Psalm 144:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Of David. Praise be to the LORD my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.

New Living Translation
A psalm of David. Praise the LORD, who is my rock. He trains my hands for war and gives my fingers skill for battle.

English Standard Version
Of David. Blessed be the LORD, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle;

New American Standard Bible
A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD, my rock, Who trains my hands for war, And my fingers for battle;

King James Bible
A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Davidic. May the LORD, my rock, be praised, who trains my hands for battle and my fingers for warfare.

International Standard Version
Blessed be the LORD, my rock, who trains my hands for battle and my fingers for warfare,

NET Bible
By David. The LORD, my protector, deserves praise--the one who trains my hands for battle, and my fingers for war,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Blessed is Lord Jehovah who teaches my hands for war and my fingers for battle!

GOD'S WORD® Translation
[By David.] Thank the LORD, my rock, who trained my hands to fight and my fingers to do battle,

Jubilee Bible 2000
Blessed be the LORD my strength, who trains my hands for the battle and my fingers for the war:

King James 2000 Bible
Blessed be the LORD my strength, who teaches my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:

American King James Version
Blessed be the LORD my strength which teaches my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:

American Standard Version
Blessed be Jehovah my rock, Who teacheth my hands to war, And my fingers to fight:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Blessed be the Lord my God, who teacheth my hands to fight, and my fingers to war.

Darby Bible Translation
{[A Psalm] of David.} Blessed be Jehovah my rock, who teacheth my hands to war, my fingers to fight;

English Revised Version
A Psalm off David. Blessed be the LORD my rock, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:

Webster's Bible Translation
A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD my strength, who teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight;

World English Bible
Blessed be Yahweh, my rock, who teaches my hands to war, and my fingers to battle:

Young's Literal Translation
By David. Blessed is Jehovah my rock, who is teaching My hands for war, my fingers for battle.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

144:1-8 When men become eminent for things as to which they have had few advantages, they should be more deeply sensible that God has been their Teacher. Happy those to whom the Lord gives that noblest victory, conquest and dominion over their own spirits. A prayer for further mercy is fitly begun with a thanksgiving for former mercy. There was a special power of God, inclining the people of Israel to be subject to David; it was typical of the bringing souls into subjection to the Lord Jesus. Man's days have little substance, considering how many thoughts and cares of a never-dying soul are employed about a poor dying body. Man's life is as a shadow that passes away. In their highest earthly exaltation, believers will recollect how mean, sinful, and vile they are in themselves; thus they will be preserved from self-importance and presumption. God's time to help his people is, when they are sinking, and all other helps fail.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 1. - Blessed be the Lord my strength; or, "my rock" (comp. Psalm 18:2, 46; Psalm 31:3; Psalm 62:7, etc.). Which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight (comp. Psalm 18:34).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Blessed be the Lord my strength,.... The author and giver of his natural strength of body, and of the fortitude of his mind, and of all the spiritual strength he had, to exercise grace, to bear up under afflictions and trials, to perform duty, and withstand enemies. It may be applied to Christ, the antitype of David, the man of God's right hand, he has made strong for himself. It may be rendered, "my rock" (c); to whom the psalmist fled for shelter, when in distress and overwhelmed; and on whom he built his faith, and hope of eternal salvation, as well as depended on him for all supplies of grace and strength, and for help and succour in all times of need. The Septuagint, Vulgate Latin, Ethiopic, and Arabic versions, render it, "my God": and so the word "rock" is used for God, Deuteronomy 32:30;

which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight; he took him from being a shepherd, and made him a soldier; and from being the leader of a flock of sheep, to be a general of armies; and all his military skill in marshalling of troops, in leading them on to battle, and bringing them off as well as all his courage and success, were from the Lord: he whose hands and fingers had been used to the shepherd's crook, and to the handling of the harp and lyre, were taught how to handle the sword, the bow, the shield, and spear. God is a man of war himself; and he teaches the art of war, as he does husbandry and other things; see Exodus 15:3; and so the Lord furnishes his people, who are here in a militant state, with spiritual armour, to fight against their spiritual enemies; he teaches them how to put it on, and directs them how to make use of every piece of it; as well as gives them boldness to face their enemies, and victory over them.

