Psalm 140:3
Parallel Verses
New International Version
They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent's; the poison of vipers is on their lips.

New Living Translation
Their tongues sting like a snake; the venom of a viper drips from their lips. Interlude

English Standard Version
They make their tongue sharp as a serpent’s, and under their lips is the venom of asps. Selah

New American Standard Bible
They sharpen their tongues as a serpent; Poison of a viper is under their lips. Selah.

King James Bible
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
They make their tongues as sharp as a snake's bite; viper's venom is under their lips. Selah

International Standard Version
They sharpen their tongues like a serpent; the venom of vipers is on their lips. Interlude

NET Bible
Their tongues wound like a serpent; a viper's venom is behind their lips. (Selah)

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Who have sharpened their tongues like a snake and the venom of an asp is under their lips.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
They make their tongues as sharp as a snake's [fang]. Their lips hide the venom of poisonous snakes. [Selah]

Jubilee Bible 2000
They have sharpened their tongue like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

King James 2000 Bible
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

American King James Version
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

American Standard Version
They have sharpened their tongue like a serpent; Adders poison is under their lips. Selah

Douay-Rheims Bible
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent: the venom of saps is under their lips.

Darby Bible Translation
They sharpen their tongues like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

English Revised Version
They have sharpened their tongue like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah

Webster's Bible Translation
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adder's poison is under their lips. Selah.

World English Bible
They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent. Viper's poison is under their lips. Selah.

Young's Literal Translation
They sharpened their tongue as a serpent, Poison of an adder is under their lips. Selah.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

140:1-7 The more danger appears, the more earnest we should be in prayer to God. All are safe whom the Lord protects. If he be for us, who can be against us? We should especially watch and pray, that the Lord would hold up our goings in his ways, that our footsteps slip not. God is as able to keep his people from secret fraud as from open force; and the experience we have had of his power and care, in dangers of one kind, may encourage us to depend upon him in other dangers.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 3. - They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent (comp. Psalm 52:2; Psalm 57:4; Psalm 59:7; Psalm 64:3). Adders' poison is under their lips (comp. Psalm 58:4; Romans 3:15). The meaning is that their tongues inflict wounds which are as painful as poisoned wounds. The pause-sign, "selah," marks off the first stanza.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent,.... Which Kimchi says it does before it bites. Aristotle (i) observes, that the tip or extreme point of a serpent's tongue is as small as a hair, and so exceeding sharp and piercing. Arama interprets this of the sharpness and cunning of the serpent; and particularly the serpent that deceived Eve, and spake cunningly to her. "For God knoweth", &c. and may design the calumnies and detractions, which were sharp as a razor; as swords, and spears, and arrows, and as the tongue of a serpent, Psalm 57:4; and the subtlety of false teachers, and deceitful workers; and the sharp and cutting words of wicked men against Christ and his people, Jde 1:15;

adder's poison is under their lips; which may signify the malignity of sin in wicked men, which comes from the old serpent the devil; is latent in men; very infectious, like poison, and deadly and incurable, but by the grace of God, and blood of Christ: and may describe particularly the mischief of the tongue, which is a little member, as the asp is a little creature; but very mischievous, full of deadly poison, which lurks in it, lies under it, and which spitting out, it stupifies and kills insensibly; as do the calumnies of wicked men, and the doctrines of false teachers; see Romans 3:13. The Targum is,

"the poison of the spider;''

though it is said (k) the spider is not venomous.

Selah; on this word; see Gill on Psalm 3:2.

(i) Hist. Animal. l. 2. c. 17. (k) Philosoph. Transact. abridged, vol. 2. p. 800. & vol. 5. par. 1. p. 24.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

3. sharpened … like a serpent—not like a serpent does, but they are thus like a serpent in cunning and venom.

Psalm 140:3 Additional Commentaries
Context
Deliver Me, O Lord, from the Evil Man
2Who devise evil things in their hearts; They continually stir up wars. 3They sharpen their tongues as a serpent; Poison of a viper is under their lips. Selah. 4Keep me, O LORD, from the hands of the wicked; Preserve me from violent men Who have purposed to trip up my feet.…
Cross References
Romans 3:13
"Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit." "The poison of vipers is on their lips."

James 3:8
but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.

Psalm 10:7
His mouth is full of lies and threats; trouble and evil are under his tongue.

Psalm 57:4
I am in the midst of lions; I am forced to dwell among ravenous beasts-- men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.

Psalm 58:4
Their venom is like the venom of a snake, like that of a cobra that has stopped its ears,

Psalm 64:3
They sharpen their tongues like swords and aim cruel words like deadly arrows.

Lamentations 3:62
what my enemies whisper and mutter against me all day long.
Treasury of Scripture

They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders' poison is under their lips. Selah.

sharpened

Psalm 52:2,3 The tongue devises mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully…

Psalm 57:4 My soul is among lions: and I lie even among them that are set on …

Psalm 59:7 Behold, they belch out with their mouth: swords are in their lips: …

Psalm 64:3,4 Who whet their tongue like a sword, and bend their bows to shoot …

Proverbs 12:18 There is that speaks like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue …

Isaiah 59:3-5,13 For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; …

Jeremiah 9:3,5 And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are …

James 3:6-8 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among …

like a serpent

Genesis 3:13 And the LORD God said to the woman, What is this that you have done? …

Proverbs 23:32 At the last it bites like a serpent, and stings like an adder.

Matthew 12:34 O generation of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak good things? …

2 Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through …

adders

Psalm 58:4 Their poison is like the poison of a serpent: they are like the deaf …

Romans 3:13,14 Their throat is an open sepulcher; with their tongues they have used …

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