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Bible Commentaries

Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Psalms 64



The matter of this Psalm plainly declares that it was made in a time when David was greatly distressed and reproached; which he was both under Saul, and in the time of Absalom’s rebellion.

The psalmist complaining of his enemies, and describing their crafty and wicked practices, prayeth unto God for guard and deliverance, Psalms 64:1-6; foretelleth also their utter ruin, to the honour of God, and joy of the righteous, Psalms 64:7-10.

Verse 1

From fear, i.e. from danger; the act or passion of fear being oft put for its object, danger, as Psalms 14:5; 1 Peter 3:14, and oft elsewhere.

Verse 2

From the secret counsel, i.e. from the ill effects of their plots against me.

Verse 3

Bend their bows to shoot their arrows; of which phrase See Poole "Psalms 58:7". Bitter words; slanderous and pernicious speeches against me.

Verse 4

In secret; lying in ambush, or hiding themselves in secret places, as fowlers commonly do.

The perfect; or, upright man; i.e. at me, who in spite of all their calumnies dare avow that my heart is perfect with God, and that I am blameless as to them, having given them no just provocation.

Suddenly; at the very first opportunity.

Fear not; neither men, because they conceal it from them, as appears from the foregoing and following words; nor God, whose judgments they despise.

Verse 5

They encourage themselves, Heb. they strengthen or fortify themselves, by firm resolutions, by assured confidence of success, by uniting their counsels and forces together, and by mutual encouragements and exhortations.

Who shall see them? their snares are so secretly laid that David cannot discern, and therefore not avoid them.

Verse 6

They search out iniquities; they study diligently and constantly to find out either matter, which they may lay to my charge, or new ways and means of doing me mischief.

They accomplish a diligent search; they have long and accurately searched, till at last they have ripened and perfected their thoughts, and found out a very cunning and deep plot. Or, they say, We have accomplished our accurate search. By long searching we have at last found what we desired. The heart is deep; mine enemies are not only cruel and malicious, but also very cunning, both to contrive and conceal, and to execute their plots.

Verse 7

God shall shoot at them; though I can neither search out or prevent their subtle devices, yet God can and will certainly do it.

Suddenly; shortly and unexpectedly.

Verse 8

The mischief of their hard speeches, and threats, and crafty counsels against me shall be turned against themselves.

Shall flee away; partly through abhorrency of them, and partly through fear of being involved in their destruction.

Verse 9

All men, i.e. the greater number of those who shall see these events.

The work of God, i.e. this admirable work of Divine power, and wisdom, and faithfulness.

Wisely consider of his doing; learning wisdom by their folly and misery, and avoiding those evil courses which brought them to ruin.

Verse 10

In the Lord; or, for the Lord, i.e. not out of malice or ill will to the persons of their enemies, but for the honour of God, which by this means is fully vindicated and greatly advanced.

Shall glory, to wit, in God, as their sure Rock and all-sufficient Portion.

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 64". Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. 1685.