Psalm 11:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
For the director of music. Of David. In the LORD I take refuge. How then can you say to me: "Flee like a bird to your mountain.

New Living Translation
For the choir director: A psalm of David. I trust in the LORD for protection. So why do you say to me, "Fly like a bird to the mountains for safety!

English Standard Version
To the choirmaster. Of David. In the LORD I take refuge; how can you say to my soul, “Flee like a bird to your mountain,

New American Standard Bible
For the choir director. A Psalm of David. In the LORD I take refuge; How can you say to my soul, "Flee as a bird to your mountain;

King James Bible
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For the choir director. Davidic. I have taken refuge in the LORD. How can you say to me," Escape to the mountain like a bird!

International Standard Version
I take refuge in the LORD. So how can you say to me, "Flee like a bird to the mountains."?

NET Bible
For the music director; by David. In the LORD I have taken shelter. How can you say to me, "Flee to a mountain like a bird!

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
In Lord Jehovah I have hoped; how do you say to my soul, “Escape and dwell on the mountains like a bird?”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
[For the choir director; by David.] I have taken refuge in the LORD. How can you say to me: "Flee to your mountain like a bird?

Jubilee Bible 2000
I put my trust in the LORD put I: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

King James 2000 Bible
In the LORD put I my trust: how say you to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

American King James Version
In the LORD put I my trust: how say you to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

American Standard Version
In Jehovah do I take refuge: How say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain;

Douay-Rheims Bible
Unto the end. A psalm for David. In the Lord I put my trust: how then do you say to my soul: Get thee away from hence to the mountain like a sparrow?

Darby Bible Translation
{To the chief Musician. [A Psalm] of David.} In Jehovah have I put my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee [as] a bird to your mountain?

English Revised Version
For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David. In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

Webster's Bible Translation
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. In the LORD I put my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

World English Bible
In Yahweh, I take refuge. How can you say to my soul, "Flee as a bird to your mountain!"

Young's Literal Translation
To the Overseer. -- By David. In Jehovah I trusted, how say ye to my soul, 'They moved to Thy mountain for the bird?
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

11:1-7 David's struggle with, and triumph over a strong temptation to distrust God, and betake himself to indirect means for his own safety, in a time of danger. - Those that truly fear God and serve him, are welcome to put their trust in him. The psalmist, before he gives an account of his temptation to distrust God, records his resolution to trust in Him, as that by which he was resolved to live and die. The believer, though not terrified by his enemies, may be tempted, by the fears of his friends, to desert his post, or neglect his work. They perceive his danger, but not his security; they give him counsel that savours of worldly policy, rather than of heavenly wisdom. The principles of religion are the foundations on which the faith and hope of the righteous are built. We are concerned to hold these fast against all temptations to unbelief; for believers would be undone, if they had not God to go to, God to trust in, and future bliss to hope for. The prosperity of wicked people in their wicked, evil ways, and the straits and distresses which the best men are sometimes brought into, tried David's faith. We need not say, Who shall go up to heaven, to fetch us thence a God to trust in? The word is nigh us, and God in the word; his Spirit is in his saints, those living temples, and the Lord is that Spirit. This God governs the world. We may know what men seem to be, but God knows what they are, as the refiner knows the value of gold when he has tried it. God is said to try with his eyes, because he cannot err, or be imposed upon. If he afflicts good people, it is for their trial, therefore for their good. However persecutors and oppressors may prosper awhile, they will for ever perish. God is a holy God, and therefore hates them. He is a righteous Judge, and will therefore punish them. In what a horrible tempest are the wicked hurried away at death! Every man has the portion of his cup assigned him. Impenitent sinner, mark your doom! The last call to repentance is about to be addressed to you, judgement is at hand; through the gloomy shade of death you pass into the region of eternal wrath. Hasten then, O sinner, to the cross of Christ. How stands the case between God and our souls? Is Christ our hope, our consolation, our security? Then, not otherwise, will the soul be carried through all its difficulties and conflicts.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 1. - In the Lord put I my trust; or, in the Lord have I taken refuge (Kay, Cheyne). Before his friends address him on the subject of his danger, David has himself recognized it, and has fled to God for succour. How say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain? rather, flee ye, birds, to your mountain. Probably a proverbial expression, used when it was necessary to warn a man that in flight lay his only safety. The singular (צִפור) is used collectively.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

In the Lord put I my trust,.... Not in himself, in his own heart, nor in his own righteousness and strength; nor in men, the greatest of men, the princes of the earth; nor in his armies, or any outward force; but in the Lord, as the God of providence and of grace; and in the Messiah, in his person and righteousness; so the Chaldee paraphrase renders it, "in the Word of the Lord do I:hope": and the phrase denotes a continued exercise of faith in the Lord; that he was always looking to him, staying himself on him, and committing himself and all his concerns to him; for he does not say, I "have", or I "will", but I "do", put my trust in the Lord; at all times, even in the worst of times, and in the present one; wherefore he is displeased with his friends for endeavouring to intimidate him, persuading him to flee and provide for his safety, when he had betaken himself to the Lord, and was safe enough;

how say ye to my soul, flee as a bird to your mountain? they compare him to a little, fearful, trembling bird, wandering from its nest, moving through fear from place to place, whereas his heart was fixed, trusting in the Lord; and this gave him a disgust: they advise him to flee either "from" his mountain, so Kimchi and Ben Melech interpret it; that is, either from Judea, which was a mountainous country, especially some parts of it; or from Mount Zion, or rather from the mountain in the wilderness of Ziph, or the hill of Hachilah, where David sometimes was, 1 Samuel 23:14; or it may be rendered "to your mountain", as we, so the Targum; that is, to the said place or places where he had sometimes hid himself; and this they said to his "soul", which was very cutting and grieving to him; the word rendered "flee" in the "Cetib", or writing of the text, is in the plural, "flee ye"; but is pointed for, and in the "Keri", or marginal reading, is "flee thou"; the latter agrees with this being said to David's soul, the former with the phrase "your mountain", and both are to be taken into the sense of the words; not as if the one respected David's soul only, and the other both soul and body, as Kimchi and Ben Melech observe; but the one regards David's person, and the other his companions, or the people with him; and contains an advice, both to him and them, to flee for their safety; the reasons follow.

