|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
38:1-11 Nothing will disquiet the heart of a good man so much as the sense of God's anger. The way to keep the heart quiet, is to keep ourselves in the love of God. But a sense of guilt is too heavy to bear; and would sink men into despair and ruin, unless removed by the pardoning mercy of God. If there were not sin in our souls, there would be no pain in our bones, no illness in our bodies. The guilt of sin is a burden to the whole creation, which groans under it. It will be a burden to the sinners themselves, when they are heavy-laden under it, or a burden of ruin, when it sinks them to hell. When we perceive our true condition, the Good Physician will be valued, sought, and obeyed. Yet many let their wounds rankle, because they delay to go to their merciful Friend. When, at any time, we are distempered in our bodies, we ought to remember how God has been dishonoured in and by our bodies. The groanings which cannot be uttered, are not hid from Him that searches the heart, and knows the mind of the Spirit. David, in his troubles, was a type of Christ in his agonies, of Christ on his cross, suffering and deserted.
Verses 9-14. - In this second strophe the physical are subordinated to the moral sufferings; the former being touched on in one verse only (ver. 10), the latter occupying the rest of the section. Of these the most tangible are the pain caused by the desertion of his "lovers," "friends," and "kinsmen" (ver. 11), and the alarm arising from the action taken, simultaneously, by his ill wishers and adversaries (ver. 12). These afflictions have reduced him to a condition of silence - almost of apathy, such as is described in vers. 13, 14. Verse 9. - Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning is not hid from thee. This has been called "the first indication of hope in this psalm;" but there is a gleam of hope in the prayer of ver. 1. Hope, however, does here show itself more plainly than before. The psalmist has laid "all his desire" before God, and feels that God is weighing and considering it. He has also opened to him "all his groanings" - uttered freely all his complaint. This he could have been led to do only from a conviction that God was not irrevocably offended with him, but might, by repentance, confession, and earnest striving after amendment (ver. 20), be reconciled, and induced to become his Defence (ver. 15) and his Salvation (ver. 22).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Lord, all my desire is before thee,.... To be delivered from his afflictions, to have a discovery and application of pardoning grace, and to have communion with his God: the desire of his soul was unto these things; and it was some satisfaction to him that it was before the Lord, and known unto him, before whom all things are naked and open;
and my groaning is not hid from thee; under the weight of his affliction, the burden of his sin, and which he expressed in prayer to the Lord, and which is often done with groanings which cannot be uttered: but even these are known and understood by the Lord.
The Treasury of David
9 Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning is not hid from thee.
"Lord, all my desire is before thee." If unuttered, yet perceived. Blessed be God, he reads the longings of our hearts; nothing can be hidden from him; what we cannot tell to him he perfectly understands. The Psalmist is conscious that he has not exaggerated, and therefore appeals to heaven for a confirmation of his words. The good Physician understands the symptoms of our disease and sees the hidden evil which they reveal, hence our case is safe in his hands. "And my groaning is not hid from thee."
"He takes the meaning of our tears,
The language of our groans."
Sorrow and anguish hide themselves from the observation of man, but God spieth them out. None more lonely than the broken-hearted sinner, yet hath he the Lord for his companion.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
9. That God can hear (Ro 8:26).
Psalm 38:9 Parallel Commentaries
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