Psalm 103:11
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;

King James Bible
For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

American Standard Version
For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is his lovingkindness toward them that fear him.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For according to the height of the heaven above the earth: he hath strengthened his mercy towards them that fear him.

English Revised Version
For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

Webster's Bible Translation
For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy towards them that fear him.

Psalm 103:11 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

In the strophe Psalm 103:1 the poet calls upon his soul to arise to praiseful gratitude for God's justifying, redeeming, and renewing grace. In such soliloquies it is the Ego that speaks, gathering itself up with the spirit, the stronger, more manly part of man (Psychology, S. 104f.; tr. p. 126), or even, because the soul as the spiritual medium of the spirit and of the body represents the whole person of man (Psychology, S. 203; tr. p. 240), the Ego rendering objective in the soul the whole of its own personality. So here in Psalm 103:3 the soul, which is addressed, represents the whole man. The קובים which occurs here is a more choice expression for מעים (מעים): the heart, which is called קרב κατ ̓ ἐξοχήν, the reins, the liver, etc.; for according to the scriptural conception (Psychology, S. 266; tr. p. 313) these organs of the cavities of the breast and abdomen serve not merely for the bodily life, but also the psycho-spiritual life. The summoning בּרכי is repeated per anaphoram. There is nothing the soul of man is so prone to forget as to render thanks that are due, and more especially thanks that are due to God. It therefore needs to be expressly aroused in order that it may not leave the blessing with which God blesses it unacknowledged, and may not forget all His acts performed (גּמל equals גּמר) on it (גּמוּל, ῥῆμα μέσον, e.g., in Psalm 137:8), which are purely deeds of loving-kindness), which is the primal condition and the foundation of all the others, viz., sin-pardoning mercy. The verbs סלח and רפא with a dative of the object denote the bestowment of that which is expressed by the verbal notion. תּחלוּאים (taken from Deuteronomy 29:21, cf. 1 Chronicles 21:19, from חלא equals חלה, root הל, solutum, laxum esse) are not merely bodily diseases, but all kinds of inward and outward sufferings. משּׁחת the lxx renders ἐκ φθορᾶς (from שׁחת, as in Job 17:14); but in this antithesis to life it is more natural to render the "pit" (from שׁוּח) as a name of Hades, as in Psalm 16:10. Just as the soul owes its deliverance from guilt and distress and death to God, so also does it owe to God that with which it is endowed out of the riches of divine love. The verb עטּר, without any such addition as in Psalm 5:13, is "to crown," cf. Psalm 8:6. As is usually the case, it is construed with a double accusative; the crown is as it were woven out of loving-kindness and compassion. The Beth of בּטּוב in Psalm 103:5 instead of the accusative (Psalm 104:28) denotes the means of satisfaction, which is at the same time that which satisfies. עדיך the Targum renders: dies senectutis tuae, whereas in Psalm 32:9 it is ornatus ejus; the Peshto renders: corpus tuum, and in Psalm 32:9 inversely, juventus eorum. These significations, "old age" or "youth," are pure inventions. And since the words are addressed to the soul, עדי cannot also, like כבוד in other instances, be a name of the soul itself (Aben-Ezra, Mendelssohn, Philippsohn, Hengstenberg, and others). We, therefore, with Hitzig, fall back upon the sense of the word in Psalm 32:9, where the lxx renders τάς σιαγόνας αὐτῶν, but here more freely, apparently starting from the primary notion of עדי equals Arabic chadd, the cheek: τὸν ἐμπιπλῶντα ἐν ἀγαθοῖς τὴν ἐπιθυμίαν σου (whereas Saadia's victum tuum is based upon a comparison of the Arabic gdâ, to nourish). The poet tells the soul (i.e., his own person, himself) that God satisfies it with good, so that it as it were gets its cheeks full of it (cf. Psalm 81:11). The comparison כּנּשׁר is, as in Micah 1:16 (cf. Isaiah 40:31), to be referred to the annual moulting of the eagle. Its renewing of its plumage is an emblem of the renovation of his youth by grace. The predicate to נעוּריכי (plural of extension in relation to time) stands first regularly in the sing. fem.

Psalm 103:11 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

as the, etc. Heb. according to the height of heaven

Psalm 36:5 Your mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; and your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.

Psalm 57:10 For your mercy is great to the heavens, and your truth to the clouds.

Psalm 89:2 For I have said, Mercy shall be built up for ever: your faithfulness shall you establish in the very heavens.

Job 22:12 Is not God in the height of heaven? and behold the height of the stars, how high they are!

Proverbs 25:3 The heaven for height, and the earth for depth, and the heart of kings is unsearchable.

Isaiah 55:9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Ephesians 2:4-7 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love with which he loved us...

Ephesians 3:18,19 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height...

his mercy

Psalm 103:17 But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on them that fear him, and his righteousness to children's children;

Luke 1:50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.

Cross References
Psalm 36:5
Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.

Psalm 57:10
For your steadfast love is great to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.

Psalm 115:11
You who fear the LORD, trust in the LORD! He is their help and their shield.

Psalm 115:13
he will bless those who fear the LORD, both the small and the great.

Psalm 117:2
For great is his steadfast love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD!

Isaiah 55:9
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

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