Psalm 139:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm. You have searched me, LORD, and you know me.

New Living Translation
For the choir director: A psalm of David. O LORD, you have examined my heart and know everything about me.

English Standard Version
To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David. O LORD, you have searched me and known me!

New American Standard Bible
For the choir director. A Psalm of David. O LORD, You have searched me and known me.

King James Bible
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For the choir director. A Davidic psalm. LORD, You have searched me and known me.

International Standard Version
LORD, you have examined me; you have known me.

NET Bible
For the music director, a psalm of David. O LORD, you examine me and know.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Lord Jehovah, you have searched me and you have known me.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
[For the choir director; a psalm by David.] O LORD, you have examined me, and you know me.

Jubilee Bible 2000
O LORD, thou hast searched me and known me.

King James 2000 Bible
O LORD, you have searched me, and known me.

American King James Version
O lord, you have searched me, and known me.

American Standard Version
O Jehovah, thou hast searched me, and known me .

Douay-Rheims Bible
Lord, thou hast proved me, and known me:

Darby Bible Translation
{To the chief Musician. A Psalm of David.} Jehovah, thou hast searched me, and known [me].

English Revised Version
For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David. LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.

Webster's Bible Translation
To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.

World English Bible
Yahweh, you have searched me, and you know me.

Young's Literal Translation
To the Overseer. -- A Psalm by David. Jehovah, Thou hast searched me, and knowest.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

139:1-6 God has perfect knowledge of us, and all our thoughts and actions are open before him. It is more profitable to meditate on Divine truths, applying them to our own cases, and with hearts lifted to God in prayer, than with a curious or disputing frame of mind. That God knows all things, is omniscient; that he is every where, is omnipresent; are truths acknowledged by all, yet they are seldom rightly believed in by mankind. God takes strict notice of every step we take, every right step and every by step. He knows what rule we walk by, what end we walk toward, what company we walk with. When I am withdrawn from all company, thou knowest what I have in my heart. There is not a vain word, not a good word, but thou knowest from what thought it came, and with what design it was uttered. Wherever we are, we are under the eye and hand of God. We cannot by searching find how God searches us out; nor do we know how we are known. Such thoughts should restrain us from sin.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 1. - O Lord, thou hast searched me; rather, hast searched me out; i.e. examined into all my thoughts and feelings (comp. Psalm 17:3). And known me; i.e. arrived at a full knowledge of my spiritual condition.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. The omniscience of God reaches to all persons and things; but the psalmist only takes notice of it as respecting himself. God knows all men in general, and whatever belongs to them; he knows his own people in a special manner; and he knows their particular persons, as David and others: and this knowledge of God is considered after the manner of men, as if it was the fruit of search, to denote the exquisiteness of it; as a judge searches out a cause, a physician the nature of a disease, a philosopher the reason of things; who many times, after all their inquiries, fail in their knowledge; but the Lord never does: his elect lie in the ruins of the fall, and among the men of the world; he searches them out and finds them; for be knows where they are, and the time of finding them, and can distinguish them in a crowd of men from others, and notwithstanding the sad case they are in, and separates them from them; and he searches into them, into their most inward part, and knows them infinitely better than their nearest relations, friends and acquaintance do; he knows that of them and in them, which none but they themselves know; their thoughts, and the sin that dwells in them: yea, he knows more of them and in them than they themselves, Jeremiah 17:9. And he knows them after another manner than he does other men: there are some whom in a sense he knows not; but these he knows, as he did David, so as to approve of, love and delight in, Matthew 7:23.

The Treasury of David

1 O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.

2 Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

3 Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

4 For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether.

5 Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.

6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

Psalm 139:1

"O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me." He invokes in adoration Jehovah the all-knowing God, and he proceeds to adore him by proclaiming one of his peculiar attributes. If we would praise God aright we must draw the matter of our praise from himself - "O Jehovah, thou hast." No pretended god knows aught of us; but the true God, Jehovah, understands us, and is most intimately acquainted with our persons, nature, and character. How well it is for us to know the God who knows us! The divine knowledge is extremely thorough and searching; it is as if he had searched us, as officers search a man for contraband goods, or as pillagers ransack a house for plunder. Yet we must not let the figure run upon all fours, and lead us further than it is meant to do, the Lord knows all things naturally and as a matter of course, and not by any effort on his part. Searching ordinarily implies a measure of ignorance which is removed by observation; of course this is not the case with the Lord; but the meaning of the Psalmist is, that the Lord knows us as thoroughly as if he had examined us minutely, and had pried into the most secret corners of our being. This infallible knowledge has always existed - "Thou hast searched me": and it continues unto this day, since God cannot forget that which he has once known. There never was a time in which we were unknown to God, and there never will be a moment in which we shall be beyond his observation. Note how the Psalmist makes his doctrine personal, he saith not, "O God, thou knowest all things"; but, "thou hast known me." It is ever our wisdom to lay truth home to ourselves. How wonderful the contrast between the observer and the observed! Jehovah and me! Yet this most intimate connection exists, and therein lies our hope. Let the reader sit still a while and try to realize the two poles of this statement, - the Lord and poor puny man - and he will see much to admire and wonder at.

