Psalm 22:13
They gaped on me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(13) Ravening.—Literally, tearing in pieces. (Comp. Lamentations 2:15-16; Lamentations 3:10.)

Roaring.—Comp. Amos 3:4.

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.They gaped upon me with their mouths - Margin, as in Hebrew, "opened their mouths against me." That is, they opened their mouths wide as if they would devour me, as a lion does when he seizes upon his prey. In Psalm 22:7 they are represented as "opening" the mouth for another purpose - that of derision or scorn; here they are described as if they were fierce and wild beasts ready to fall upon their prey.

As a ravening and roaring lion - The word "ravening" means "voraciously devouring," and the allusion in the Hebrew word is to the lion as he tears his prey - טרף ṭâraph - rending it in pieces to devour it. All this is designed to denote the greediness with which the enemies of the Redeemer sought his life.

12, 13. His enemies, with the vigor of bulls and rapacity of lions, surround him, eagerly seeking his ruin. The force of both figures is greater without the use of any particle denoting comparison. Partly to affright me, and principally to tear and devour me, as the following metaphor explains it. Otherwise it might be understood of their crying out with loud and earnest voices, that he might be condemned and put to death. They gaped upon me with their mouths,.... Either by way of derision and contempt, Job 16:10; or belching out blasphemy against him, or rather, with the greatest vehemency, crying out "Crucify him, crucify him", Luke 23:21; and this they did

as a ravening and roaring lion, when it has got its prey and rejoices, Amos 3:4; and being in such hands, and encompassed about with such enemies, as Christ was in the garden, in the high priest's hall, and in Pilate's judgment hall, is a third reason or argument used by him with God his Father, to be near to him and not far from him.

They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
13. They gaped &c.] R.V., they gape upon me with their mouths (Lamentations 2:16; Lamentations 3:46); like a lion roaring as it prepares to spring upon its prey (Psalm 7:2).Verse 13. - They gaped upon me with their mouths. One metaphor is superseded by another. Fierce and threatening as bulls, the adversaries are ravenous as lions. They "gape with their mouths," eager to devour, ready to spring on the prey and crush it in their monstrous jaws. As a ravening and a roaring lion. The tumult and noise made by those who demanded our Lord's death are noted by the evangelist, περισσῶς ἔκραζον - θόρυβος γίνεται (Matthew 27:23, 24). (Heb.: 22:7-9)The sufferer complains of the greatness of his reproach, in order to move Jahve, who is Himself involved therein, to send him speedy succour. Notwithstanding his cry for help, he is in the deepest affliction without rescue. Every word of Psalm 22:7 is echoed in the second part of the Book of Isaiah. There, as here, Israel is called a worm, Isaiah 41:14; there all these traits of suffering are found in the picture of the Servant of God, Isaiah 49:7; Isaiah 53:3, cf. Isaiah 50:6, and especially Isaiah 52:14 "so marred was His appearance, that He no longer looked like a man." תּולעת is more particularly the kermes, or cochineal (vermiculus, whence color vermiculi, vermeil, vermiglio); but the point of comparison in the present instance is not the blood-red appearance, but the suffering so utterly defenceless and even ignominious. עם is gen. subj., like גּוי, Isaiah 49:7. Jerome well renders the ἐξουθένωμα λαοῦ of the lxx by abjectio (Tertullian: nullificamen) plebis, not populi. The ἐξεμυκτήρισάν με, by which the lxx translates ילעיגו לי, is used by Luke, Luke 23:35, cf. Luke 16:14, in the history of the Passion; fulfilment and prediction so exactly coincide, that no more adequate expressions can be found in writing the gospel history than those presented by prophecy. In הפטיר בּשׂפה, what appears in other instances as the object of the action (to open the mouth wide, diducere labia), is regarded as the means of its execution; so that the verbal notion being rendered complete has its object in itself: to make an opening with the mouth, cf. פּער בּפה, Job 16:10, נתן בּקול Psalm 68:34; Ges. 138, 1, rem. 3. The shaking of the head is, as in Psalm 109:25, cf. Psalm 44:15; Psalm 64:9, a gesture of surprise and astonishment at something unexpected and strange, not a προσνεύειν approving the injury of another, although נוּע, נוּד, נוּט, νεύ-ω, nu-t-o, nic-to, neigen, nicken, all form one family of roots. In Psalm 22:9 the words of the mockers follow without לאמר. גּל is not the 3 praet. (lxx, cf. Matthew 27:43) like אור, בּושׁ; it is not only in Piel (Jeremiah 11:20; Jeremiah 20:12, where גּלּיתי equals גּלּלתּי, Ew. 121, a) that it is transitive, but even in Kal; nor is it inf. absol. in the sense of the imperative (Hitz., Bttch.), although this infinitive form is found, but always only as an inf. intens. (Numbers 23:25; Ruth 2:16, cf. Isaiah 24:19); but, in accordance with the parallels Psalm 37:5 (where it is written גּול), Proverbs 16:3, cf. Psalm 55:23; 1 Peter 5:7, it is imperat.: roll, viz., thy doing and thy suffering to Jahve, i.e., commit it to Him. The mockers call out this גּל to the sufferer, and the rest they say of him with malicious looks askance. כּי in the mouth of the foes is not confirmatory as in Psalm 18:20, but a conditional ἐάν (in case, provided that).
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