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

New Living Translation
A song for pilgrims ascending to Jerusalem. I look up to the mountains--does my help come from there?

English Standard Version
A Song of Ascents. I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come?

New American Standard Bible
A Song of Ascents. I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come?

King James Bible
A Song of degrees. I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
A song of ascents. I lift my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from?

International Standard Version
I lift up my eyes toward the mountains— from where will my help come?

NET Bible
A song of ascents. I look up toward the hills. From where does my help come?

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
I shall lift my eyes to the hills; from where will come my helper?

GOD'S WORD® Translation
[A song for going up to worship.] I look up toward the mountains. Where can I find help?

Jubilee Bible 2000
I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains, from whence cometh my help.

King James 2000 Bible
I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from which comes my help.

American King James Version
I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where comes my help.

American Standard Version
I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains: From whence shall my help come?

Douay-Rheims Bible
I have lifted up my eyes to the mountains, from whence help shall come to me.

Darby Bible Translation
{A Song of degrees.} I lift up mine eyes unto the mountains: whence shall my help come?

English Revised Version
A Song of Ascents. I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains: from whence shall my help come?

Webster's Bible Translation
A Song of degrees. I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from whence cometh my help.

World English Bible
I will lift up my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from?

Young's Literal Translation
A Song of the Ascents. I lift up mine eyes unto the hills, Whence doth my help come?
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

121:1-8 The safety of the godly. - We must not rely upon men and means, instruments and second causes. Shall I depend upon the strength of the hills? upon princes and great men? No; my confidence is in God only. Or, we must lift up our eyes above the hills; we must look to God who makes all earthly things to us what they are. We must see all our help in God; from him we must expect it, in his own way and time. This psalm teaches us to comfort ourselves in the Lord, when difficulties and dangers are greatest. It is almighty wisdom that contrives, and almighty power that works the safety of those that put themselves under God's protection. He is a wakeful, watchful Keeper; he is never weary; he not only does not sleep, but he does not so much as slumber. Under this shade they may sit with delight and assurance. He is always near his people for their protection and refreshment. The right hand is the working hand; let them but turn to their duty, and they shall find God ready to give them success. He will take care that his people shall not fall. Thou shalt not be hurt, neither by the open assaults, nor by the secret attempts of thine enemies. The Lord shall prevent the evil thou fearest, and sanctify, remove, or lighten the evil thou feelest. He will preserve the soul, that it be not defiled by sin, and disturbed by affliction; he will preserve it from perishing eternally. He will keep thee in life and death; going out to thy labour in the morning of thy days, and coming home to thy rest when the evening of old age calls thee in. It is a protection for life. The Spirit, who is their Preserver and Comforter, shall abide with them for ever. Let us be found in our work, assured that the blessings promised in this psalm are ours.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 1. - I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills. The "holy hills," that stand round about Jerusalem, are intended (Psalm 87:1; Psalm 125:2). There God had "promised his blessing, even life forevermore" (Psalm 133:3). From whence cometh my help. Most modern critics regard this clause as interrogative, and translate, "Whence is it that my help shall come?" But "the question is only asked to give more effect to the answer" (Cheyne).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills,.... Not to the hills and mountains in Judea, looking about to see if the inhabitants of them, or any bodies of men, appeared upon them to his help in distress; rather to the hills of Moriah and Zion, where the ark of God, the symbol of his presence, was, and to whom he looked for assistance and deliverance: or to heaven, the holy hill of the Lord, and to him that dwelleth there; see Psalm 3:2. The lifting up of the eyes is a prayer gesture, John 11:41; and is expressive of boldness and confidence in prayer, and of hope and expectation of help and salvation, Job 11:15; when, on the contrary, persons abashed and ashamed, hopeless and helpless, cannot look up, or lift up their eyes or face to God, Ezra 9:6. Some read the words, "I will lift up mine eyes upon the hills" (f); standing there and looking up to the heavens, and God in the heavens; who is the most High over all the earth, higher than the highest, and above all gods. Others render them interrogatively, "shall I lift up mine eyes to the hills?" (g) to the idols worshipped on hills and mountains, and pray unto them, and expect help from them? No, I will not; salvation is not to be had from them, Jeremiah 3:23; or to the kings of the nations, as R. Obadiah interprets it; and to powerful kingdoms and states he was in alliance with, comparable to mountains and hills, Psalm 46:2? No, I will not; "it is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes", Psalm 118:9. And so the following clause may be read,

from whence shall my help come? (h) not from hills and mountains; not from men, for vain is the help of man; not from kings and princes, the great men of the earth, nor from the most powerful nations; but from the Lord, as in Psalm 121:2, which may be an answer to this.