Psalm 139:2

"Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising." Me thou knowest, and all that comes of me. I am observed when I quietly sit down, and marked when I resolutely rise up. My most common and casual acts, my most needful and necessary movements, are noted by thee, and thou knowest the inward thoughts which regulate them. Whether I sink in lowly self-renunciation, or ascend in pride, thou seest the motions of my mind, as well as those of my body. This is a fact to be remembered every moment: sitting down to consider, or rising up to act, we are still seen, known, and read by Jehovah our Lord. "Thou understandest my thought afar off." Before it is my own it is foreknown and comprehended by thee. Though my thought be invisible to the sight, though as yet I be not myself cognizant of the shape it is assuming, yet thou hast it under thy consideration, and thou perceivest its nature, its source, its drift, its result. Never dost thou misjudge or wrongly interpret me, my inmost thought is perfectly understood by thine impartial mind. Though thou shouldst give but a glance at my heart, and see me as one sees a passing meteor moving afar, yet thou wouldst by that g!impse sum up all the meanings of my soul, so transparent is everything to thy piercing glance.

Psalm 139:3

"Thou compassest my path and my lying down." My path and my pallet, my running and my resting, are alike within the circle of thine observation. Thou dost surround me even as the air continually surrounds all creatures that live. I am shut up within the wall of thy being; I am encircled within the bounds of thy knowledge. Waking or sleeping I am still observed of thee. I may leave thy path, but thou never leavest mine. I may sleep and forget thee, but thou dost never slumber, nor fall into oblivion concerning thy creature. The original signifies not only surrounding, but winnowing and sifting. The Lord judges our active life and our quiet life; he discriminates our action and our repose, and marks that in them which is good and also that which is evil. There is chaff in all our wheat, and the Lord divides them with unerring precision. "And art acquainted with all my ways." Thou art familiar with all I do; nothing is concealed from thee, nor surprising to thee, nor misunderstood by thee. Our paths may be habitual or accidental, open or secret, but with them all the Most Holy One is well acquainted. This should fill us with awe, so that we sin not; with courage, so that we fear not; with delight, so that we mourn not.

Psalm 139:4

"For there is not a word in my tongue, but lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether." The unformed word, which lies within the tongue like a seed in the soft, is certainly and completely known to the Great Searcher of hearts. A negative expression is used to make the positive statement all the stronger: not a word is unknown is a forcible way of saying that every word is well known. Divine knowledge is perfect, since not a single word is unknown, nay, not even an unspoken word, and each one is "altogether" or wholly known. What hope of concealment can remain when the speech with which too many conceal their thoughts is itself transparent before the Lord? O Jehovah, how great art thou! If thine eye hath such power, what must be the united force of thine whole nature!

continued...

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

PSALM 139

Ps 139:1-24. After presenting the sublime doctrines of God's omnipresence and omniscience, the Psalmist appeals to Him, avowing his innocence, his abhorrence of the wicked, and his ready submission to the closest scrutiny. Admonition to the wicked and comfort to the pious are alike implied inferences from these doctrines.

Psalm 139:1 Additional Commentaries
Context
You have Searched Me and Know Me
1For the choir director. A Psalm of David. O LORD, You have searched me and known me. 2You know when I sit down and when I rise up; You understand my thought from afar.…
Cross References
Romans 8:27
And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God's people in accordance with the will of God.

Revelation 2:23
I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds.

Genesis 3:8
Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Genesis 16:13
She gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her: "You are the God who sees me," for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me."

2 Kings 19:27
"'But I know where you are and when you come and go and how you rage against me.

Job 14:16
Surely then you will count my steps but not keep track of my sin.

Psalm 17:3
Though you probe my heart, though you examine me at night and test me, you will find that I have planned no evil; my mouth has not transgressed.

Psalm 44:21
would not God have discovered it, since he knows the secrets of the heart?

Isaiah 37:28
"But I know where you are and when you come and go and how you rage against me.

Jeremiah 12:3
Yet you know me, LORD; you see me and test my thoughts about you. Drag them off like sheep to be butchered! Set them apart for the day of slaughter!

Jeremiah 23:23
"Am I only a God nearby," declares the LORD, "and not a God far away?
Treasury of Scripture

O lord, you have searched me, and known me.

A.M.

thou hast

Psalm 139:23 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

Psalm 11:4,5 The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD's throne is in heaven: his …

Psalm 17:3 You have proved my heart; you have visited me in the night; you have …

Psalm 44:21 Shall not God search this out? for he knows the secrets of the heart.

1 Kings 8:39 Then hear you in heaven your dwelling place, and forgive, and do, …

1 Chronicles 28:9 And you, Solomon my son, know you the God of your father, and serve …

Jeremiah 12:3 But you, O LORD, know me: you have seen me, and tried my heart toward …

Jeremiah 17:9,10 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: …

John 21:17 He said to him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, love you me? …

Hebrews 4:13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight…

Revelation 2:18,23 And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things said …

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