Psalm 139:13
Parallel Verses
New International Version
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.

New Living Translation
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb.

English Standard Version
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.

New American Standard Bible
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb.

King James Bible
For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For it was You who created my inward parts; You knit me together in my mother's womb.

International Standard Version
It was you who formed my internal organs, fashioning me within my mother's womb.

NET Bible
Certainly you made my mind and heart; you wove me together in my mother's womb.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Because you have prepared my kidneys and you have carried me from the womb of my mother.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You alone created my inner being. You knitted me together inside my mother.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For thou hast possessed my kidneys: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

King James 2000 Bible
For you have formed my inward parts: you have covered me in my mother's womb.

American King James Version
For you have possessed my reins: you have covered me in my mother's womb.

American Standard Version
For thou didst form my inward parts: Thou didst cover me in my mother's womb.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast protected me from my mother's womb.

Darby Bible Translation
For thou hast possessed my reins; thou didst cover me in my mother's womb.

English Revised Version
For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

Webster's Bible Translation
For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

World English Bible
For you formed my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother's womb.

Young's Literal Translation
For Thou -- Thou hast possessed my reins, Thou dost cover me in my mother's belly.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

139:7-16 We cannot see God, but he can see us. The psalmist did not desire to go from the Lord. Whither can I go? In the most distant corners of the world, in heaven, or in hell, I cannot go out of thy reach. No veil can hide us from God; not the thickest darkness. No disguise can save any person or action from being seen in the true light by him. Secret haunts of sin are as open before God as the most open villanies. On the other hand, the believer cannot be removed from the supporting, comforting presence of his Almighty Friend. Should the persecutor take his life, his soul will the sooner ascend to heaven. The grave cannot separate his body from the love of his Saviour, who will raise it a glorious body. No outward circumstances can separate him from his Lord. While in the path of duty, he may be happy in any situation, by the exercise of faith, hope, and prayer.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 13. - For thou hast possessed my reins. Thou knowest me and seest me always, because thou madest me. Thy omniscience and thy omnipresence both rest upon thine omnipotence. Thou hast covered me (rather, woven me) in my mother's womb (comp. Job 10:11).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For thou hast possessed my reins,.... His thoughts and counsels, the reins being the seat of instruction and counsel; hence God is called the trier of the reins, and searcher of the hearts of the children of men; he is the possessor or master of their most secret thoughts, and thoroughly knows them; see Psalm 7:9; they are also the seat of the affections, which are naturally sinful and inordinate, and set upon carnal and earthly things; but the Lord possesses and engrosses the affections of his people in the best sense, Psalm 73:25; moreover the reins are the seat of lust, the bed in which it is conceived and brought forth, and God knows the first motions of it there; and that the imagination of the thought of man's heart is evil continually, Genesis 6:5;

thou hast covered me in my mother's womb; with the secundine, or afterbirth, in which he carefully wrapped him, a proof of his knowledge of him, and care for him in the womb; or with skin and flesh he covered his bones with as they grew there; see Job 10:11; or the sense is, he protected and defended him in his embryo state, and when ripe for birth took him out from thence, and held him up ever since, Psalm 22:9; he had his eye on him when no other eye could see him, not even his mother that bare him, and before ever he himself saw light. The Targum is,

"thou hast founded me in my mother's womb.''

The Treasury of David

13 For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made, marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

16 Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

Psalm 139:13

"For thou hast possessed my reins." Thou art the owner of my inmost parts and passions: not the indweller and observer only, but the acknowledged lord and possessor of my most secret self. The word "reins" signifies the kidneys, which by the Hebrews were supposed to be the seat of the desires and longings; but perhaps it indicates here the most hidden and vital portion of the man; this God cloth not only inspect, and visit, but it is his own; he is as much at home there as a landlord on his own estate, or a proprietor in his own house. "Thou hast covered me in my mother's womb." There I lay hidden - covered by thee. Before I could know thee, or aught else, thou hadst a care for me, and didst hide me away as a treasure till thou shouldst see fit to bring me to the light. Thus the Psalmist describes the intimacy which God had with him. In his most secret part - his reins, and in his most secret condition - yet unborn, he was under the control and guardianship of God.

