The Psalms of David in Metre

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Psalm 38

This psalm appears to have been penned by David, under some remarkable distress, attended with a deep sense of sin as the procuring cause of it. Here are, (1.) David’s sorrowful complaints of God’s sore displeasure, and of the weight of his own sins, ver. 1-5; of the sickness of his body, and distress of his mind, ver. 6-10; of the unkindness of his friends, ver. 11; and of the unprovoked injuries he received from his enemies, who were spiteful, cruel, subtle, unjust, ungrateful, impious, devilish, numerous and powerful, ver. 12, 20. (2.) His remarkable patience and resignation under his troubles, ver. 13-15. (3.) His fervent supplications to God for the mitigation of his troubles, ver. 1; and for comfort and support under, and speedy deliverance from them, ver. 16, 21-22; attended with candid and ingenuous acknowledgment of the sinful causes thereof, ver. 3-5, 18.

In all my troubles, let me search out, and by faith confess and mourn over the sinful causes of them. Let me take every distress as out of God’s hand; and call on him in the time thereof, that he may deliver me.

1 In thy great indignation,
O Lord, rebuke me not;
Nor on me lay thy chast’ning hand,
in thy displeasure hot.

2 For in me fast thine arrows stick,
thine hand doth press me sore:
3 And in my flesh there is no health,
nor soundness any more.

This grief I have, because thy wrath
is forth against me gone;
And in my bones there is no rest,
for sin that I have done.

4 Because gone up above mine head
my great transgressions be;
And, as a weighty burden, they
too heavy are for me.

5 My wounds do stink, and are corrupt;
my folly makes it so.
6 I troubled am, and much bowed down;
all day I mourning go.

7 For a disease that loathsome is
so fills my loins with pain,
That in my weak and weary flesh
no soundness doth remain.

8 So feeble and infirm am I,
and broken am so sore,
That, through disquiet of my heart,
I have been made to roar.

9 O Lord, all that I do desire
is still before thine eye;
And of my heart the secret groans
not hidden are from thee.

10 My heart doth pant incessantly,
my strength doth quite decay;
As for mine eyes, their wonted light
is from me gone away.

11 My lovers and my friends do stand
at distance from my sore;
And those do stand aloof that were
kinsmen and kind before.

12 Yea, they that seek my life lay snares:
who seek to do me wrong
Speak things mischievous, and deceits
imagine all day long.

13 But, as one deaf, that heareth not,
I suffered all to pass;
I as a dumb man did become,
whose mouth not opened was:

14 As one that hears not, in whose mouth
are no reproofs at all.
15 For, Lord, I hope in thee; my God,
thou’lt hear me when I call.

16 For I said, Hear me, lest they should
rejoice o’er me with pride;
And o’er me magnify themselves,
when as my foot doth slide.

17 For I am near to halt, my grief
is still before mine eye:
18 For I’ll declare my sin, and grieve
for mine iniquity.

19 But yet mine en’mies lively are,
and strong are they beside;
And they that hate me wrongfully
are greatly multiplied.

20 And they for good that render ill,
as en’mies me withstood;
Yea, ev’n for this, because that I
do follow what is good.

21 Forsake me not, O Lord; my God,
far from me never be.
22 O Lord, thou my salvation art,
haste to give help to me.