Psalm 107:33
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
He turns rivers into a desert, springs of water into thirsty ground,

King James Bible
He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and the watersprings into dry ground;

American Standard Version
He turneth rivers into a wilderness, And watersprings into a thirsty ground;

Douay-Rheims Bible
He hath turned rivers into a wilderness: and the sources of water into dry ground:

English Revised Version
He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and watersprings into a thirsty ground;

Webster's Bible Translation
He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and the water-springs into dry ground;

Psalm 107:33 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

Others have returned to tell of the perils of the sea. Without any allegory (Hengstenberg) it speaks of those who by reason of their calling traverse (which is expressed by ירד because the surface of the sea lies below the dry land which slopes off towards the coast) the sea in ships (read boŏnijoth without the article), and that not as fishermen, but (as Luther has correctly understood the choice of the word) in commercial enterprises. These have seen the works and wonders of God in the eddying deep, i.e., they have seen with their own eyes what God can do when in His anger He calls up the powers of nature, and on the other hand when He compassionately orders them back into their bounds. God's mandate (ויּאמר as in Psalm 105:31, Psalm 105:34) brought it to pass that a stormy wind arose (cf. עמד, Psalm 33:9), and it drove its (the sea's) waves on high, so that the seafarers at one time were tossed up to the sky and then hurled down again into deep abysses, and their soul melted בּרעה, in an evil, anxious mood, i.e., lost all its firmness. They turned about in a circle (יחוגּוּ( elc from חגג equals חוּג) and reeled after the manner of a drunken man; all their wisdom swallowed itself up, i.e., consumed itself within itself, came of itself to nought, just as Ovid, Trist. i. 1, says in connection with a similar description of a storm at sea: ambiguis ars stupet ipsa malis. The poet here writes under the influence of Isaiah 19:3, Isaiah 19:14. But at their importunate supplication God led them forth out of their distresses (Psalm 25:17). He turned the raging storm into a gentle blowing ( equals דּממה דּקּה, 1 Kings 19:12). הקים construed with ל here has the sense of transporting (carrying over) into another condition or state, as Apollinaris renders: αὐτίκα δ ̓ εἰς αὔρην προτέρην μετέθηκε θύελλαν. The suffix of גּלּיהם cannot refer to the מים רבּים in Psalm 107:23, which is so far removed; "their waves" are those with which they had to battle. These to their joy became calm (חשׁה) and were still (שׁתק as in Jonah 1:11), and God guided them ἐπὶ λιμένα θελήματος αὐτῶν (lxx). מחוז, a hapax-legomenon, from Arab. ḥâz (ḥwz), to shut in on all sides and to draw to one's self (root Arab. ḥw, gyravit, in gyrum egit), signifies a place enclosed round, therefore a haven, and first of all perhaps a creek, to use a northern word, a fiord. The verb שׁתק in relation to חשׁה is the stronger word, like יבשׁ in relation to חרם in the history of the Flood. Those who have been thus marvellously rescued are then called upon thankfully to praise God their Deliverer in the place where the national church assembles, and where the chiefs of the nation sit in council; therefore, as it seems, in the Temple and in the Forum.

(Note: In exact editions like Norzi, Heidenheim, and Baer's, before Psalm 107:23, Psalm 107:24, Psalm 107:25, Psalm 107:26, Psalm 107:27, Psalm 107:28, and Psalm 107:40 there stand reversed Nuns (נונין הפוכין, in the language of the Masora נונין מנזרות), as before Numbers 10:35 and between Numbers 10:36 and Numbers 11:1 (nine in all). Their signification is unknown.)

Now follow two more groups without the two beautiful and impressive refrains with which the four preceding groups are interspersed. The structure is less artistic, and the transitions here and there abrupt and awkward. One might say that these two groups are inferior to the rest, much as the speeches of Elihu are inferior to the rest of the Book of Job. That they are, however, nevertheless from the hand of the very same poet is at once seen from the continued dependence upon the Book of Job and Isaiah. Hengstenberg sees in Psalm 107:33-42 "the song with which they exalt the Lord in the assembly of the people and upon the seat of the elders." but the materia laudis is altogether different from that which is to be expected according to the preceding calls to praise. Nor is it any the more clear to us that Psalm 107:33. refer to the overthrow of Babylon, and Psalm 107:35. to the happy turn of affairs that took place simultaneously for Israel; Psalm 107:35 does not suit Canaan, and the expressions in Psalm 107:36. would be understood in too low a sense. No, the poet goes on further to illustrate the helpful government of God the just and gracious One, inasmuch as he has experiences in his mind in connection therewith, of which the dispersion of Israel in all places can sing and speak.

Psalm 107:33 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

turneth

1 Kings 17:1-7 And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said to Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel lives, before whom I stand...

Isaiah 13:19-21 And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees' excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah...

Isaiah 19:5-10 And the waters shall fail from the sea, and the river shall be wasted and dried up...

Isaiah 34:9,10 And the streams thereof shall be turned into pitch, and the dust thereof into brimstone...

Isaiah 42:15 I will make waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their herbs; and I will make the rivers islands, and I will dry up the pools.

Isaiah 44:27 That said to the deep, Be dry, and I will dry up your rivers:

Isaiah 50:2 Why, when I came, was there no man? when I called, was there none to answer? Is my hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem?...

Ezekiel 30:12 And I will make the rivers dry, and sell the land into the hand of the wicked: and I will make the land waste, and all that is therein...

Joel 1:20 The beasts of the field cry also to you: for the rivers of waters are dried up...

Nahum 1:4 He rebukes the sea, and makes it dry, and dries up all the rivers: Bashan languishes, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languishes.

Zephaniah 2:9,13 Therefore as I live, said the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, Surely Moab shall be as Sodom, and the children of Ammon as Gomorrah...

water-springs

1 Kings 18:5 And Ahab said to Obadiah, Go into the land, to all fountains of water, and to all brooks...

Jeremiah 14:3 And their nobles have sent their little ones to the waters: they came to the pits, and found no water...

Amos 4:7,8 And also I have withheld the rain from you, when there were yet three months to the harvest: and I caused it to rain on one city...

Cross References
1 Kings 17:1
Now Elijah the Tishbite, of Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, "As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word."

1 Kings 17:7
And after a while the brook dried up, because there was no rain in the land.

Psalm 74:15
You split open springs and brooks; you dried up ever-flowing streams.

Isaiah 29:17
Is it not yet a very little while until Lebanon shall be turned into a fruitful field, and the fruitful field shall be regarded as a forest?

Isaiah 42:15
I will lay waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their vegetation; I will turn the rivers into islands, and dry up the pools.

Isaiah 50:2
Why, when I came, was there no man; why, when I called, was there no one to answer? Is my hand shortened, that it cannot redeem? Or have I no power to deliver? Behold, by my rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a desert; their fish stink for lack of water and die of thirst.

Jeremiah 44:22
The LORD could no longer bear your evil deeds and the abominations that you committed. Therefore your land has become a desolation and a waste and a curse, without inhabitant, as it is this day.

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Psalm 107:32
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