Psalm 94:18
When I said, My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O LORD, held me up.
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Psalm 94:18. When I said, My foot slippeth — I am now upon the point of falling into mischief and utter destruction; thy mercy, O Lord, held me up — A merciful, gracious, and powerful hand was immediately stretched out to support my steps, and establish my goings. Observe, reader, we are beholden, not only to God’s power but to his pity, for spiritual supports, and we are then prepared to receive those supports, when we are sensible of our own weakness and inability to stand by our own strength, and come to God to acknowledge it, and to tell him how our foot slippeth.

94:12-23 That man is blessed, who, under the chastening of the Lord, is taught his will and his truths, from his holy word, and by the Holy Spirit. He should see mercy through his sufferings. There is a rest remaining for the people of God after the days of their adversity, which shall not last always. He that sends the trouble, will send the rest. The psalmist found succour and relief only in the Lord, when all earthly friends failed. We are beholden, not only to God's power, but to his pity, for spiritual supports; and if we have been kept from falling into sin, or shrinking from our duty, we should give him the glory, and encourage our brethren. The psalmist had many troubled thoughts concerning the case he was in, concerning the course he should take, and what was likely to be the end of it. The indulgence of such contrivances and fears, adds to care and distrust, and renders our views more gloomy and confused. Good men sometimes have perplexed and distressed thoughts concerning God. But let them look to the great and precious promises of the gospel. The world's comforts give little delight to the soul, when hurried with melancholy thoughts; but God's comforts bring that peace and pleasure which the smiles of the world cannot give, and which the frowns of the world cannot take away. God is his people's Refuge, to whom they may flee, in whom they are safe, and may be secure. And he will reckon with the wicked. A man cannot be more miserable than his own wickedness will make him, if the Lord visit it upon him.When I said, My foot slippeth - I can no longer stand. My strength is gone; and I must sink into the grave. The original here is, "If I say, My foot slippeth," etc. The statement is general; that if at any time he had been, or should be, in such circumstances, then God would interpose. The general remark, however, is founded on his interposition on this particular occasion. His aid was then so marked and timely, that he felt that he could make the declaration general in regard to his whole life - to all circumstances in which he would ever be placed.

Thy mercy, O Lord, held me up - By thy merciful interposition thou didst keep me from falling. It was strength put forth as the expression of "mercy;" not strength to which he had any claim. How often in life may we say this of ourselves, that when just ready to sink; when our strength was almost gone; when a little severer pressure would have brought us to the grave, God by his mercy and his power interposed and saved us! Every such act of mercy - every new interposition in this manner - is a new gift of life, and lays us under obligation as if we had been just created, for it is just so much more of life given us by God.

17-19. a fact fully confirmed by his past experience.

dwelt in silence—as in the grave (Ps 31:17).

My foot slippeth; I am now upon the point of falling into mischief and utter destruction.

When I said, my foot slippeth,.... There is no ground for me to stand upon; all is over with me; there is no hope nor help for me; I am just falling into ruin and destruction: such will be the desperate case of the church, at the time before referred to:

thy mercy, O Lord, held me up; the extremity of his people is the Lord's opportunity; then is his set time to arise, and have mercy on them; then mercy steps in, lays a solid ground and foundation for hope, and holds up in its arms a sinking people, and revives a dying cause.

When I said, {l} My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O LORD, held me up.

(l) When I thought there was no way but death.

18. The A.V. misses the picturesqueness of the tenses. When I said, My foot hath slipped, thy lovingkindness, Jehovah, was supporting me. I gave myself up for lost, but the right hand of love had hold of me all the time. Cp. Psalm 38:16; Psalm 18:35.

Verse 18. - When I said, My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O Lord, held me up. Another respect in which the godly, even though suffering affliction, are blessed. God upholds their tottering feet, and, when they are in danger, keeps them from falling. Psalm 94:18In the fifth strophe the poet celebrates the praise of the Lord as his sole, but also trusty and most consolatory help. The meaning of the question in Psalm 94:16 is, that there is no man who would rise and succour him in the conflict with the evil-doers; ל as in Exodus 14:25; Judges 6:31, and עם (without נלחם or the like) in the sense of contra, as in Psalm 55:19, cf. 2 Chronicles 20:6. God alone is his help. He alone has rescued him from death. היה is to be supplied to לוּלי: if He had not been, or: if He were not; and the apodosis is: then very little would have been wanting, then it would soon have come to this, that his soul would have taken up its abode, etc.; cf. on the construction Psalm 119:92; Psalm 124:1-5; Isaiah 1:9, and on כּמעט with the praet. Psalm 73:2; Psalm 119:87; Genesis 26:10 (on the other hand with the fut. Psalm 81:15). דּוּמה is, as in Psalm 115:17, the silence of the grave and of Hades; here it is the object to שׁכנה, as in Psalm 37:3, Proverbs 8:12, and frequently. When he appears to himself already as one that has fallen, God's mercy holds him up. And when thoughts, viz., sad and fearful thoughts, are multiplied within him, God's comforts delight him, viz., the encouragement of His word and the inward utterances of His Spirit. שׁרעפּים, as in Psalm 139:23, is equivalent to שעפּים, from שׂעף, סעף, Arab. š‛b, to split, branch off (Psychology, S. 181; tr. p. 214). The plural form ישׁעשׁעוּ, like the plural of the imperative in Isaiah 29:9, has two Pathachs, the second of which is the "independentification" of the Chateph of ישׁעשׁע.
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