|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
22:11-21 In these verses we have Christ suffering, and Christ praying; by which we are directed to look for crosses, and to look up to God under them. The very manner of Christ's death is described, though not in use among the Jews. They pierced his hands and his feet, which were nailed to the accursed tree, and his whole body was left so to hang as to suffer the most severe pain and torture. His natural force failed, being wasted by the fire of Divine wrath preying upon his spirits. Who then can stand before God's anger? or who knows the power of it? The life of the sinner was forfeited, and the life of the Sacrifice must be the ransom for it. Our Lord Jesus was stripped, when he was crucified, that he might clothe us with the robe of his righteousness. Thus it was written, therefore thus it behoved Christ to suffer. Let all this confirm our faith in him as the true Messiah, and excite our love to him as the best of friends, who loved us, and suffered all this for us. Christ in his agony prayed, prayed earnestly, prayed that the cup might pass from him. When we cannot rejoice in God as our song, yet let us stay ourselves upon him as our strength; and take the comfort of spiritual supports, when we cannot have spiritual delights. He prays to be delivered from the Divine wrath. He that has delivered, doth deliver, and will do so. We should think upon the sufferings and resurrection of Christ, till we feel in our souls the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings.
Verse 11. - Be not far from me. The considerations dwelt upon in vers. 3-5, and again in veto. 9, 10, have removed the sense of desertion expressed in vex. 1; and the Sufferer can now confidently call on God to help him. "Be not far from me," he says, for trouble is near. The time is come when aid is most urgently required. For there is none to help; literally, not a helper. David himself had never been in such straits. He had always had friends and followers. Under Saul's persecution he had a friend in Jonathan; he was supported by his father and his brethren (1 Samuel 22:1); in a short time he found himself at the head of four hundred (1 Samuel 22:2), and then of six hundred men (1 Samuel 25:13). In Absalom's rebellion there remained faithful to him the priestly tribe (2 Samuel 15:24) and the Gibborim (2 Samuel 15:18), and others to the number of some thousands (2 Samuel 18:4). But he whom David prefigured, his Antitype, was desexed, was alone - "All the disciples forsook him and fled" (Matthew 26:56) - he was truly one that "had no helper."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Be not far from me,.... Who had been so near unto him, as to take him out of the womb, and to take the care of him ever since; this is to be understood not with respect to the omnipresence of God, who is everywhere, and is not far from any of us; but of his presence, which was now withdrawn from Christ, and he was filled with a sense of divine wrath, and with sorrow and distress; and also of his powerful and assisting presence which he had promised, and Christ expected, and believed he should have, as he had: the reasons for it follow:
for trouble is near; Satan was marching towards him with his principalities and powers, to attack him in the garden and on the cross; Judas, one of his own disciples, was at hand to betray him; a multitude with swords and staves were about to seize him; the sins and chastisement of his people were just going to be laid upon him; the sword of justice was awaked against him, ready to give the blow; the hour of death was near, he was brought to the dust of it, as in Psalm 22:15. A second reason is given,
for there is none to help; none among his disciples: one of them was to betray him, another to deny him, and all to forsake him and flee from him, as they did; nor any among the angels in heaven; for though they ministered to him in the wilderness, and strengthened him in the garden, there were none near him on the cross, that it might be manifest that salvation was wrought out alone by him, Isaiah 63:5; and, indeed, if any of these had been willing to have helped him, it was not in their power to do it, none but God could; and therefore he applies to him, who had promised and was as good as his word, Isaiah 49:8.
The Treasury of David
11 Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help
12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.
13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint, my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
19 But be not thou far from me, O Lord: O my strength, haste thee to help me.
20 Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.
21 Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.
The crucified Son of David continues to pour out his complaint and prayer. We need much grace that while reading we may have fellowship with his sufferings. May the blessed Spirit conduct us into a most clear and affecting sight of our Redeemer's woes.
"Be not far from me." This is the petition for which he has been using such varied and powerful pleas. His great woe was that God had forsaken him, his great prayer is that he would be near him. A lively sense of the divine presence is a mighty stay to the heart in times of distress. "For trouble is near; for there is none to help." There are two "fors," as though faith gave a double knock at mercy's gate; that is a powerful prayer which is full of holy reasons and thoughtful arguments. The nearness of trouble is a weighty motive for divine help; this moves our heavenly Father's heart, and brings down his helping hand. It is his glory to be our very present help in trouble. Our Substitute had trouble in his inmost heart, for he said, "the waters have come in, even unto my soul;" well might he cry, "be not far from me." The absence of all other helpers is another telling plea. In our Lord's case none either could or would help him, it was needful that he should tread the winepress alone; yet was it a sore aggravation to find that all his disciples had forsaken him, and lover and friend were put far from him. There is an awfulness about absolute friendlessness which is crushing to the human mind, for man was not made to be alone, and is like a dismembered limb when he has to endure heart-loneliness.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. From this statement of reasons for the appeal, he renews it, pleading his double extremity, the nearness of trouble, and the absence of a helper.
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