Psalm 143:7
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Answer me quickly, O LORD! My spirit fails! Hide not your face from me, lest I be like those who go down to the pit.

King James Bible
Hear me speedily, O LORD: my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me, lest I be like unto them that go down into the pit.

American Standard Version
Make haste to answer me, O Jehovah; my spirit faileth: Hide not thy face from me, Lest I become like them that go down into the pit.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Hear me speedily, O Lord: my spirit hath fainted away. Turn not away thy face from me, lest I be like unto them that go down into the pit.

English Revised Version
Make haste to answer me, O LORD; my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me; lest I become like them that go down into the pit.

Webster's Bible Translation
Hear me speedily, O LORD: my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me, lest I be like them that go down into the pit.

Psalm 143:7 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The poet pleads two motives for the answering of his prayer which are to be found in God Himself, viz., God's אמוּנה, truthfulness, with which He verifies the truth of His promises, that is to say, His faithfulness to His promises; and His צדקה, righteousness, not in a recompensative legal sense, but in an evangelical sense, in accordance with His counsel, i.e., the strictness and earnestness with which He maintains the order of salvation established by His holy love, both against the ungratefully disobedient and against those who insolently despise Him. Having entered into this order of salvation, and within the sphere of it serving Jahve as his God and Lord, the poet is the servant of Jahve. And because the conduct of the God of salvation, ruled by this order of salvation, or His "righteousness" according to its fundamental manifestation, consists in His justifying the sinful man who has no righteousness that he can show corresponding to the divine holiness, but penitently confesses this disorganized relationship, and, eager for salvation, longs for it to be set right again - because of all this, the poet prays that He would not also enter into judgment (בּוא בּמשׁפּט as in Job 9:32; Job 22:4; Job 14:3) with him, that He therefore would let mercy instead of justice have its course with him. For, apart from the fact that even the holiness of the good spirits does not coincide with God's absolute holiness, and that this defect must still be very far greater in the case of spirit-corporeal man, who has earthiness as the basis of his origin-yea, according to Psalm 51:7, man is conceived in sin, so that he is sinful from the point at which he begins to live onward - his life is indissolubly interwoven with sin, no living man possesses a righteousness that avails before God (Job 4:17; Job 9:2; Job 14:3., Job 15:14, and frequently).

(Note: Gerson observes on this point (vid., Thomasius, Dogmatik, iv. 251): I desire the righteousness of pity, which Thou bestowest in the present life, not the judgment of that righteousness which Thou wilt put into operation in the future life - the righteousness which justifies the repentant one.)

With כּי (Psalm 143:3) the poet introduces the ground of his petition for an answer, and more particularly for the forgiveness of his guilt. He is persecuted by deadly foes and is already nigh unto death, and that not without transgression of his own, so that consequently his deliverance depends upon the forgiveness of his sins, and will coincide with this. "The enemy persecuteth my soul" is a variation of language taken from Psalm 7:6 (חיּה for חיּים, as in Psalm 78:50, and frequently in the Book of Job, more particularly in the speeches of Elihu). Psalm 143:3 also recalls Psalm 7:6, but as to the words it sounds like Lamentations 3:6 (cf. Psalm 88:7). מתי עולם (lxx νεκροὺς αἰῶνος) are either those for ever dead (the Syriac), after שׁנת עולם in Jeremiah 51:39, cf. בּית עולמו in Ecclesiastes 12:5, or those dead time out of mind (Jerome), after עם עולם in Ezekiel 26:20. The genitive construction admits both senses; the former, however, is rendered more natural by the consideration that הושׁיבני glances back to the beginning that seems to have no end: the poet seems to himself like one who is buried alive for ever. In consequence of this hostility which aims at his destruction, the poet feels his spirit within him, and consequently his inmost life, veil itself (the expression is the same as Psalm 142:4; Psalm 77:4); and in his inward part his heart falls into a state of disturbance (ישׁתּומם, a Hithpo. peculiar to the later language), so that it almost ceases to beat. He calls to mind the former days, in which Jahve was manifestly with him; he reflects upon the great redemptive work of God, with all the deeds of might and mercy in which it has hitherto been unfolded; he meditates upon the doing (בּמעשׂה, Ben-Naphtali בּמעשׂה) of His hands, i.e., the hitherto so wondrously moulded history of himself and of his people. They are echoes out of Psalm 77:4-7, Psalm 77:12. The contrast which presents itself to the Psalmist in connection with this comparison of his present circumsntaces with the past opens his wounds still deeper, and makes his prayer for help all the more urgent. He stretches forth his hands to God that He may protect and assist him (vid., Hlemann, Bibelstudien, i. 150f.). Like parched land is his soul turned towards Him, - language in which we recognise a bending round of the primary passage Psalm 63:2. Instead of לך it would be לך, if סלה (Targum לעלמין) were not, as it always is, taken up and included in the sequence of the accents.

Psalm 143:7 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

hear me

Psalm 14:1-4 The fool has said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that does good...

Psalm 40:13,17 Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me: O LORD, make haste to help me...

Psalm 70:5 But I am poor and needy: make haste to me, O God: you are my help and my deliverer; O LORD, make no tarrying.

Psalm 71:12 O God, be not far from me: O my God, make haste for my help.

my spirit

Psalm 40:12 For innumerable evils have compassed me about: my iniquities have taken hold on me, so that I am not able to look up...

Psalm 69:3 I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: my eyes fail while I wait for my God.

Isaiah 57:16 For I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth: for the spirit should fail before me, and the souls which I have made.

Luke 21:26 Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth...

hide not

Psalm 22:24 For he has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither has he hid his face from him; but when he cried to him...

Psalm 27:9 Hide not your face far from me; put not your servant away in anger: you have been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me...

Psalm 69:17 And hide not your face from your servant; for I am in trouble: hear me speedily.

Isaiah 8:17 And I will wait on the LORD, that hides his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him.

lest I be like, etc. or, for I am become like, etc.
unto them

Psalm 28:1 To you will I cry, O LORD my rock; be not silent to me: lest, if you be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.

Psalm 88:4-6,10,11 I am counted with them that go down into the pit: I am as a man that has no strength...

Isaiah 38:18 For the grave cannot praise you, death can not celebrate you: they that go down into the pit cannot hope for your truth.

Cross References
Psalm 27:9
Hide not your face from me. Turn not your servant away in anger, O you who have been my help. Cast me not off; forsake me not, O God of my salvation!

Psalm 28:1
To you, O LORD, I call; my rock, be not deaf to me, lest, if you be silent to me, I become like those who go down to the pit.

Psalm 30:7
By your favor, O LORD, you made my mountain stand strong; you hid your face; I was dismayed.

Psalm 69:17
Hide not your face from your servant, for I am in distress; make haste to answer me.

Psalm 73:26
My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Psalm 84:2
My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the LORD; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God.

Psalm 88:4
I am counted among those who go down to the pit; I am a man who has no strength,

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