Psalm 88 Bible Commentary

The Geneva Study Bible

(Read all of Psalm 88)
88:1 «A Song [or] Psalm for the sons of Korah, to the chief Musician upon Mahalath a Leannoth, Maschil of Heman the Ezrahite.» O LORD God of my salvation, I have cried day [and] night b before thee:

(a) That is, to humble. It was the beginning of a song by which tune this psalm was sung.
(b) Though many cry in their sorrows, yet they cry not earnestly to God for remedy as he did whom he confessed to be the author of his salvation.

88:5 c Free among the dead, like the slain that lie in the grave, whom thou rememberest no more: and they are cut off from thy d hand.

(c) For he who is dead is free from all cares and business of this life and thus he says because he was unprofitable for all matters concerning man's life, and as it were cut off from this world.
(d) That is, from your providence and care, which is meant according to the judgment of the flesh.

88:7 Thy wrath lieth hard upon me, and thou hast afflicted [me] with all thy e waves. Selah.

(e) The storms of your wrath have overwhelmed me.

88:8 Thou hast put away mine f acquaintance far from me; thou hast made me an abomination unto them: g [I am] shut up, and I cannot come forth.

(f) He attributes the loss and displeasure of his friends to God's providence by which he partly punishes and partly tries his.
(g) I see no end to my sorrows.

88:9 h Mine eye mourneth by reason of affliction: LORD, I have called daily upon thee, I have stretched out my hands unto thee.

(h) My eyes and face declare my sorrows.

88:10 Wilt thou shew i wonders to the dead? shall the dead arise [and] praise thee? Selah.

(i) He shows that the time is more convenient for God to help when men call to him in their dangers, than to tarry till they are dead, and then raise them up again.

88:12 Shall thy wonders be known in the dark? and thy righteousness in the land k of forgetfulness?

(k) That is, in the grave, where only the body lies without all sense and remembrance.

88:15 I [am] afflicted and ready to die l from [my] youth up: [while] I suffer thy terrors I am distracted.

(l) I am always in great dangers and sorrows as though my life would utterly be cut off every moment.