Psalm 139:14

"I will praise thee:" a good resolve, and one which he was even now carrying out. Those who are praising God are the very men who will praise him. Those who wish to praise have subjects for adoration ready to hand. We too seldom remember our creation, and all the skill and kindness bestowed upon our frame, but the sweet singer of Israel was better instructed, and therefore he prepares for the chief musician a song concerning our nativity and all the fashioning which precedes it. We cannot begin too soon to bless our Maker, who began so soon to bless us: even in the act of creation he created reasons for our praising his name. "For I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Who can gaze even upon a model of our anatomy without wonder and awe? Who could dissect a portion of the human frame without marvelling at its delicacy, and trembling at its frailty? The Psalmist had scarcely peered within the veil which hides the nerves, sinews, and blood-vessels from common inspection; the science of anatomy was quite unknown to him; and yet he had seen enough to arouse his admiration of the work and his reverence for the Worker. "Marvellous are thy works." These parts of my frame are all thy works; and though they be home works, close under my own eye, yet are they wonderful to the last degree. They are works within my own self, yet are they beyond my understanding, and appear to me as so many miracles of skill and power. We need not go to the ends of the earth for marvels, nor even across our own threshold; they abound in our own bodies.

"And that my soul knoweth right well." He was no agnostic - he knew; he was no doubter - his soul knew; he was no dupe - his soul knew right well. Those know indeed and of a truth who first know the Lord, and then know all things in him. He was made to know the marvellous nature of God's work with assurance and accuracy, for he had found by experience that the Lord is a master-worker, performing inimitable wonders when accomplishing his kind designs. If we are marvelously wrought upon even before we are born, what shall we say of the Lord's dealings with us after we quit his secret workshop, and he directs our pathway through the pilgrimage of life? What shall we not say of that new birth which is even more mysterious than the first, and exhibits even more the love and wisdom of the Lord.

Psalm 139:15

"My substance was not hid from thee." The substantial part of my being was before thine all-seeing eye; the bones which make my frame were put together by thine hand. The essential materials of my being before they were arranged were all within the range of thine eye. I was hidden from all human knowledge, but not from thee: thou hast ever been intimately acquainted with me. "When I was made in secret." Most chastely and beautifully is here described the formation of our being before the time of our birth. A great artist will often labour alone in his studio, and not suffer his work to be seen until it is finished; even so did the Lord fashion us where no eye beheld us, and the veil was not lifted till every member was complete. Much of the formation of our inner man still proceeds in secret; hence the more of solitude the better for us. The true church also is being fashioned in secret, so that none may cry, "Lo, here!" or "Lo, there!" as if that which is visible could ever be identical with the invisibly growing body of Christ. "And curiously wrought it in the lowest parts of the earth." "Embroidered with great skill," is an accurate poetical description of the creation of veins, sinews, muscles, nerves, etc. What tapestry can equal the human fabric? This work is wrought as much in private as if it had been accomplished in the grave, or in the darkness of the abyss. The expressions are poetical, beautifully veiling, though not absolutely concealing, the real meaning. God's intimate knowledge of us from the beginning, and even before it, is here most charmingly set forth. Cannot he who made us thus wondrously when we were not, still carry on his work of power till he has perfected us, though we feel unable to aid in the process, and are lying in great sorrow and self-loathing, as though cast into the lowest parts of the earth?

Psalm 139:16

continued...



Psalm 139:13 Additional Commentaries
Context
You have Searched Me and Know Me
12Even the darkness is not dark to You, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You. 13For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb. 14I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well.…
Cross References
Job 10:11
clothe me with skin and flesh and knit me together with bones and sinews?

Psalm 119:73
Your hands made me and formed me; give me understanding to learn your commands.

Ecclesiastes 11:5
As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.

Isaiah 44:24
"This is what the LORD says-- your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb: I am the LORD, the Maker of all things, who stretches out the heavens, who spreads out the earth by myself,
Treasury of Scripture

For you have possessed my reins: you have covered me in my mother's womb.

for thou

Job 10:9-12 Remember, I beseech you, that you have made me as the clay; and will …

covered me

Psalm 22:9,10 But you are he that took me out of the womb: you did make me hope …

Psalm 71:6 By you have I been held up from the womb: you are he that took me …

Job 31:15 Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion …

Isaiah 44:2 Thus said the LORD that made you, and formed you from the womb, which …

Isaiah 46:3 Listen to me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house …

Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed you in the belly I knew you; and before you came …

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