(c) "rupes mea", Montanus, Tigurine version, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, &c. so Ainsworth.

The Treasury of David

1 Blessed be the Lord my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to right;

2 My goodness, and my fortress; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and he in whom I trust; who subdueth my people under me.

Psalm 144:1

"Blessed be the Lord my strength." He cannot delay the utterance of his gratitude, he bursts at once into a loud note of praise. His best word is given to his best friend - "Blessed be Jehovah." When the heart is in a right state it must praise God, it cannot be restrained; its utterances leap forth as waters forcing their way from a living spring. With all his strength David blesses the God of his strength. We ought not to receive so great a boon as strength to resist evil, to defend truth, and to conquer error, without knowing who gave it to us, and rendering to him the glory of it. Not only does Jehovah give strength to his saints, but he is their strength. The strength is made theirs because God is theirs. God is full of power, and he becomes the power of those who trust him. In him our great strength lieth, and to him be blessings more than we are able to utter. It may be read, "Mg Rock," but this hardly so well consorts with the following words, "Which teacheth my hands to war and my fingers to fight." The word rock is the Hebrew way of expressing strength, the grand old language is full of such suggestive symbols. The Psalmist in the second part of the verse sets forth the Lord as teacher in the arts of war. If we have strength we are not much the better unless we have skill also. Untrained force is often an injury to the man who possesses it, and it even becomes a danger to those who are round about him; and therefore the Psalmist blesses the Lord as much for teaching as for strength. Let us also bless Jehovah if he has in anything made us efficient. The tuition mentioned was very practical, it was not so much of the brain as of the hands and fingers; for these were the members most needful for conflict. Men with little scholastic education should be grateful for deftness and skill in their handicrafts. To a fighting man the education of the hands is of far more value than mere book-learning could ever be; he who has to use a sling or a bow needs suitable training, quite as much as a scientific man or a classical professor. Men are too apt to fancy that an artisan's efficiency is to be ascribed to himself; but this is a popular fallacy. A clergyman may be supposed to be taught of God, but people do not allow this to be true of weavers or workers in brass; yet these callings are specially mentioned in the Bible as having been taught to holy women and earnest men when the tabernacle was set up at the first. All wisdom and skill are from the Lord, and for them he deserves to be gratefully extolled. This teaching extends to the smallest members of our frame: the Lord teaches fingers as well as hands; indeed, it sometimes happens that if the finger is not well trained the whole hand is incapable.

David was called to be a man of war, and he was eminently successful in his battles; be does not trace this to his good generalship or valour, but to his being taught and strengthened for the war and the fight. If the Lord deigns to have a hand in such unspiritual work as fighting, surely he will help us to proclaim the gospel and win souls; and then we will bless his name with even greater intensity of heart. We will be pupils, and he shall be our Master, and if we ever accomplish anything we will give our instructor hearty blessing.

This verse is full of personality; it is mercy shown to David himself which is the subject of grateful song. It has also a presentness about it; for Jehovah is now his strength, and is still teaching him; we ought to make a point of presenting praise while yet the blessing is on the wing. The verse is also pre-eminently practical, and full of the actual life of every day; for David's days were spent in camps and conflicts. Some of us who are grievously tormented with rheumatism might cry, "Blessed be the Lord, my Comforter, who teacheth my knees to bear in patience, and my feet to endure in resignation"; others who are on the look out to help young converts might say, "Blessed be God who teaches my eyes to see wounded souls, and my lips to cheer them"; but David has his own peculiar help from God, and praises him accordingly. This tends to make the harmony of heaven perfect when all the singers take their parts; if we all followed the same score, the music would not be so full and rich.

