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Bible Commentaries

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Psalms 17

Verses 1-15

Psalms 17:3 . Thou hast tried me. Vulgate, Igne me examinâsti, Thou hast proved or tested me with fire, referring to the test of metals.

Psalms 17:14 . Men which have their portion in this life, as in Luke 16:25. The holy patriarchs, on the contrary, expected their portion in the life to come, and died believing in the promises. The Lord kept David under the shadow of his wings, safe from Saul’s lions, that lurked for his life.


We are taught to carry all our troubles to the Lord, and to labour after sincerity of heart. God is a Spirit, and must be worshipped in spirit and in truth. “A sense of the divine omniscience should regulate our words and thoughts. His eyes behold the things that are equal; he tries and proves us, and is intimately acquainted with our true character; therefore we should steadily purpose and resolve that our mouth shall not transgress, and that our words and thoughts shall be such as he approves.

To arm us against temptation, let us consider that the path of sin is the path of the destroyer. It is the way of Satan, who was a destroyer from the beginning, and who still leads to destruction. Let us attend to the words of God, that we may learn our danger and our duty, and pray that he would hold us up and preserve us, even when we have formed the best resolutions; then we may hope that he will guard us with the greatest care and tenderness.

It is comfortable to think, that the bitterest and most powerful enemies are only a sword in God’s hand, his instruments in chastising his people. He manages them as he pleaseth; they can do nothing without his leave, and cannot exceed his commission. The wrath of man therefore shall praise him, and the remainder of wrath he will restrain.

Let us often meditate on this sublime and delightful view of heaven, this bright abridgment of future blessedness. It consists in seeing and knowing God; in being like him, and transformed into his spotless image. This will yield us entire satisfaction, when nothing else can; and the hope of it should reconcile us to the prosperity of the wicked, and to our own troubles; and engage us to purify ourselves even as He is pure, since none but the pure in heart shall see God.” ORTON.

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Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 17". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. 1835.