The Treasury of David

1 In the Lord put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain.

2 For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, they make ready their arrow upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart.

3 If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?

These verses contain an account of a temptation to distrust God, with which David was, upon some unmentioned occasion, greatly exercised. It may be, that in the days when he was in Saul's court, he was advised to flee at a time when this flight would have been charged against him as a breach of duty to the king, or a proof of personal cowardice. His case was like that of Nehemiah, when his enemies, under the garb of friendship, hoped to entrap him by advising him to escape for his life. Had he done so, they could then have found a ground of accusation. Nehemiah bravely replied, "Shall such a man as I flee?" and David, in a like spirit, refuses to retreat, exclaiming, "In the Lord put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?" When Satan cannot overthrow us by presumption, how craftily will he seek to ruin us by distrust! He will employ our dearest friends to argue us out of our confidence, and he will use such plausible logic, that unless we once for all assert our immovable trust in Jehovah, he will make us like the timid bird which flies to the mountain whenever danger presents itself. How forcibly the case is put! The bow is bent, the arrow is fitted to the string: "Flee, flee, thou defenceless bird, thy safety lies in flight; be gone, for thine enemies will send their shafts into thy heart; haste, haste, for soon wilt thou be destroyed!" David seems to have felt the force of the advice, for it came home to his soul; but yet he would not yield, but would rather dare the danger than exhibit a distrust in the Lord his God. Doubtless, the perils which encompassed David were great and imminent; it was quite true that his enemies were ready to shoot privily at him; it was equally correct that the very foundations of law and justice were destroyed under Saul's unrighteous government: but what were all these things to the man whose trust was in God alone? He could brave the dangers, could escape the enemies, and defy the injustice which surrounded him. His answer to the question, "What can the righteous do?" would be the counter-question, "What cannot they do?" When prayer engages God on our side, and when faith secures the fulfilment of the promise, what cause can there be for flight, smitten a giant before whom the whole hosts of Israel were trembling, and the Lord, who delivered him from the uncircumcised Philistine, could surely deliver him from King Saul and his myrmidons. There is no such word as "impossibility" in the language of faith; that martial grace knows how to fight and conquer, but she knows not how to flee.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

PSALM 11

Ps 11:1-7. On title, see [574]Introduction. Alluding to some event in his history, as in 1Sa 23:13, the Psalmist avows his confidence in God, when admonished to flee from his raging persecutors, whose destruction of the usual foundations of safety rendered all his efforts useless. The grounds of his confidence are God's supreme dominion, His watchful care of His people, His hatred to the wicked and judgments on them, and His love for righteousness and the righteous.

1. my soul—me (Ps 3:2).

Flee—literally, "flee ye"; that is, he and his companion.

as a bird to your mountain—having as such no safety but in flight (compare 1Sa 26:20; La 3:52).

Psalm 11:1 Additional Commentaries
Context
In the Lord I Take Refuge
1For the choir director. A Psalm of David. In the LORD I take refuge; How can you say to my soul, "Flee as a bird to your mountain; 2For, behold, the wicked bend the bow, They make ready their arrow upon the string To shoot in darkness at the upright in heart.…
Cross References
Psalm 2:12
Kiss his son, or he will be angry and your way will lead to your destruction, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Psalm 56:3
When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.

Psalm 64:10
The righteous will rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him; all the upright in heart will glory in him!

Psalm 121:1
A song of ascents. I lift up my eyes to the mountains-- where does my help come from?

Psalm 141:8
But my eyes are fixed on you, Sovereign LORD; in you I take refuge--do not give me over to death.

Jeremiah 48:9
Put salt on Moab, for she will be laid waste; her towns will become desolate, with no one to live in them.

Lamentations 3:52
Those who were my enemies without cause hunted me like a bird.
Treasury of Scripture

In the LORD put I my trust: how say you to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?

A.M.

Psalm 7:1 O LORD my God, in you do I put my trust: save me from all them that …

Psalm 9:10 And they that know your name will put their trust in you: for you, …

Psalm 16:1 Preserve me, O God: for in you do I put my trust.

Psalm 25:2 O my God, I trust in you: let me not be ashamed, let not my enemies …

Psalm 31:14 But I trusted in you, O LORD: I said, You are my God.

Psalm 56:11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do to me.

2 Chronicles 14:11 And Asa cried to the LORD his God, and said, LORD, it is nothing …

2 Chronicles 16:8 Were not the Ethiopians and the Lubims a huge host, with very many …

Isaiah 26:3,4 You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you: …

how

1 Samuel 19:11 Saul also sent messengers to David's house, to watch him, and to …

1 Samuel 20:38 And Jonathan cried after the lad, Make speed, haste, stay not. And …

1 Samuel 21:10-12 And David arose and fled that day for fear of Saul, and went to Achish …

1 Samuel 22:3 And David went there to Mizpeh of Moab: and he said to the king of …

1 Samuel 23:14 And David stayed in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained …

1 Samuel 27:1 And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul…

Flee

Psalm 55:6,7 And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly …

Proverbs 6:5 Deliver yourself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird …

Luke 13:31 The same day there came certain of the Pharisees, saying to him, …

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