Psalm 144:2

Now our royal poet multiplies metaphors to extol his God. "My goodness, and my fortress." The word for goodness signifies mercy. Whoever we may be, and wherever we may be, we need mercy such as can only be found in the infinite God. It is all of mercy that he is any of the other good things to us, so that this is a highly comprehensive title. O how truly has the Lord been mercy to many of us in a thousand ways! He is goodness itself, and he has been unbounded goodness to us. We have no goodness of our own, but the Lord has become goodness to us. So is he himself also our fortress and safe abode: in him we dwell as behind impregnable ramparts and immovable bastions. We cannot be driven out, or starved out; for our fortress is prepared for a siege; it is stored with abundance of food, and a well of living water is within it. Kings usually think much of their fenced cities, but King David relies upon his God, who is more to him than fortresses could have been. "My high tower, and my deliverer." As from a lofty watch-tower the believer, trusting in the Lord, looks down upon his enemies. They cannot reach him in his elevated position; he is out of bow-shot; he is beyond their scaling ladders; he dwells on high. Nor is this all; for Jehovah is our Deliverer as well as our Defender. These different figures set forth the varied benefits which come to us from our Lord. He is every good thing which we can need for this world or the next. He not only places us out of harm's way full often, but when we must be exposed, he comes to our rescue, he raises the siege, routs the foe, and sets us in joyous liberty. "My shield, and he in whom I trust." When the warrior rushes on his adversary, he bears his targe upon his arm, and thrusts death aside; thus doth the believer oppose the Lord to the blows of the enemy, and finds himself secure from harm. For this and a thousand other reasons our trust rests in our God for everything; he never fails us, and we feel boundless confidence in him. "Who subdueth my people under me." He keeps my natural subjects subject, and my conquered subjects peaceful under my sway. Men who rule others should thank God if they succeed in the task. Such strange creatures are human beings, that if a number of them are kept in peaceful association under the leadership of any one of the Lord's servants, he is bound to bless God every day for the wonderful fact. The victories of peace are as much worthy of joyful gratitude as the victories of war. Leaders in the Christian church cannot maintain their position except as the Lord preserves to them the mighty influence which ensures obedience and evokes enthusiastic loyalty. For every particle of influence for good which we may possess let us magnify the name of the Lord.

Thus has David blessed Jehovah for blessing him. How many times he has appropriated the Lord by that little word My! Each time he grasps the Lord, he adores and blesses him; for the one word Blessed runs through all the passage like a golden thread. He began by acknowledging that his strength for fighting foreign enemies was of the Lord, and he concluded by ascribing his domestic peace to the same source. All round as a king he saw himself to be surrounded by the King of kings, to whom he bowed in lowly homage, doing suit and service on bended knee, with grateful heart admitting that he owned everything to the Rock of his salvation.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary


Ps 144:1-15. David's praise of God as his all-sufficient help is enhanced by a recognition of the intrinsic worthlessness of man. Confidently imploring God's interposition against his enemies, he breaks forth into praise and joyful anticipations of the prosperity of his kingdom, when freed from vain and wicked men.

Psalm 144:1 Additional Commentaries
Blessed Be the Lord, My Rock
1A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD, my rock, Who trains my hands for war, And my fingers for battle; 2My lovingkindness and my fortress, My stronghold and my deliverer, My shield and He in whom I take refuge, Who subdues my people under me.…
Cross References
Numbers 1:22
From the descendants of Simeon: All the men twenty years old or more who were able to serve in the army were counted and listed by name, one by one, according to the records of their clans and families.

2 Samuel 22:35
He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

Psalm 18:2
The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Psalm 18:34
He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
Treasury of Scripture

Blessed be the LORD my strength which teaches my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:

A Psalm of David. Calmet and others think that this Psalm was composed by David after the death of Absalom; and from a collation of it with

my strength. Heb. my rock

Psalm 18:2,31 The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my …

Psalm 71:3 Be you my strong habitation, whereunto I may continually resort: …

Psalm 95:1 O come, let us sing to the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the …

Deuteronomy 32:30,31 How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, …

Isaiah 26:4 Trust you in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength:

Isaiah 45:24 Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: …


Psalm 18:34 He teaches my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken by my arms.

Psalm 44:3,4 For they got not the land in possession by their own sword, neither …

Psalm 60:12 Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread …

2 Samuel 22:35 He teaches my hands to war; so that a bow of steel is broken by my arms.

2 Corinthians 10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through …

Ephesians 6:10,11 Finally, my brothers, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might…

to war. or, to the war, etc.

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