come upon the covenant-people of God. Though, as usual, the imagery is taken from terms used of Palestine, the whole tenor of the context indicates that the spiritual privileges and blessings of the Church are meant.


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 69:4". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". 1871-8.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, October 26th, 2020
the Week of Proper 25 / Ordinary 30
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