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Bible Commentaries

Peake's Commentary on the Bible

Psalms 37

Verses 1-40

XXXVII. An acrostic poem. Its object is to teach patience and hope. The pious Jews, the Hasidim of Psalms 4:3 * who observe the Law strictly, are at present poor and oppressed. They are to wait for the end, when God will separate the good from the bad and will recompense men according to their deserts.

Psalms 37:1 agrees almost verbally with Proverbs 29:14. For the “ envy” intended, see Psalms 73:3.

Psalms 37:4 a. Render as mg. Godly men find their delight in Yahweh because they do His will, and He in return answers their prayers.

Psalms 37:6 . God manifests the “ righteousness” of the godly, i.e. the fact that they are in the right. Their “ judgment” is their plea, which in the end gains the day. The language is borrowed from the courts of law.

Psalms 37:8 . to evil-doing: render “ to thine own hurt,” i.e. by fruitless anger and jealousy.

Psalms 37:11 . peace: substitute “ prosperity.”

Psalms 37:13 . his day: i.e. the day of judgment.

Psalms 37:16 b. Read “ than the great abundance of the wicked”

Psalms 37:20 . Neither RV nor RVm makes any sense. Wellhausen’ s brilliant conjecture sets matters right. “ The enemies of Yahweh shall be as the burning of ovens,” i.e. as the stubble and other rubbish thrown into the oven. “ As fuel they vanish in smoke, they vanish.” The LXX has a completely different text: “ When they are glorified and exalted, the enemies of the Lord fail utterly like smoke.”

Psalms 37:35 . Read with LXX, “ I have seen an impious man exalted and rising like the cedars of Lebanon: And I passed by and behold! he was gone.”

Psalms 37:37 . Translate, “ There is a future for the peaceable man” ( cf. mg.) , in the Messianic age, when Yahweh will establish the pious and expel sinners from the land of Israel.

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Bibliographical Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Psalms 37". "Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". 1919.