Psalm 142:6
Attend unto my cry; for I am brought very low: deliver me from my persecutors; for they are stronger than I.
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Psalm 142:6-7. Attend unto my cry, &c. — O let my importunate cry prevail for some relief; which will come most seasonably in this exceeding great necessity; for I am brought very low — And if thou do not help me I shall quite sink. Deliver me from my persecutors — Either tie their hands, or turn their hearts; break their power, or blast their projects; restrain them, or rescue me. For they are stronger than I — And it will be to thine honour to take part with the weakest. Deliver me from them, or I shall be ruined by them; for I am not yet myself a match for them. Bring my soul out of prison — Not only bring me safe out of this cave, but bring me out of all my perplexities, and set me at perfect liberty; that I may praise thy name — Not that I may enjoy myself and my friends, and live at ease; no, nor that I may defend my country: but that I may praise, glorify, and serve thee; the end this, which we ought to have in view in all our prayers for deliverance out of trouble, or for any other blessing. The righteous shall compass me about — Shall flock to me from all parts, partly to see such a miracle of the divine power and mercy; and partly to rejoice and bless God with me and for me, and for all the benefits which they expect from my government. Observe reader, “this prayer of David was heard and answered; he was delivered from his persecutors, enlarged from his distress, exalted to the throne, and joined by all the tribes of Israel.” And let not us fear, though we be brought very low, and our persecutors, the world, the flesh, and the devil, be too strong for us; but God will deliver us, if we cry earnestly to him, from the bondage of sin and all our enemies, and redeem us from the prison of the grave, that we may join the great assembly before the throne, and there praise him for ever. — Horne.

142:1-7 David's comfort in prayer. - There can be no situation so distressing or dangerous, in which faith will not get comfort from God by prayer. We are apt to show our troubles too much to ourselves, poring upon them, which does us no service; whereas, by showing them to God, we might cast the cares upon him who careth for us, and thereby ease ourselves. Nor should we allow any complaint to ourselves or others, which we cannot make to God. When our spirits are overwhelmed by distress, and filled with discouragement; when we see snares laid for us on every side, while we walk in his way, we may reflect with comfort that the Lord knoweth our path. Those who in sincerity take the Lord for their God, find him all-sufficient, as a Refuge, and as a Portion: every thing else is a refuge of lies, and a portion of no value. In this situation David prayed earnestly to God. We may apply it spiritually; the souls of believers are often straitened by doubts and fears. And it is then their duty and interest to beg of God to set them at liberty, that they may run the way of his commandments. Thus the Lord delivered David from his powerful persecutors, and dealt bountifully with him. Thus he raised the crucified Redeemer to the throne of glory, and made him Head over all things for his church. Thus the convinced sinner cries for help, and is brought to praise the Lord in the company of his redeemed people; and thus all believers will at length be delivered from this evil world, from sin and death, and praise their Saviour for ever.Attend unto my cry - Give ear to me when I cry to thee. Do not turn away and refuse to hear me.

For I am brought very low - I am reduced greatly; I am made very poor. The language would be applicable to one who had been in better circumstances, and who had been brought down to a condition of danger, of poverty, of want. It is language which is commonly applied to poverty.

Deliver me from my persecutors - Saul and his followers.

For they are stronger than I-- More in number; better armed; better suited for battle.

6. (Compare Ps 17:1). No text from Poole on this verse.

Attend unto my cry,.... His prayer and supplication for help in his distress, which he desires might be hearkened unto and answered;

for I am brought very low; in his spirit, in the exercise of grace, being in great affliction, and reduced to the utmost extremity, weakened, impoverished, and exhausted; wanting both men and money to assist him, Psalm 79:8;

deliver me from my persecutors; Saul and his men, who were in pursuit of him with great warmth and eagerness;

for they are stronger than I; more in number, and greater in strength; Saul had with him three thousand chosen men out of all Israel, ablebodied men, and expert in war; veteran troops, and in high spirits, with their king at the head of them; David had about six hundred men, and these poor mean creatures, such as were in distress, in debt, and discontented, and in want of provisions, and dispirited; see 1 Samuel 22:2. So the spiritual enemies of the Lord's people are stronger than they, Jeremiah 31:11.

Attend unto my cry; for I am brought very low: deliver me from my persecutors; for they are stronger than I.
6. A mosaic of phrases which occur elsewhere. Cp. Psalm 17:1; Psalm 79:8; Psalm 7:1; Psalm 31:15; Psalm 18:17.

Verse 6. - Attend unto my cry; for I am brought very low (comp. Psalm 79:8; and see also Deuteronomy 28:43; Judges 6:6; Psalm 116:6). In the cave of Adullam David had but four hundred outlaws to defend him against Saul, who was at the head of all the thousands of Israel (1 Samuel 22:2). Deliver me from my persecutors. Saul, Doeg, the Ziphites, and the armed bands with whom Saul "hunted David in the mountains" (1 Samuel 26:20). For they are stronger than I; or, "too strong for me." Psalm 142:6His request now ascends all the more confident of being answered, and becomes calm, being well-grounded in his feebleness and the superiority of his enemies, and aiming at the glorifying of the divine Name. In Psalm 142:7 רנּתי calls to mind Psalm 17:1; the first confirmation, Psalm 79:8, and the second, Psalm 18:18. But this is the only passage in the whole Psalter where the poet designates the "distress" in which he finds himself as a prison (מסגּר). V. 8b brings the whole congregation of the righteous in in the praising of the divine Name. The poet therefore does not after all find himself so absolutely alone, as it might seem according to Psalm 142:5. He is far from regarding himself as the only righteous person. He is only a member of a community or church whose destiny is interwoven with his own, and which will glory in his deliverance as its own; for "if one member is honoured, all the members rejoice with it" (1 Corinthians 12:26). We understand the differently interpreted יכתּירוּ after this "rejoicing with" (συγχαίρει). The lxx, Syriac, and Aquilaz render: the righteous wait for me; but to wait is כּתּר and not הכתּיר. The modern versions, on the other hand, almost universally, like Luther after Felix Pratensis, render: the righteous shall surround me (flock about me), in connection with which, as Hengstenberg observes, בּי denotes the tender sympathy they fell with him: crowding closely upon me. But there is no instance of a verb of surrounding (אפף, סבב, סבב, עוּד, עטר, הקּיף) taking בּ; the accusative stands with הכתּיר in Habakkuk 1:4, and כּתּר in Psalm 22:13, in the signification cingere. Symmachus (although erroneously rendering: τὸ ὄνομά σου στεφανώσονται δίκαιοι), Jerome (in me coronabuntur justi), Parchon, Aben-Ezra, Coccejus, and others, rightly take יכתּירוּ as a denominative from כּתר, to put on a crown or to crown (cf. Proverbs 14:18): on account of me the righteous shall adorn themselves as with crowns, i.e., shall triumph, that Thou dealest bountifully with me (an echo of Psalm 13:6). According to passages like Psalm 64:11; Psalm 40:17, one might have expected בּו instead of בּי. But the close of Psalm 22 (Psalm 22:23.), cf. Psalm 140:12., shows that בי is also admissible. The very fact that David contemplates his own destiny and the destiny of his foes in a not merely ideal but foreordainedly causal connection with the general end of the two powers that stand opposed to one another in the world, belongs to the characteristic impress of the Psalms of David that come from the time of Saul's persecution.
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