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57. Psalm 57

1{To the chief Musician. `Destroy not.` Of David. Michtam; when he fled from Saul in the cave.} Be gracious unto me, O God, be gracious unto me; for my soul taketh refuge in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings do I take refuge, until the calamities be overpast. 2I will call unto God, the Most High; unto God that performeth [all] for me. 3He will send from the heavens and save me; he hath covered with reproach him that would swallow me up. Selah. God hath sent forth his loving-kindness and his truth. 4My soul is in the midst of lions; I lie down [among] them that breathe out flames, the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword. 5Be exalted above the heavens, O God; let thy glory be above all the earth! 6They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul was bowed down: they have digged a pit before me; they are fallen into the midst thereof. Selah. 7My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing, yea, I will sing psalms. 8Awake, my glory; awake, lute and harp: I will wake the dawn. 9I will give thee thanks among the peoples, O Lord; of thee will I sing psalms among the nations: 10For thy loving-kindness is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds. 11Be exalted above the heavens, O God; let thy glory be above all the earth!

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Ps 57:1-11. Altaschith—or, "Destroy not." This is perhaps an enigmatical allusion to the critical circumstances connected with the history, for which compare 1Sa 22:1; 26:1-3. In Moses' prayer (De 9:26) it is a prominent petition deprecating God's anger against the people. This explanation suits the fifty-eighth and fifty-ninth also. Asaph uses it for the seventy-fifth, in the scope of which there is allusion to some emergency. Michtam—(See on Ps 16:1, title). To an earnest cry for divine aid, the Psalmist adds, as often, the language of praise, in the assured hope of a favorable hearing.

1. my soul—or self, or life, which is threatened.

shadow of thy wings—(Ps 17:8; 36:7).

calamities—literally, "mischiefs" (Ps 52:2; 55:10).

2. performeth—or, completes what He has begun.

3. from … swallow me up—that pants in rage after me (Ps 56:2).

mercy and … truth—(Ps 25:10; 36:5), as messengers (Ps 43:3) sent to deliver him.

4. The mingled figures of wild beasts (Ps 10:9; 17:12) and weapons of war (Ps 11:2) heighten the picture of danger.

whose … tongue—or slanders.

5. This doxology illustrates his view of the connection of his deliverance with God's glory.

6. (Compare Ps 7:15; 9:15, 16).

7. I will … praise—both with voice and instrument.

8. Hence—he addresses his glory, or tongue (Ps 16:9; 30:12), and his psaltery, or lute, and harp.

I myself … early—literally, "I will awaken dawn," poetically expressing his zeal and diligence.

9, 10. As His mercy and truth, so shall His praise, fill the universe.