Psalm 6:7
Mine eye is consumed because of grief; it waxeth old because of all mine enemies.
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(7) Consumedi.e., sunken; literally, fallen away. The LXX. use the same word employed to render vexed in Psalm 6:2. Grief has brought the signs of premature age (Job 17:7; Psalm 31:9, and Note there). (See Homer’s Odyssey, xix. 360, “Quickly do mortals grow old from trouble.”)

6:1-7 These verses speak the language of a heart truly humbled, of a broken and contrite spirit under great afflictions, sent to awaken conscience and mortify corruption. Sickness brought sin to his remembrance, and he looked upon it as a token of God's displeasure against him. The affliction of his body will be tolerable, if he has comfort in his soul. Christ's sorest complaint, in his sufferings, was of the trouble of his soul, and the want of his Father's smiles. Every page of Scripture proclaims the fact, that salvation is only of the Lord. Man is a sinner, his case can only be reached by mercy; and never is mercy more illustrious than in restoring backsliders. With good reason we may pray, that if it be the will of God, and he has any further work for us or our friends to do in this world, he will yet spare us or them to serve him. To depart and be with Christ is happiest for the saints; but for them to abide in the flesh is more profitable for the church.Mine eye is consumed - The word here rendered "consumed" - עשׁשׁ ‛âshêsh - means properly to fall in, to fall away, and is applied here to the "eye" as pining or wasting away from care, anxiety, and sorrow. Tears were poured forth from the eye, and it seemed to be exhausting itself in this manner. The meaning is, that it had grown "dim," or that its sight began to fail, like that of an old man, on account of his troubles. Many have understood the word here rendered "eye" as referring to the "countenance;" but it is doubtful whether the word ever has this signification; and at any rate the common signification, referring it to the "eye," best suits this connection.

It waxeth old - It seems to grow old; it experiences the effects commonly produced by age in blunting the power of vision. This is not an uncommon effect of grief and sadness. Even while I am writing this I am called in my pastoral visitations to attend on a young lady lying on a bed of languishing, and probably of death, one of whose symptoms is a quite diminished, and indeed almost total loss of vision, as the effect of trouble and disease.

Because of all mine enemies - From the trouble which they have brought upon me. The reference here, according to the interpretation proposed of the psalm, is to Absalom and those who were associated with him. Their conduct had been such as to bring upon David this overwhelming tide of sorrows.

7. consumed—or, "has failed," denoting general debility (Ps 13:3; 38:10).

waxeth old—or, "dim."

grief—mingled with indignation.

Consumed; or, grown dim or dull, through plenty of salt tears which I shed; or through the decay of my spirits.

Because of grief, i.e. my grief arising from mine enemies, as the next clause interprets it, and from the consideration of their multitude, and rage, and falseness.

Mine eye is consumed because of grief,.... Either by reason of the affliction he laboured under, which could not he joyous, but grievous; or because, of the sin that was in him, and those that he had committed, which were grieving to him; or through the sins of other professors of religion, or profane sinners, whom he beheld with grief of heart and weeping eyes: the word (f) used signifies anger and indignation, and sorrow arising from thence, and may denote either indignation in himself at his enemies, who were rejoicing at his calamities; or the sense he had of the anger of God, and his hot displeasure, which he feared he was rebuking and chastening him with; and now his heart being filled with grief on one or other of these accounts, or all of them, vented itself in floods of tears, which hurt the visive faculty; for through much weeping the eye is weakened and becomes dim; and through a multitude of tears, and a long continuance of them, it fails; see Job 17:7;

it waxeth old because of all mine enemies; saints have many enemies, sin, Satan, and the world; and these are very oppressive ones, as the word (g) here signifies; such as beset them about, straiten them on all hands, and press them sore; and they must be pressed down by them, were it not that he that is in them is greater than he that is in the world; and David's enemies gave him so much trouble, and caused him to shed such plenty of tears, that his eye waxed old, was shrunk up, and beset with wrinkles, the signs of old age; or it was removed out of its place, as the word is rendered in Job 18:4; or the sight was removed from that, it was gone from him, Psalm 38:10.

(f) "prae ira", Pagninus; "prae indignatione", Montanus, Musculus; "ex indignatione", Piscator. (g) "angustiatores", Montanus; "angustiis afficientes me", Vatablus; "oppressores meos", Junius & Tremellius, Gejerus.

Mine eye is consumed because of grief; it waxeth old because of all mine enemies.
7. Mine eye Is wasted away because of provocation;

It is waxed old because of all mine adversaries.

With the first clause comp. Psalm 31:9. The look of the eye is a sure indication of the state of health, mental and bodily. The word rendered adversaries means literally them that distress me. Cp. Psalm 7:4; Psalm 7:6; and the cognate words in Psalm 3:1, Psalm 4:1.

