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A Commentary, Critical, Practical, and Explanatory on the Old and New Testaments, by Robert Jamieson, A.R. Fausset and David Brown [1882] at

Psalms Chapter 17

Psalms 17:2

psa 17:2

This Psalm is termed a prayer because the language of petition is predominant. With a just cause, sincerely presented, the writer prays for a just decision and help and protection. Pleading former mercies as a ground of hope, he urges his prayer in view of the malice, pride, rapacity, and selfishness of his foes, whose character is contrasted with his pious devotion and delight in God's favor. (Psa 17:1-15)

sentence--acquitting judgment.

from thy presence--Thy tribunal.

things that are equal--just and right, do Thou regard.

Psalms 17:3

psa 17:3

proved . . . visited . . . tried--His character was most rigidly tested, at all times, and by all methods, affliction and others (Psa 7:10).

purposed that, &c.--or, my mouth does not exceed my purpose; I am sincere.

Psalms 17:4

psa 17:4

works of men--sinful practices.

by the word of thy lips--as a guide (Psa 119:9, Psa 119:11, Psa 119:95).

destroyer--violent man.

Psalms 17:5

psa 17:5

May be read as an assertion "my steps or goings have held on to Thy paths."

Psalms 17:6

psa 17:6

wilt hear me--that is, graciously (Psa 3:4).

Psalms 17:7

psa 17:7

Show--set apart as special and eminent (Exo 8:18; Psa 4:3).

thy right hand--for Thy power.

Psalms 17:8

psa 17:8

Similar figures, denoting the preciousness of God's people in His sight, in Deu 32:10-11; Mat 23:37.

Psalms 17:9

psa 17:9

compass me--(compare Psa 118:10-12).

Psalms 17:10

psa 17:10

enclosed . . . fat--are become proud in prosperity, and insolent to God (Deu 32:15; Psa 73:7).

Psalms 17:11

psa 17:11

They pursue us as beasts tracking their prey.

Psalms 17:12

psa 17:12

The figure made more special by that of a lion lurking.

Psalms 17:13

psa 17:13

disappoint--literally, "come before," or, "encounter him." Supply "with" before "sword" (Psa 17:13), and "hand" (Psa 17:14). These denote God's power.

Psalms 17:14

psa 17:14

men . . . world--all men of this present time. They appear, by fulness of bread and large families, to be prosperous; but (Psa 17:15) he implies this will be transient, contrasting his better portion in a joyful union with God hereafter.

Next: Psalms Chapter 18