|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
139:17-24 God's counsels concerning us and our welfare are deep, such as cannot be known. We cannot think how many mercies we have received from him. It would help to keep us in the fear of the Lord all the day long, if, when we wake in the morning, our first thoughts were of him: and how shall we admire and bless our God for his precious salvation, when we awake in the world of glory! Surely we ought not to use our members and senses, which are so curiously fashioned, as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin. But our immortal and rational souls are a still more noble work and gift of God. Yet if it were not for his precious thoughts of love to us, our reason and our living for ever would, through our sins, prove the occasion of our eternal misery. How should we then delight to meditate on God's love to sinners in Jesus Christ, the sum of which exceeds all reckoning! Sin is hated, and sinners lamented, by all who fear the Lord. Yet while we shun them we should pray for them; with God their conversion and salvation are possible. As the Lord knows us thoroughly, and we are strangers to ourselves, we should earnestly desire and pray to be searched and proved by his word and Spirit. if there be any wicked way in me, let me see it; and do thou root it out of me. The way of godliness is pleasing to God, and profitable to us; and will end in everlasting life. It is the good old way. All the saints desire to be kept and led in this way, that they may not miss it, turn out of it, or tire in it.
Verse 24. - And see if there be any wicked way in me; literally, any way of grief. "Ways of grief" are ways which lead to grief, which involve either bitter repentance or severe chastisement. And lead me in the way everlasting; i.e. either "the way that leadeth to everlasting life," or "the good old way, the way that endures - the way of righteousness." David, with all his faults, is one of those who "hunger and thirst after righteousness" (Matthew 5:6).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And see if there be any wicked way in me,.... Not that David thought himself free from wickedness, or that there was none to be found in his heart and life; and therefore said this in a boasting way, he knew otherwise; see Psalm 19:12; but he is desirous it might be thoroughly looked into and seen whether there was any such wicked way in him he was charged with; as that he had a design upon the life of Saul, and to seize his throne and kingdom, which never entered into his mind, 1 Samuel 24:9. Or, "any way of grief" (d); what tended to wound and grieve his own soul, or to grieve the hearts of God's people; or to grieve the Holy Spirit of God; and which he ought to grieve for and repent of: suggesting, that upon the first conviction he was ready to relinquish any such wicked way, and express his abhorrence of it, and testify true repentance for it. Some render it, "the way of an idol" (e); because a word from the same root signifies an idol: every carnal lust in a man's heart is an idol; and whatsoever engrosses the affections, or has more of them than God himself has, or is preferred to him, Ezekiel 14:4. The Targum is,
"and see if the way of those that err is me;''
and lead me in the way everlasting; or, "in the way of old" (f): the good old way, the ancient path, in which the patriarchs before and after the flood walked, Or, "in the perpetual way" (g); the way that endures for ever; in opposition to the way of the wicked, that perishes, Psalm 1:6; or in the way that leads to everlasting life, to eternal peace and rest, and endless pleasures; as opposed to the way of grief and sorrow. It designs Christ, the true and only way to eternal life, the path of faith, truth, and godliness, Matthew 7:13; in which the Lord leads his people, as a father does his child, and as the shepherd his flock. The Jewish commentators, Aben Ezra and Kimchi, interpret it the way of the world; and take it to be the same with the way of all flesh, death, or the grave; which is called man's world, or home, Joshua 23:14; and make the sense to be this: If thou seest any evil in me, take me out of the world; kill me at once, let me die But this seems to be foreign from the text; for the word "lead" designs a blessing or benefit, as Calvin well observes. The Targum is,
"lead me in the way of the upright of the world;''
the way in which upright men walk.
(d) "via doloris", Montanus, Cocceius, Gejerus, Michaelis; so Ainsworth. (e) "Via idoli"; so some in Vatablus. (f) "per viam sepiternam", Pagninus, Vatablus; "per viam antiquam", Gussetius; so Ainsworth. (g) "In via perpetua", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.
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