(f) "super montes", Vatablus, Amama; so Kimchi. (g) "attollerem oculos meos ad illos montes?" Junius & Tremellius; "attollamne", &c. Piscator; so Gejerus and Ainsworth. (h) So Musculus, Cocceius, Gejerus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Michaelis.

The Treasury of David

1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.

3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved - he that keepeth thee will not slumber.

4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.

5 The Lord is thy keeper, the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.

6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.

7 The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil, he shall preserve thy soul.

8 The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Psalm 121:1

"I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help." It is wise to look to the strong for strength. Dwellers in valleys are subject to many disorders for which there is no cure but a sojourn in the uplands, and it is well when they shake off their lethargy and resolve upon a climb. Down below they are the prey of marauders, and to escape from them the surest method is to fly to the strongholds upon the mountains. Often before the actual ascent the sick and plundered people looked towards the hills and longed to be upon their summits. The holy man who here sings a choice sonnet looked away from the slanderers by whom he was tormented to the Lord who saw all from his high places, and was ready to pour down succour for his injured servant. Help comes to saints only from above, they look elsewhere in vain, let us lift up our eyes with hope, expectancy, desire and confidence. Satan will endeavour to keep our eyes upon our sorrows that we may be disquieted and discouraged; be it ours firmly to resolve that we will look out and look up, for there is good cheer for the eyes, and they that lift up their eyes to the eternal hills shall soon have their hearts lifted up also. The purposes of God; the divine attributes; the immutable promises; the covenant, ordered in all things and sure; the providence, predestination, and proved faithfulness of the Lord - these are the hills to which we must lift our eyes, for from these our help must come. It is our resolve that we will not be bandaged and blindfolded, but will lift up our eyes.

Or is the text in the interrogative? Dose he ask, "Shall I lift up mine eyes to the hills?" Does he feel that the highest places of the earth can afford him no shelter? Or does he renounce the idea of recruits hastening to his standard from the hardy mountaineers? and hence does he again enquire, "Whence cometh my help?" If so, Psalm 121:2 answers the question, and shows whence all help must come.

Psalm 121:2

"My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth." What we need is help, - help powerful, efficient, constant, we need a very present help in trouble. What a mercy that we have it in our God. Our hope is in Jehovah, for our help comes from him. Help is on the road, and will not fail to reach us in due time, for he who sends it to us was never known to be too late. Jehovah who created all things is equal to every emergency; heaven and earth are at the disposal of him who made them, therefore let us be very joyful in our infinite helper. He will sooner destroy heaven and earth than permit his people to be destroyed, and the perpetual hills themselves shall bow rather than he shall fail whose ways are everlasting. We are bound to look beyond heaven and earth to him who made them both, it is vain to trust the creatures' it is wise to trust the Creator.

Psalm 121:3

continued...

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

PSALM 121

Ps 121:1-8. God's guardian care of His people celebrated.

1. I will lift up mine eyes—expresses desire (compare Ps 25:1), mingled with expectation. The last clause, read as a question, is answered,

Psalm 121:1 Additional Commentaries
Context
I will Lift Up My Eyes to the Hills
1A Song of Ascents. I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come? 2My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.…
Cross References
2 Chronicles 20:12
Our God, will you not judge them? For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you."

Psalm 11:1
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.

Psalm 87:1
Of the Sons of Korah. A psalm. A song. He has founded his city on the holy mountain.

Psalm 123:1
A song of ascents. I lift up my eyes to you, to you who sit enthroned in heaven.

Isaiah 40:26
Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.
Treasury of Scripture

I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where comes my help.

title. A Song.

Psalm 120:1 In my distress I cried to the LORD, and he heard me.

I will, etc. or, Shall I lift up my eyes to the hills? whence should my help come?

Jeremiah 3:23 Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the …

lift up

Psalm 2:6 Yet have I set my king on my holy hill of Zion.

Psalm 68:15,16 The hill of God is as the hill of Bashan; an high hill as the hill of Bashan…

Psalm 78:68 But chose the tribe of Judah, the mount Zion which he loved.

Psalm 87:1 His foundation is in the holy mountains.

Psalm 123:1 To you lift I up my eyes, O you that dwell in the heavens.

Isaiah 2:3 And many people shall go and say, Come you, and let us go up to the …

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