Verse 7. - Mine eye is consumed because of grief; or, mine eye is wasted away because of provocation. The eye falls in, becomes dull, and, as it were, "wastes away" through long-continued grief (comp. Psalm 31:9). The kind of grief expressed by the word ka'as (כַעַס) is "that which arises from provocation or spiteful treatment" (Kay). It waxeth old because of all mine enemies. It becomes dull and heavy and sunken, like the eye of an old man. How often has it not been noted that nothing so much ages a man as grief! Psalm 6:7(Heb.: 6:5-8) God has turned away from him, hence the prayer שׁוּבה, viz., אלי. The tone of שׁוּבה is on the ult., because it is assumed to be read שׁוּבה אדני. The ultima accentuation is intended to secure its distinct pronunciation to the final syllable of שׁובה, which is liable to be drowned and escape notice in connection with the coming together of the two aspirates (vid., on Psalm 3:8). May God turn to him again, rescue (חלּץ from חלץ, which is transitive in Hebr. and Aram., to free, expedire, exuere, Arab. chalaṣa, to be pure, prop. to be loose, free) his soul, in which his affliction has taken deep root, from this affliction, and extend to him salvation on the ground of His mercy towards sinners. He founds this cry for help upon his yearning to be able still longer to praise God, - a happy employ, the possibility of which would be cut off from him if he should die. זכר, as frequently הזכּיר, is used of remembering one with reverence and honour; הודה (from ודה) has the dat. honoris after it. שׁאול, Psalm 6:6, ἅδης (Revelation 20:13), alternates with מות. Such is the name of the grave, the yawning abyss, into which everything mortal descends (from שׁאל equals שׁוּל Arab. sâl, to be loose, relaxed, to hang down, sink down: a sinking in, that which is sunken in,

(Note: The form corresponds to the Arabic form fi‛âlun, which, though originally a verbal abstract, has carried over the passive meaning into the province of the concrete, e.g., kitâb equals maktûb and ilâh, אלוהּ equals ma‛lûh equals ma‛bûd (the feared, revered One).)

a depth). The writers of the Psalms all (which is no small objection against Maccabean Psalms) know only of one single gathering-place of the dead in the depth of the earth, where they indeed live, but it is only a quasi life, because they are secluded from the light of this world and, what is the most lamentable, from the light of God's presence. Hence the Christian can only join in the prayer of v. 6 of this Psalm and similar passages (Psalm 30:10; Psalm 88:11-13; Psalm 115:17; Isaiah 38:18.) so far as he transfers the notion of hades to that of gehenna.

(Note: An adumbration of this relationship of Christianity to the religion of the Old Testament is the relationship of Islam to the religion of the Arab wandering tribes, which is called the "religion of Abraham" (Din Ibrâhim), and knows no life after death; while Islam has taken from the later Judaism and from Christianity the hope of a resurrection and heavenly blessedness.)

In hell there is really no remembrance and no praising of God. David's fear of death as something in itself unhappy, is also, according to its ultimate ground, nothing but the fear of an unhappy death. In these "pains of hell" he is wearied with (בּ as in Psalm 69:4) groaning, and bedews his couch every night with a river of tears. Just as the Hiph. השׂחה signifies to cause to swim from שׂחה to swim, so the Hiph. המסה signifies to dissolve, cause to melt, from מסה (cogn. מסס) to melt. דּמעה, in Arabic a nom. unit. a tear, is in Hebrew a flood of tears.

In Psalm 6:8 עיני does not signify my "appearance" (Numbers 11:7), but, as becomes clear from Psalm 31:10; Psalm 88:10, Job 17:7, "my eye;" the eye reflects the whole state of a man's health. The verb עשׁשׁ appears to be a denominative from עשׁ: to be moth-eaten.

(Note: Reuchlin in his grammatical analysis of the seven Penitential Psalms, which he published in 1512 after his Ll. III de Rudimentis Hebraicis (1506), explains it thus: עשׁשׁה Verminavit. Sic a vermibus dictum qui turbant res claras puras et nitidas, and in the Rudim. p. 412: Turbatus est a furore oculus meus, corrosus et obfuscatus, quasi vitro laternae obductus.)

The signification senescere for the verb עתק is more certain. The closing words בּכל־צוררי (cf. Numbers 10:9 הצּר הצּרר the oppressing oppressor, from the root צר Arab. tsr, to press, squeeze, and especially to bind together, constringere, coartare

(Note: In Arabic ציר dir is the word for a step-mother as the oppressor of the step-children; and צרר dirr, a concubine as the oppressor of her rival.)),

in which the writer indicates, partially at least, the cause of his grief (כּעס, in Job 18:7 כּעשׁ), are as it were the socket into which the following strophe is inserted.

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