Psalm 40:6
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
Sacrifice and meal offering You have not desired; My ears You have opened; Burnt offering and sin offering You have not required.

King James Bible
Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.

Darby Bible Translation
Sacrifice and oblation thou didst not desire: ears hast thou prepared me. Burnt-offering and sin-offering hast thou not demanded;

World English Bible
Sacrifice and offering you didn't desire. You have opened my ears. You have not required burnt offering and sin offering.

Young's Literal Translation
Sacrifice and present Thou hast not desired, Ears Thou hast prepared for me, Burnt and sin-offering Thou hast not asked.

Psalm 40:6 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Sacrifice and offering - The first of the words used here - זבח zebach - means properly a bloody-offering; the other - מנחה minchāh - an offering without blood, as a thank-offering. See the notes at Isaiah 1:11. The four words employed in this verse - sacrifice, offering, burnt-offering, sin-offering - embrace all the species of sacrifice and offerings known among the Hebrews; and the idea here is, that such offering as they were accustomed to offer was required of him who is here referred to. A higher service was needed.

Thou didst not desire - The word here rendered desire means to incline to, to be favorably disposed, as in reference to doing anything; that is, to will, to desire, to please. The meaning here is, that he did not will this or wish it; he would not be pleased with it in comparison with obedience, or as a substitute for obedience. He preferred obedience to any external rites and forms; to all the rites and forms of religion prescribed by the law. They were of no value without obedience; they could not be substituted in the place of obedience. This sentiment often occurs in the Old Testament, showing that the design of all the rites then prescribed was to bring men to obedience, and that they were of no value without obedience. See the notes at Isaiah 1:10-20; compare 1 Samuel 15:22; Psalm 51:16-17; Hosea 6:6; see also the notes at Hebrews 10:5.

Mine ears hast thou opened - Margin: "digged." The Hebrew word - כרה kârâh - means "to dig;" as, to dig a well, Genesis 26:25; to dig a sepulchre, Genesis 50:5. As used here this would properly mean, "mine ears hast thou digged out;" that is, thou hast so opened them that there is a communication with the seat of hearing; or, in other words, thou hast caused me to hear this truth, or hast revealed it to me. Compare Isaiah 50:5, "The Lord God hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious." The meaning here would be, that the ear had been opened, so that it was quick to hear. An indisposition to obey the will of God is often expressed by the fact that the ears are "stopped:" Zechariah 7:11; Psalm 58:4-5; Proverbs 21:13. There is manifestly no allusion here, though that has been supposed by many to be the reference, to the custom of boring through the ear of a servant with an awl, as a sign that he was willing to remain with his master: Exodus 21:6; Deuteronomy 15:17. In that case the outer circle, or rim of the ear was "bored through" with an awl; here the idea is that of "hollowinq out," digging, excavating, that is, of making a passage "through," so that one could hear; not the mere piercing of the outer ear. The essential idea is, that this truth had been communicated to him - that God preferred obedience to sacrifice; and that he had been made attentive to that truth, "as if" he had been before deaf, and his ears had been opened. The principal difficulty in the passage relates to its application in the Epistle to the Hebrews, Hebrews 10:5. That difficulty arises from the fact that the Septuagint translates the phrase here by the words "a body hast thou prepared me;" and that the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews founds an argument on that translation, with reference to the work of the Messiah. On this point, see the notes at Hebrews 10:5. It is perhaps not now possible to explain this difficulty in a way that will be entirely satisfactory.

burnt-offering - See the notes at Isaiah 1:11. The uniqueness of this offering was that it was consumed by fire.

And sin-offering - sin-offering was an offering or sacrifice made specifically for sin, with a view to expiate either sin in general, or some specific act of sin. In the Mosaic law there are two kinds of these offerings prescribed; "trespass-offerings," or offerings for guilt or fault, denoted by the word אשׁם 'âshâm; and sin-offering, denoted by the word used here. They are offerings which were consumed by fire, Leviticus 5:1-19; Leviticus 6:1-7; Leviticus 14:10. But the essential "idea" was that they were for "sin," or for some act of guilt. In a general sense, this was true of all bloody offerings or sacrifices; but in these cases the attention of the worshipper was turned particularly to the fact of sin or transgression.

Thou hast not required - That is, thou hast not required them as compared with obedience; in other words, thou hast preferred the latter. These offerings would not meet the case. More was necessary to be done than was implied in these sacrifices. They would not expiate sin; they would not remove guilt; they would not give the conscience peace. A higher work, a work implied in an act of "obedience" of the most exalted kind, was demanded in order to accomplish the work to be done. Compare Psalm 51:16.

Psalm 40:6 Parallel Commentaries

Library
The Master's Profession --The Disciple's Pursuit
WHO IS THE SPEAKER that gives utterance to these marvellous words? In the first instance they must be understood to proceed from our Lord Jesus Christ. By the Spirit of prophecy in the Old Testament they were spoken of him, and by the Spirit of interpretation in the New Testament they have been applied to him. Mark, then, how vehemently he here declares that he has fully discharged the work which he was sent to accomplish. When, in the days of his flesh, he was crying to his Father for preservation
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 17: 1871

"Lo, I Come": Exposition
"Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: in burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come in (the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God." WE HAVE, in the use made of the passage by the inspired apostle, sufficient authority for applying the quotation from the fortieth psalm to our divine Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. With such a commentary, we
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 37: 1891

Eligius, Bishop of Noyon.
THE life of this pious bishop is so much the more worthy our consideration, on account of his having passed many years in the position of an ordinary citizen, before he entered on the clerical office; because his life may thus afford us a picture of the pious citizens of his time. Eligius was born at Chatelàt, a mile from Limoges, A. D. 588. His family had been Christian for many generations, and he received a pious education, [8] the result of which extended throughout his life. In his youth,
Augustus Neander—Light in the Dark Places

The Lamb of God, the Great Atonement
Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world! G reat and marvellous are the works of the LORD God almighty! We live in the midst of them, and the little impression they make upon us, sufficiently proves our depravity. He is great in the very smallest; and there is not a plant, flower, or insect, but bears the signature of infinite wisdom and power. How sensibly then should we be affected by the consideration of the Whole , if sin had not blinded our understandings, and hardened
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 1

Cross References
Hebrews 10:5
Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says, "SACRIFICE AND OFFERING YOU HAVE NOT DESIRED, BUT A BODY YOU HAVE PREPARED FOR ME;

Hebrews 10:6
IN WHOLE BURNT OFFERINGS AND sacrifices FOR SIN YOU HAVE TAKEN NO PLEASURE.

Hebrews 10:8
After saying above, "SACRIFICES AND OFFERINGS AND WHOLE BURNT OFFERINGS AND sacrifices FOR SIN YOU HAVE NOT DESIRED, NOR HAVE YOU TAKEN PLEASURE in them" (which are offered according to the Law),

1 Samuel 15:22
Samuel said, "Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.

Psalm 40:7
Then I said, "Behold, I come; In the scroll of the book it is written of me.

Psalm 50:8
"I do not reprove you for your sacrifices, And your burnt offerings are continually before Me.

Psalm 51:16
For You do not delight in sacrifice, otherwise I would give it; You are not pleased with burnt offering.

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